Don’t Be Fooled The Recruiting Process Cost Big Money
Going from high school athlete to college athlete is not free and it’s clearly not a simple process.
Regardless of who you are or where you may be in recruiting, you’re going to have to spend some money.
The process of recruiting is basically about a student athlete putting their name out there to inform college programs that they are available to be recruited.
Recruiting is a long-term, ongoing investment in a student athlete’s college future but there are no guarantees on the outcome.
In other words, many parents have been known to spend thousands of dollars on the recruiting process on their son or daughter and they still may not receive a full athletic scholarship.
Money is required to make the necessary steps in recruiting but money has absolutely no bearing on whether a student athlete will receive a full athletic scholarship over another student athlete who has no money.
If you come from a rich family where money is not necessarily an issue, you cannot buy your way to a full athletic scholarship. Receiving an athletic scholarship still comes down to having talent. If it was possible that money could make a difference in recruiting then every rich student athlete would be playing at major college programs because they bought their way in!
Going to camp is a necessary process in recruiting and over a period of four or five summers, can be extremely expensive.
Some camps cost as much as $300 to participate and you may have to attend more than one camp during your summer vacations to receive the necessary exposure to get recruited for college.
The cost of club ball or travel team ball can be extremely expensive. Even though many of these teams raise money to off-set certain expenses you are still going to pay to be a member of the club or travel team.
Club ball is critical for the exposure of a student athlete. Being a member of the right club team, regardless of the sport, can often have a huge impact on the recruiting process.
Club ball is important because of the travel and the many tournaments that these teams play in. Many college coaches are in attendance at various tournaments around the country and it is another necessary step in the overall college recruiting process.
Maybe you’re on one club team and it’s not as successful as you would like, this could require you to change teams and incur another expense.
There are many important details throughout the college recruiting process that are necessary and will cost you money like having the DVD made. Getting copies of a DVD can be expensive. The packaging of the DVD, mailing the DVD along with other costs, cannot be avoided.
You cannot overlook the costs of recruiting. Somewhere along the way you are going to have to pay something; it cannot be avoided no matter who you are.
Recruiting Isn’t Just For the Rich
Maybe I’m right or maybe I’m wrong, but you do not have to come from an affluent background to have an advantage in the college recruiting process.
There are some people out there who may not be holding big dollars in the bank or who believe that the rich kids have the upper hand in recruiting giving them an advantage over all other student athletes. Money may help you to afford, let’s say, a personal trainer or to have a Hollywood-produced DVD that can be mailed to one hundred college programs in one day.
Money may allow a student athlete to travel to more unofficial visits or have perfectly crafted type-written letters mailed to a large number of college coaches on a consistent basis. Yes, there is a slight benefit if you have money when it comes to recruiting but, in my opinion, it still comes down to you having the talent.
Money cannot or will not make you a better athlete. Money cannot make you taller, run faster or jump higher than some kid who does not have any money. In my opinion, you’re almost better off if you did not have any money, which can probably make you work harder because of your financial situation.
I have personally competed against student athletes who came from affluent backgrounds and who did not have to struggle for too much of anything.
From what I experienced at that time, many of those athletes did not have the desire or the passion to succeed athletically. I believe the reason was they had the finances to back them up whether they succeeded or failed athletically.
Other student athletes, who are not so lucky to be born with a silver spoon in their mouth, had to work extremely hard every single day just to have the opportunity to even be considered for scholarships.
The rich kid from the suburbs already knew that they were going to go the college whether it was on athletic scholarship or not; they were born knowing that a college education was automatically in their future.
The student athlete who comes from a middle class background has everything to lose athletically if they do not work extremely hard for their scholarship. For many middle class and lower class student athletes, a full athletic scholarship may be the only way they will be able to attend college.
Those athletes have to give everything they’ve got each single day to improve and to gain the attention of college coaches.
I don’t think the same can be said for student athletes who come from upper middle class or affluent backgrounds, their futures and education has already been decided long before they started participating in athletics.
The college recruiting process is for the student athlete who can compete at the college level. Money has nothing to do with it.
Financially Strapped Families And The College Recruiting Process
Even though you do not have to possess great wealth to make the recruiting process work it is still going to require money to make something happen. Here is where the recruiting process can get twisted on behalf of families who are financially strapped:
Instead of spending thousands of dollars on the recruiting process and, more than likely, it’s money many families don’t have in the first place, many families will rely solely on the efforts of a high school coach who, in some cases, may be ill-prepared to deal with the daily details of the college recruiting process.
Because of the lack of finances to even deal with many of the small details of the college recruiting process some families will forgo entirely many important components of the college recruiting process.
We all know mailing a lot of letters to college coaches can add up and over the course of several years, can potentially be very expensive.
If your family’s in a financially troublesome situation you may just say, ‘Let’s forget about writing handwritten letters to college programs’ and instead take an easier approach by emailing college coaches.
You may think emailing these college programs is an easier approach but keep in mind, everyone else is emailing college coaches and it could present a problem where your email will not get read and may be lost among the many other emails coaches receive daily.
Financially strapped families have to come up with creative and cost affective ways to reach college coaches. This can be challenging when you’re working with a very limited budget.
Unfortunately, there are very few things that you can do as it relates to the college recruiting process that does not cost money.
Recruiting is so critical to the future of a high school student athlete that some families may have to make serious sacrifices to ensure college recruiting success and long lasting success while they’re still in college.
For example, families mainly need to work a second job or two to help offset the cost of recruiting or any other costs once the student athlete is in college.
The ultimate goal is for the student athlete to receive a full athletic scholarship and to earn a college degree.
Many middle class families can meet the financial responsibilities of the college recruiting process.
The families who are not as fortunate will need to rely on their student athlete having overwhelmingly superior athletic talent that will automatically attract college coaches.
What sometimes happens to student athletes who come from families who do not have the finances or the resources to apply to recruiting process is that they’ll generally take part in some post-season all-star games or exposure events that are mostly free for the athletes to participate in.
These types of events often only attract small college programs that play on the division two, division three or the N.A.I. A. levels.
Maybe a student athlete has superior talent and is clearly a major college player but because of family financial issues, can only gain the exposure of smaller colleges. This is the reality that many student athletes and families face.
All The Costs Associated With Recruiting: What Is It Really All For?
You don’t have to be a multi-millionaire to make something happen with the college recruiting process. If you are from a family that needs help financially, recruiting can be a challenge.
Here is what I think you need to spend your money on:
Postage: The cost of consistently mailing letters or DVD’s to college programs over the course of a high school student’s athletic career could cost somewhere in the of neighborhood of $500.00. Prices can vary depending on when you start contacting schools.
DVD: The DVD is a critical component in recruiting. College coaches are not always going to be at high school games. Getting a DVD made or professionally produced is important because this could be the first and only time a college coach can actually see a high school player in action.
Whether you get copies made or have it professionally done, I believe the cost could be somewhere in the neighborhood of $1,000 to $3,000. For example, you may need to get 100 copies of a DVD and the cases that the DVDs will be shipped in, which could cost $5 to $10 dollars per DVD (prices may vary).
Club team or travel team: Exposure is one of the most important pieces of the college recruiting puzzle.
You must be seen by college coaches in order for them to evaluate your talents. One of the best ways to accomplish this goal is to be apart of a good club team that travels and plays in tournaments all over the country.
Just about every sport has a club team, for example, AAU basketball, which is highly popular and beneficial to all the student athletes who play.
Many of these programs require a sizeable fee to become a member of a team. These costs could run anywhere from $300 to $500 per team. There may also be additional costs for meals and hotel stays. Many club programs try to do a good job of raising money to off-set certain costs.
There are many little expenses along the way. From your freshman year of high school until the day you graduate, there are going to be a lot of small expenses associated with the college recruiting process. The NCAA Clearinghouse is a requirement to prove eligibility. The cost, I believe, is around $75.00 to complete the registration process.
The fee required to take the SAT is in the neighborhood of $45 to $50 dollars and that’s just to take the test once.
If you’re smart, you should take the test every time it’s offered to improve your score to be eligible for college athletics. The costs could run up to $200 but it is necessary in the overall college recruiting process.
Some colleges and universities may require you to pay an application fee of $35 to $40 per school. Now in some situations, college athletic programs will waive the fee.
There are some school districts across the country that have what is called, “pay to play”, which basically means if high school student athletes want to participate in a particular sport then they will have to pay. The cost could vary anywhere from $200 to maybe $300 to play.
There are a lot of school districts across the country that may have these financial issues and this is their way to help offset the costs of high school athletics.
Other hidden costs could be the traveling back and forth to games, tournaments, and events. Gas prices are high and, over the course of an athletic season, this could run you $200 to $300 dollars just for gas.
The cost of athletic equipment such as uniforms, workout gear, and athletic shoes could also run you big money over the course of an athletic career. All the student athletes that play sports only want the brand name athletic gear and products.
Whatever approach you take towards the overall college recruiting process, just keep in mind that you’re going to have to spend some money.