For many graduating high school students, a large part of school was sports. In college, things are a bit different. Depending on the school you're looking at, getting onto a team could be extremely difficult. Also, getting your academic work done while simultaneously playing sports in college can be tough, to say the least!
There are a few simple guidelines to follow if you're hoping to score a spot on a college team, because it isn't just about showcasing your skills. Try to keep the following in mind:
- Start looking at college teams (and gathering college information) early on in the process - even in ninth or tenth grade.
- Take some time to watch colleges play to better assess your abilities and how they compare with those of athletes at the collegiate level.
- Watch a college team practice; it gives you a good idea of how a coach relates to the team.
- Beware of the coach who "negative recruits" against other schools.
- Familiarize yourself with NCAA Guide for the College-Bound Student-Athlete, which includes a helpful section on "What to Ask" about college athletic programs.
- Assume that talent in a high school translates into potential athletic scholarships or sports scholarships.
- Misjudge your athletic ability by inflating or underestimating your potential. Be realistic about your skills.
- Confuse a coach's interest with a guarantee of admission, playing time, or even of making the team.