Test your knowledge of the athletic recruiting process

Many families learn about the athletic recruiting process after it is too late and lose out on an opportunity to be recruited. Test your knowledge here to see how much you know and what you need to learn…

You become a prospective student-athlete in what grade?

When you enter the 9th grade. This is an obscure term used by the NCAA, we just wanted to see if anyone was actually aware of it.

You are allowed how many official visits to Division 1 schools?

You are allowed 5 total paid official visits to Division One colleges provided they are offered to you, There is no limit at the Division 2 & Division 3 levell. Most Division 3 schools cannot afford paid visits.

I can visit a school and coach as many times as I would like as long as I pay for it.

Yes, you are free to visit any school as often as you like and long as you pay your own travel expenses.

An NCAA D1 or D2 coach can call a high school athlete in any grade?

The NCAA has strict rules regarding when college coaches can call recruits. At the D1 level for most sports (basketball, football, women’s hockey, swimming, and track & field have different schedules), a college coach cannot call you until September 1st of your junior year in high school. For Division 2, a college coach can call you as often as they like starting June 15 before your junior year. For more specific contact rules see the NCAA guide for the college bound student-athlete.

A high school athlete can call an NCAA college coach in any grade?

Yes, you can call a coach as often as you like in any grade. If you call your freshman or sophomore year and leave a message, the coach might not be able to call back, but you are free to keep calling them until they answer. The rules were developed to reduce the amount of phone calls coaches could make to a prospect.

Athletic scholarships are offered at?

Athletic scholarships are offered at the Division 1 and Division 2 level. Division 3 schools are only allowed to offer academic grants and financial aid not related to your athletic ability (or participation). Ivy League schools do not offer athletic scholarships. The NAIA and NJCAA also offer athletic scholarships.

Athletic scholarships are guaranteed for 4 years of college?

The answer is yes, no, and maybe. The NCAA recently passed a rule that allows colleges to offer multi-year scholarships but not all schools can afford this or will be offering multi-year scholarships. Some will only be offering them to certain players. There were also new rules passed where injury or a coaches desire to have you gone could not take away your athletic scholarship. Your scholarship can be removed for poor grades or conduct detrimental to the school or program.

All Division 1 teams offer the maximum amount of athletic scholarships that they are allowed?

No, in reality very few D1 colleges offer the maximum amount of athletic scholarships. After football and basketball, you will find many college teams and programs with only a few scholarships for their entire team.

I must register with the Eligibility Center if I want to play athletics at the Division 3 level?

No, the Eligibility Center is only for all NCAA D1 colleges and most D2 colleges.

I must complete how many core courses in high school to be eligible for NCAA D1 or D2

You must complete 16 core courses in high school for eligibility at the NCAA level as well as earn a 2.3 GPA (as of August 1st, 2016) in those core courses as well as have a SAT/ACT score that meets the sliding GPA scale the NCAA has developed. See NCAA Guide for College Bound Student-Athlete

Being a recruited athlete will give me a better chance of being accepted to a college than non-athletes?

Yes, having a coach actively recruiting you and submitting your name to admissions as a student they are recruiting and would like to see accepted is a powerful tool and can give you an advantage over other applicants if you put yourself in the right position.

Walk-on’s can be awarded athletic scholarships?

Walk-on’s can be awarded athletic scholarship money at the coaches discretion at any time, assuming the coach has money to offer and thinks you are deserving. Some coaches with no money to offer in year one, will reward walk-on’s in year 2,3, or 4 if they have money and think you deserve it and think you need it to remain at the school.

Junior Colleges can award athletic scholarships?

Yes, there are many athletic scholarships available at Junior College for all sports and the level of award varies by Division.

If I am a scholarship athlete at an NCAA school and wish to transfer, I am free to talk to other schools and coaches?

No, you need what is called a Permission to Contact Letter from your current school before you speak to another coach or school – or another school or coach speaks to you.

The National Letter of Intent is offered at all NCAA schools at the NCAA Division 3 level?

The National Letter of Intent is not offered at the Division 3 level. This can make recruiting tricky at this level because there is no document you can sign guaranteeing any aid in recruitment to Division 3 schools.

If I sign a national letter of intent with a school, that guarantee’s me admission into that school?

No, the National Letter of Intent has NOTHING to do with admission to a particular school and is not part of your application. However, if you are signing one, it’s a safe bet that the coach has had your academic record already reviewed and approved by admissions. There have been cases of athletes doing poorly academically their senior year after they sign and having their application pulled and other instances of college presidents finding out the coaches are recruiting kids who can’t read.

I have to stay this many years at a school where I sign a National Letter of Intent?

Signing a National Letter of Intent guarantees you athletic scholarship money for a minimum of ONE year. After that, you are free to explore transfer opportunities, provided you have been given permission by your current school.

I have to sign a national letter of intent to be awarded an athletic scholarship at every NCAA school?

No, not every NCAA school is part of the NLI program, but signing brings certainty to the recruiting process to the schools that participate in the NLI and guarantees you scholarship money for one year. All D1 schools are members, but not all D2 schools are members of the NLI. D3 schools do not participate in the NLI!

If I sign a National Letter of Intent and then the coach who recruited me leaves, I do not have to attend that school?

No, you sign a NLI with a school not a coach. If the coach leaves, you are legally obligated to attend the university for one year with which you signed unless you appeal to the College and beg your way out!

Tryouts for NCAA college teams while in high school are allowed at?

While you can be freely scouted by any coach from any school at more or less any time, actual tryouts (an arranged workout between you and a school) are not allowed at the NCAA D1 and D3 levels for a specific team, but tryouts are allowed at the D2 level at the campus of the D2 University.

If a coach has declared me a Redshirt, that means I cannot play in competition that season?

While a coach can declare you a redshirt at any time, you can also dress for games and appear in any game even if you have been declared a redshirt that year. Once you appear in a game, you lose your redshirt status, even if you played for one play or one second for that matter. Many redshirt football players dress and travel with their teams and are put into games if there are injuries to other players at their positions. If you do play a limited amount or are injured, there are appeals processes to get that year back and many players have had their redshirt year restored.

A coach can redshirt me in any year, even if I am not hurt?

Similar to the answer above, a coach can ask you to red shirt in any year even if you are perfectly healthy. Why? Well, there may be other players that play your position and you might not see much playing time until they graduate and the coach wants to save you for one more year.

Only 50% of student-athletes at the NCAA D1 and D2 level receive any athletic scholarship money??

While there are over 200,000+ athletes competing at the D1 and D2 level, about 50% of them receive some athletic scholarship money and for some, that could mean a few thousand dollars a year towards their tuition bill. The rest play for the love of the game and need to figure out how to pay for college!