Full ride

College football coach Brady HokeIf your son or daughter is going to get an athletic scholarship, you both need to know what college coaches are looking for, what they expect and how they do their recruiting.  In other words, you need to know what they’re thinking.  And especially what they’re thinking about your athlete.

First of all, know that coaches are trying to fill specific spots on their roster.  They’re looking ahead to your athlete’s year of entry, and they’re considering whether they have a spot for within the first couple years your son or daughter would be there.  If your athlete is in a sport that has position players, they’ll be recruited if the coach knows that slot will be open in their freshman or sophomore year.

You need to understand this point.  It doesn’t matter how talented your son or daughter is if there isn’t an opening for them.

*** For more insights, I encourage you to listen to my podcast interview with D1 coach Tom Kunis Episode #4.  We go into depth about what college coaches are looking for. ***

Second, is your athlete going to be a good fit in the program and college?  College coaches look at these things.  They want to know if the chemistry is there and if your son or daughter truly want to compete in their program.  If an athlete doesn’t want to go across the country, but his parents are pushing him, coaches will pick that up.  They want to eliminate as much chance as possible that your son or daughter will transfer.  They do their best on the front end to see if there’s a good fit. You should want that, too. Continue reading

NCAA ConferencesFor a high school student-athlete, there aren’t many things more frightening than talking with a college coach on the phone. It can be daunting. And it should be. You’ve been dreaming of getting an athletic scholarship and now the coaches are calling. You’re on the spot.

You need to prepare for these occasions. Once you take a few calls, you’ll get more comfortable. That is, until you get a call from a coach you really want to play for. This school is on your A list. You’ve been hoping he or she will call. And now it happens. It can really make you nervous.

When taking a coach’s call, try to relax. He or she will understand you’re nervous. That’s ok.

Secondly, have a list of questions ready. If the coach is calling your cell phone, you’ll have to think quickly. The list will have to be in your head. Continue reading

10 Recruiting questionsHere are 10 of the top questions parents are asking about athletic scholarships.  As we close out 2015 and turn the calendar to the new year, I hope the answers to these questions will keep you pointed in the right direction.

Before we get into them, I want to remind you that my free Recruiting Mini-Course will take you step-by-step through the things you need to do in 2016.  I encourage you to watch this three-part video tutorial.

And now, here are the questions:

ONE:  What’s included in an athletic scholarship?   It depends on the offer, but a scholarship can range from a full ride to a portion of a student-athlete’s college expenses.  Your kid may be offered tuition, or room and board, or books, or a combination of these things.  Each sport has a limit on the number of scholarships it can offer, so the coach has to divide the dollars between the scholarship athletes.

TWO:  How do I get my kid noticed by college coaches?  The most important thing is to take the initiative.  Don’t wait for college coaches to find your son or daughter, because it probably won’t happen.  Sure, the elite athletes get discovered easily.  However, in most cases, kids need to take the first step in order to get the attention of college coaches.  What you should do is put together and send a good, short introductory packet that makes a good first impression on coaches at the schools you have interest in.  You’ll be surprised how this simple step can produce amazing results.

THREE:  Are athletic scholarships guaranteed for four years?  No.  Scholarships are usually awarded year-to-year, although the NCAA allows multi-year offers.  If a student-athlete performs poorly, he can lose his scholarship the next year.  Behavior and grades are other factors that can affect an athlete’s scholarship renewal.  It is important to read the language of the scholarship agreement and ask questions.

[Special Note:  I wanted to alert you to the $60 Off Sale on any Recruit-Me Premium Membership.  Check it out.  Sale ends January 5.]

FOUR:  How common is a full-ride scholarship?  Full ride scholarships are only offered in “head count sports.”  The remainder of the sports are called “equivalency sports,” where coaches divide the scholarships among the scholarship athletes.   These athletes receive “partial scholarships.”  Full-ride sports at the D1 level are  football, men and women’s basketball, and women’s gymnastics, volleyball and tennis.

Continue reading

FootballThe NCAA guidelines state that full-ride scholarships will cover fees and tuition, board, room, as well as all books related to a particular course. But these scholarships are only offered to students who participate in “head-count sports” such as basketball, Division 1-A football, women’s tennis, women’s gymnastics, or women’s volleyball. All other sports fall under the category of “equivalency sports”, which allows a coach to determine the allotted scholarship amount for many players. Some of these scholarships may be partial while others are full-ride.

Equivalency Sports for Men and Women

Equivalency sport scholarships can be used as a starting point to obtain a full-ride scholarship in future years, or at least an increase in funding as you progress through the program. Sports that fall under this category for men include baseball, Division 1-AA football, gymnastics, wrestling, tennis, rifle, and volleyball. The women’s list of sports includes equestrian, rowing, field hockey, softball, squash, and rugby. Equivalency sports for both men and women include cross-country/field and track events, fencing, ice hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, skiing, diving and swimming, as well as water polo. Athletic scholarships through these sports will offer monetary and support benefits that can be crucial for the development of student-athletes.

Financial Realities

Full-ride athletic scholarships are expected to cover all costs involved in the education of a student. But there remains a sizable difference between the costs of attending college and the scholarship. Students are not fully covered for things such as incidentals and travel home on vacations, but the scholarship will be a huge factor in saving a lot of money over the duration of your college career.

I surveyed parents aSurveynd student-athletes earlier this month, and the responses were insightful.  From goals to needs, many people expressed their honest thoughts.  I’m thankful for the detailed responses.  Let me give you a peek at some trends I saw in the responses, then I’ll address them.

Let me start at the beginning.

The first thing that popped out to me was the goal student-athletes expressed.  By far, the most frequent answer was “A full ride scholarship.”  That’s great, because you have a clear goal, the highest scholarship goal when it comes to financial help.  Several others stated they wanted a partial or 50% scholarship. Continue reading

FootballFor many high school athletes, they make their college choice for the wrong reasons.  Here are my top 5 wrong reasons for choosing a particular program:

1.  My father (or mother) went there.

2.  They’re my favorite team.

3.  I like the campus. Continue reading

NCAA ConferencesA question which comes up often regarding scholarships is, “How many scholarships are available?”  There are a number of ways to answer that, but I thought it would be helpful to look at how many there are per school per sport.   The following information is for the NCAA.

First of all, the data I want to share with you is the maximum allowable scholarships.  It all depends on funds available at that particular school as to whether the maximum is available for the program.   For instance, if a golf coach is not a good fundraiser, he or she may not be able to fulfill the maximum allowable scholarship limit.  It would be good to ask the coaches how many scholarships he or she has for their sport.  Continue reading

college athletesEvery parent alive would love for their kids to get a complete scholarships and dodge the escalating tuition bullet.  For athletes, these are called full rides.  We read about them in the paper on signing days, and the write-ups make it seem like every scholarship athlete is rewarded with a full ride. 

But no.  That’s not true.  Continue reading

The NCAA guidelines state that full-ride scholarships will cover fees and tuition, board, room, as well as all books related to a particular course. But these scholarships are only offered to students who participate in “head-count sports” such as basketball, Division 1-A football, women’s tennis, women’s gymnastics, or women’s volleyball. All other sports fall under the category of “equivalency sports”, which allows a coach to determine the allotted scholarship amount for many players. Some of these scholarships may be partial while others are full-ride.

Equivalency Sports for Men and Women

Equivalency sport scholarships can be used as a starting point to obtain a full-ride scholarship in future years, or at least an increase in funding as you progress through the program. Sports that fall under this category for men include baseball, Division 1-AA football, gymnastics, wrestling, tennis, rifle, and volleyball. The women’s list of sports includes equestrian, rowing, field hockey, softball, squash, and rugby. Equivalency sports for both men and women include cross-country/field and track events, fencing, ice hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, skiing, diving and swimming, as well as water polo. Athletic scholarships through these sports will offer monetary and support benefits that can be crucial for the development of student-athletes.    

Financial Realities

Full-ride athletic scholarships are expected to cover all costs involved in the education of a student. But there remains a sizeable difference between the costs of attending college and the scholarship. Students are not fully covered for things such as incidentals and travel home on vacations, but the scholarship will be a huge factor in saving a lot of money over the duration of your college career.