What does it take to make it the Next Level?
Athletes all over the country are training harder than ever with the dream of one day playing for their favorite college team. The truth is however, only a small fraction will ever make it past high school athletics. Many of these athletes are good players but seem to be missing a few characteristics that the college recruits are looking for. Some of these traits are uncontrollable (height, optimal weight, raw talent, coaching) but many traits are controllable (attitude, grades, nutrition, commitment, dedication, work ethic, focus, self-confidence). If you are looking for a chance to play at the next level, focus on the controllable and stop dwelling on the uncontrollable and remember if you are good enough they will find you!
There are many ways to get noticed, including one day camps, college camps, high school showcases, highlight tapes from hudl, and most importantly having a stellar season. However all these options are not possible if you are not willing to put in the hard work that is necessary. I work with athletes of all sports and I see it all the time; they become obsessed with taking visits to colleges and attending one day camps that before they realize it the season is there and they are not prepared physically, mentally, and most importantly fundamentally. The college visits and showcases are important but they mean nothing if the athlete is not preparing for the season. I find the athletes that train hard the entire off season, attending a few showcases and camps, not only go on to play at the college level but have much success. Setting a solid foundation in the off season is the key. Below is a list of some key components that will give you a chance to get to the next level.
- Make a player profile online in an online database
- Make a short highlight tape and send it to as many colleges as possible
- Meet with a nutritionist to develop a game plan and find an optimal weight
- Find a recruiting company that will help in the process
- Work with a position specific coach in the off season
- Attend a few camps at the schools you are interested in
- Try to stay above a 3.5 GPA (just to be safe)
- Talk with your HS coach and set up a plan
- Limit to becoming a one or at the most a two sport athlete
- Stay level as a player and as a recruit (don’t get up and down)
- Keep all options open, never burn any bridges
A coach once told me that the greatest pleasure in life is proving people wrong. If you want something go get it. Period. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do something, a lot of times people want to criticize you because they can’t do it themselves. I carried a little different mentality than most and I feel that’s one of the major reasons why I made it to the highest level. I loved when people doubted me; it was more fuel to the fire. Although every individual’s journey is different I always like to share my stories and experiences with the athletes I train. I always remind them that it’s out there for them and all they need to do is put in the work and stay focus.