I get to work with a lot of athletes.  I’ve worked with athletes from the professional level all the way down to little league.  A lot of the athletes we work with would love to play in college, but understand that probably isn’t a realistic shot for them.

On the other hand some do have the potential to play in college and that is why they have come to us.  In my years of dealing with these college prospects, I have learned a few things I wanted to share with you about how you might be able to obtain a college scholarship.  I’m not saying do these and you will definitely get a scholarship, but you won’t know if you don’t try.

  • Talent – Your athlete has to have some talent, otherwise this is a meaningless conversation.  I’m not talking about the bias some parents have of their kids.  “My kid should be playing, but the coach doesn’t know what he is doing.”  Your athlete should have some athleticism.  Should have some success at the sport.  Should have some accolades that have gone his/her way.  Heart is great, but if I can’t just look at the athlete and see athlete, then you will really have a high mountain to climb.

  • Make A Resume – This is like a job interview, so plan accordingly.  Also, there are a lot of colleges out there and unless you have a stud athlete, you need to put yourself on the coach’s radar.  They don’t have scouts the way a pro team does, so anything you can do to point him/her into your direction, DO IT.  Make a highlight tape if applicable.  Make a resume sheet, that discusses all your highlights, team highlights, etc.  You got to make yourself shine.  Then you have to make a list of potential colleges you’d like to attend and send it to those coaches.  We sent an athletic resume of mine to a lot of colleges when I was going through the process and one was North Carolina.  It was mainly for track, but I had basketball accomplishments on the sheet and I received a form rejection letter from Dean Smith’s office – thanks for applying, but we don’t need you.  I wonder if I kept that form.

  • Make An Elite Travel Team – Say what you will about travel teams or AAU teams, but it looks like if you play a sport that has these, then your college exposure seems to increase.  A lot of these travel clubs have elite teams.  If you have talent, then try to make these teams.  Most of the time these teams travel to big time tournaments where there are a lot of college scouts at one place.  These college scouts like to see all the best talent in one spot.  Play well in these tournaments and you have an opportunity to make an impression on a scout of a college that you might want to attend.

  • Attend Camps – This is big especially for football.  Football doesn’t have AAU teams so go to a camp of a college you want to attend.  Let that coach know you are going so maybe you will get to introduce yourself to him.  They will probably have you run a 40 yard dash and do some preliminary testing.  Do well in those.  My client, Ben Hale, got two scholarships offered to him this summer because of good showings at these camps.

  • Get Good Grades – If you have talent, then if you have good grades this will all but seal your deal to getting a scholarship.  If a coach knows he won’t have to worry about you being academically ineligible, that might make you shine that much more to him.

There might be a few more I could put on here, but these seem to be the common ones with the athletes I work with.  Like I said, treat this like a job interview.  You want to make a good impression not only with what you show him/her you can do on the playing field, but what type of outstanding young person you are.  You have all these factors then I can’t see how they wouldn’t give you a scholarship or some type of financial help for your sport.