Tips For Athletes

how to pick university

  • Academics

    • Does the college offer my area of interest?
    • Does the college offer a wide range of majors if I don’t know what I want to major in?
    • Does the college fit my academic ability?
    • What type of academic support will you receive? Tutors, mentors, support staff, are professors understanding of you being an athlete, etc.

  • Location

    • What size of college are you going to excel at?

  • Volleyball

    • What are you looking for in a volleyball program? What level of competition can you play at?

      • Junior College

      • NAIA

      • NCAA III

      • NCAA II

      • NCAA I

    • Do you want to play as a freshman or can you wait a couple of years?

    • What type of scholarship are you looking for?

    • What type of coaching staff do you want to play for?


  • Academics

    • Can you be successful academically at this college?

  • Athletics

    • Do you play a position that the college is recruiting that year?
        • Athletic Ability vs. Skill

        • Attitude & Work Ethic

        • Character


  • Freshman Year

    • Develop a list of colleges that fit your criteria (20).
      • Send club schedule to colleges

      • Attend college matches to see the style of play and how coaches work in matches

      • Send a post card or e-mail to colleges a week before attending major tournaments (National Qualifiers, Regionals, etc.)

      • Attend college camps

      • Post information on: 

      • Check out:  

  • Sophomore Year

    • Send high school schedule to colleges

    •  Send club schedule to colleges

    •  Send a post card or e-mail to colleges a week before attending major tournaments (National Qualifiers, Regionals, etc.)

    •  Continue to attend college matches

    •  Visit campuses during the spring & summer – Unofficial Visits

    • Attend college camps

    • Update University Athlete website

    • Register with the NCAA Clearinghouse:

    Take SAT/ACT one time and send to NCAA

    Start to look at requirements needed to play in college

    Get on phone with coaches and develop a relationship, this shows interest and helps a coach get a feel for who you are off of the court. CHARACTER is huge these days with early recruiting!! 

  • Junior Year

    • Send high school schedule to colleges

    • Have an e-mail account and check it regularly

    • Continue to take Unofficial Visits during the summer and throughout the year

    • Begin to narrow your list of colleges

    • Attend college camps of schools on your short list

    Take SAT/ACT again and send to NCAA

  • Senior Year:

    • Send high school schedule to colleges

    • Take Official Visits (maximum of 5 visits)

    • Sign National Letter of Intent

    • Send Club Schedule to colleges

    • Update University Athlete website

    Always encourage your kids to use their resources and while competing in tournaments near other colleges to visit their campus. Don't need to meet with coach per say but this gives them the opportunity to see other colleges of different sizes, locations while already in the area... saves money and time.

    Start the process early rather than later. With the way recruiting is, a lot of college programs offer scholarships out by the beginning of Junior year and have kids commit. 

VIDEO introduction

    • Voice Introduction: Name, year you graduate, position, where you are from, major, interest, where you are located on the video.

    • Short Skills session, 5 minutes (attacking, serve receive, defense, etc.)

    • Show an entire match that was competitive and that you played well in but cut out dead time. It doesn’t need to be a match you won.

    • Include a profile sheet and short note when you email the video. In the subject line, make sure you include your graduation year and your club team.

recruiting process checklist

  • Be organized. Start a filing system for each school. This will help you keep track of what you sent to each college and what you receive from each college.

  • After a visit, have a notebook of things you liked/disliked to help keep your thoughts organized. Also good for making a decision and can see what you thought of school- what's the 3 most important things on your list and does that school fulfill those.
  • Make sure to proof read your email and that all important information is correct (Coach, School Name)

  • Be sure to have e-mail and phone number so coaches can contact you during your junior year.
  • Check your e-mail on a regular basis and return coach’s e-mails ASAP.
  • Fill out and return all information schools request ASAP.
  • If you have received information or e-mails from a school that you are definitely not interested in, send the coach a short e-mail to let them know they are not on your list.
  • Highlight your strengths; approach touch 9’ 11”, 4.0 student.
  • Send the coach a copy of newspaper article if you make All-State
  • How many scholarships do you have available?

  • Are you recruiting more than one player for my position?

  • How many players are returning at my position?

  • If I get injured would the school honor my scholarship?

  • Who covers medical expenses if I’m injured?

  • What is your vision and goals for your program?

  • What type of coach are you?

  • Are their commitments off the court? (Community service, etc.)

  • What is the time commitment during the off season?

  • What are your long term goals in coaching? (are you looking to move)

  • How will you help me be successful academically?

  • Will a scholarship include summer school or a fifth year?

  • What is the average attendance of a home match?

  • How does your team travel and how much class time is missed?

  • Does the scholarship cover off campus housing?

  • Where are the majority of players from, in-state, national, or international?

  • What are the team rules, expectations, etc?

  • What is campus and team life like?  (commuter campus)

  • How many players have transferred under you and why?

  • What are practices like?

  • What type of coach is she/he? (Is it the same answer the coach gave)

  • If you could start the recruiting over would you choose this school again?

  • Does the coach care about you as a person?

  • What are your goals as a player for this program?

  • What does the team do away from volleyball?

  • What do you like least about the coach?

  • What do you like most about the coach?

  • What do you like least about the school?

  • What do you like most about the school?

  • What are practices like?

  • What does a year of training at your school all involve?

  • How is the academic support for you?

In the end ask yourself this question; would you still be happy at a college if you had a career ending injury your first day of practice?

Social media accounts: keep it clean. Yes you are still young kids but what you post is a reflection of who you are. It is public information and never goes away. Think before you post, like or snap!!