There are two important questions you have to ask yourself if you want athletics to help you gain admission to college.
1. How badly do you want to play your sport at the college level?
If your answer is, “Not that badly, but I’ll do it if it will help me get in,” then college athletics won’t likely be in your future.
Think of it this way. If you were considering who to ask the to prom and you heard one of the people you were considering say this about you, “I don’t want to go prom with him, but I guess I would if nobody else asked me,” would you take that as a good sign?
Of course you wouldn’t. She doesn’t want to go with you. And it doesn’t sound like you’d be having a good time together anyways.
College coaches don’t want you if the only reason you’re expressing interest is to get admitted to the school. That’s why coaches don’t just evaluate your talent; they make every effort to evaluate your desire to play at the college level. Coaches have a limited number of spaces to fill on their teams. They want to know that the people who agree to fill those spaces will be dedicated athletes, not people who will quit as soon as they move into the dorms.
2. “How good am I?”
Are you recognized as being a good athlete at the county level, state level, or national level? Have your coaches or opposing coaches suggested that you have the ability to compete at the collegiate level? Does your success in my high school sports career seem similar that of the high school careers of athletes who are
currently playing your sport at the collegiate level?
To help you answer this last question, visit the websites of 7-10 schools that interest you. Go to the athletic section, look up your sport, and read the biographies of all of the players. Within these biographies, there will almost always be information on their high school careers. This will help you gage your sports success against athletes that were recruited by this particular school.
If most of the players were all-league, captains, MVP etc. and you are achieving these same accolades, you might have found a good
athletic match at this school. If, however, all of the athletes were featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated while still in high school, and you surmise that you not at the same level,
you may want to investigate some different schools.
You have to ask yourself both–and you have to answer them honestly.