We had eight athletes from my high school basketball team in my junior year who played sports in college; five of them received Division I scholarships. Scholarships were awarded in football, basketball, track, golf and wrestling.
One athlete was a two-time All-American linebacker who became the all-time record holder for tackles in a career at Ohio State. One was an All-American linebacker at Penn State the very same year, and another became a NAIA Division II All-American in basketball at Malone College.
How you can do it
It’s important for student-athletes to make their own connections with coaches of colleges they want to attend rather than let parents do it. And it’s not really as overwhelming as it appears.
Once you’ve done your initial homework—that is, contacting the schools for information about the academics, financial aid, room and board—write letters to the coaches of your sport. Introduce yourself and request a program packet, which gives lots of information about the many facets of their athletic program.
Your introductory letter should be well written, typed, and have no errors in spelling, grammar or punctuation. Think of it as a cover letter for a job, and present yourself in a brief, polite, informative and intelligent manner. And remember that you shouldn’t write a form letter to send out to everyone. Add a more personal touch.
DO Introduce yourself by name, high school and graduation date.
Say why you want to go to that particular school.
Give a brief background that includes your GPA, field of study and class rank.
Include long-term and short-term athletic and academic goals.
Ask for the college’s program packet and questionnaire.
Conclude with telephone numbers where you can be reached.
Excerpted from Mark Bercik’s book, America’s Complete Sports Scholarship Guide. Visit him online at www.athleticscholarshipbook.com
Hire a professional to tape your recruiting video and you could pay as much as $2,500. If you’re like the average person who must watch your finances, you can do it yourself for a whole lot less money. Just keep these ideas in mind while you film.
Don’t use too much zoom.
Don’t try to get closeups of the ball flying through the air.
Don’t try to film through a fence or other obstruction. It’s better to locate yourself somewhere else to avoid missing a shot because of an unfocused camera.
Don’t film into direct sunlight. It will cause a glare.
Do use a tripod to avoid movement. Unstable camera work shows when producing a highlight video.
Don’t film at such a distance that you can’t identify jersey numbers. Coaches won’t know who they should be watching.
Do record 10 seconds before and after you do an interview if you want to put in special effects.
Do start over if you become tongue-tied during an interview.
Do purchase a very high-quality recording tape to record on.
Don’t ever record on a tape that’s already been recorded on.