If the time to start thinking about colleges is approaching, there are a few things every athlete should know – especially if playing in college is something of interest to you. Regardless if you want to play for fun or are trying to go Pro, chances are, you are experienced. Whether you’ve attended endless hockey camps and played for top teams, understanding the recruiting process can help you get a step ahead.
Here, our experts at The Edge Sports Center are taking you inside the world of college recruiting.
One of the first things to know is that varsity players are generally recruited by college coaches. When applying for D1 or D2 level schools, you also need to meet NCAA Eligibility.
- Required school courses
- GPA requirements
- Minimum scores on SAT/ACT
Should you meet all requirements, the recruiting process can begin. There are several ways in which a college coach or representative can reach out to you.
- Face to face contact, even a simple ‘hello.’
- Evaluation of the player by the representative during a game or practice.
- Campus visits by the athlete and his/her guardian. Many of these visits are considered official and often paid for by the college. These paid expenses may include transportation, lodging, meals, and tickets for any sporting events on the campus.
- Verbal commitments occur when the college-bound student verbally agrees to play for the college team before a letter of intent is presented/signed. This stage of commitment is non-binding from both parties.
- Official commitment occurs when the player signs a National Letter of Intent, and agrees to play for the college for one academic year. As long as the student remains eligible under NCAA guidelines, financial assistance if generally offered to the player. Once the letter is signed, the recruitment process ends.
The recruiting process is, without doubt, a stressful period for any college-bound student. With this in mind, NCAA schools are limited to certain periods of the year in which they may (or may not) contact the prospective player. Below is an overview of the three recruiting periods.
- CONTACT PERIOD is where college coaches may have face to face contact with prospective players, attend games and/or practices, visit high schools, write and telephone players and their parents.
- EVALUATION PERIOD is similar in that coaches have all the above privileges, minus face to face contact. That is, unless the college-bound student is on the college campus. This is the only exception to face to face contact during the evaluation period.
- QUIET PERIOD allows coaches to maintain contact via written communication or telephone calls only. During this time, face to face contact and viewing of the player is not permitted.
- DEAD PERIOD is a time similar to the above with the exception of written and telephone calls being allowed.
While this is a mere start to for the college-bound student, understanding what is ahead is always suggested. Remember, your first step is researching and narrowing down colleges that may interest you! Be sure the academic offerings and campus environment are of interest, and explore what means of financial assistance are available.
Hockey Camps and Programs with The Edge Sports Center
At The Edge Sports Center, we are proud to have seen many players come through the facility that have moved on to play for Division I college teams. Whether you’re interested in learning more about the game or joining hockey programs to enhance your skills, our qualified and experienced staff is here to help bring you to the next level.