The August 8th Wall Street Journal article by Heidi Mitchell headlined “Competing for Scholarships on the Field and Online” reports:
With tuition for a four-year private university topping $250,000, families are eager to tap some of the $2 billion that the National Collegiate Athletic Association estimates is granted in athletic scholarships for the 23 NCAA sports each year.
In my new book HOW TO SUCCEED IN HIGH SCHOOL AND PREP FOR COLLEGE, I have a section on this topic:
ADDITIONAL ASSISTS IN COLLEGE APPLICATIONS
Can sports be a possible assist into college? (Do not automatically skip this section.)
A college may be interested in you for the sport you play even if you are not a widely recruited football or basketball high school star.
At various U.S. colleges today there are many college sports teams (as opposed to college sports clubs) in addition to football and basketball whose coaches may have a say in your acceptance at the college.
Some of these sports may be fencing, tennis, swimming, lacrosse, track, golf; schools may have women’s teams in some sports and men’s teams in other sports.
And your own high school coach may be able to recommend you to the college coach.
Play sports because you love it or it is what you want to learn.
Do not participate in high school sports only as something to put on your college application. If you are not interested in sports, spend your limited free time pursuing something you love.
Where can you learn which schools have which college teams?
Check out the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s website at www.ncaa.org for information on how student athletes can comply with NCAA bylaws in order to compete in intercollegiate athletics as well as information on what high school students need to do to be eligible to compete their first year in college.
If you are planning to visit a campus with a college sports team on which you would be interested in playing, contact the coach ahead of time for a possible appointment. You can ask your high school coach to put in a good word for you with the college coach.
Contact the coach ahead of an on-campus visit.
If you and the college coach hit it off, it is quite possible that the coach will notify the admissions office that he/she is interested in you (although this does not necessarily mean you will be accepted nor does it necessarily mean a sports scholarship). If the team could use your ability and you want to play on the team, you might thus find yourself in a stronger applicant position.
Telling a coach you will play on the team is an implied contract.
If you tell a college coach that you will be a member of his/her team if you are accepted to the college and then attend, in my opinion this is an implied contract. This is especially so if the college coach has put in a good word for you with the admissions office.
It is a serious commitment that you should keep for at least one season of your sport. If you have no intention of participating in that sport once you get to college, you should not tell a college coach you will participate in order to get the coach to help with your application.
This is an important life lesson — only make commitments that you intend to keep. The trustworthiness of your word is a very important attribute for success in life. You want to earn the reputation of someone who can be trusted.
A coach putting in a good word for you that helps get you into that college is the same as a debt (like car payments). You pay back the debt to the coach with sweat equity — your time and effort — rather than in money payments for the car. And you have a responsibility to pay off the debt before you join a fraternity or sorority or undertake other activities that interfere with your commitment to the coach.
Play sports wholeheartedly — be the best you can be.
HOW TO SUCCEED IN HIGH SCHOOL AND PREP FOR COLLEGE is the first book in the 3-book series HOW TO SUCCEED IN HIGH SCHOOL, COLLEGE, AND BEYOND COLLEGE. All three books are filled with practical step-by-step advice to help teens and young adults.
P.S. HOW TO SUCCEED IN HIGH SCHOOL AND PREP FOR COLLEGE is available in both paperback and Kindle formats. If you would like to read it in Kindle format but do not have a Kindle, download the FREE Kindle app for almost any electronic device at http://amazon.com/gp/feature.html?ie=UTF8&docId=1000493771
© 2012 Miller Mosaic LLC
Phyllis Zimbler Miller has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School and is the co-founder of the online marketing company www.MillerMosaicLLC.com
She is also the author of fiction and nonfiction books/ebooks, including TOP TIPS FOR HOW TO MARKET YOUR BOOK ON AMAZON AND FACEBOOK and her thriller CIA FALL GUY.