So you are looking for your darling daughter ("DD") to get an athletic scholarship to play softball in college? Great. Who can blame you? With the cost of college continuing to spiral out of control why not leverage a game your DD loves and is pretty good at into $$ for tuition and room/board.
Depending on where your DD is on her softball path you, as a sports parent, need desperately to develop a solid game plan for how you (and family) and your DD will traverse the rocky ledges of the college softball scholarship maze.
It's a game that has big winners and big losers, and a game with a lot of misinformation and lack of clear information. Most softball parents I know always seem frantic, like they are going to miss out on an exposure opportunity for their DD. They have no strategic plan, so they bounce around like a pinball going from camp to clinic to showcase to colleges.
Let's put it this way, as a sports parent what you need is a Facebook-type "timeline" to follow for your DD so that you are prepared physically, emotionally and monetarily for the travel softball to softball scholarship journey.
As I am nearing the completion of my newest book, College Softball Scholarships: The A to Z Guide, I'm going to share with you 6 Crucial Tips for staying ahead of the curve on the college softball scholarship timeline.
These should help you to at least start an effective game plan of the process, some "do s" and "don't s," and solid strategies for moving forward. So enjoy this food for thought.
So, here we go with the 6 Crucial Tips to stay ahead of the softball scholarship curve:
Tip #1 - Start the process earlier than you ever thought necessary. As more and more colleges ramp up their softball programs the competition among colleges for athletes is intensifying! Many colleges are now actively recruiting 8th and 9th graders. Yes, it's crazy...as even college coaches tell me, but those are the recruiting rules of the game in 2014. This means you really need to develop your recruiting plan NOW. Top pitchers are committing earlier than ever before, and athletic money is drying up at many top colleges earlier as well as they commit their senior, junior and sophomore (in high school) recruits early on, leaving them with the 9th and 8th graders to target.
What this really means is doing all you can to put your DD in an optimal position to be seen by her target schools. It all starts with communication. The NCAA has very clearly defined rules for contact between a college coach and potential recruits which you should become intimately familiar with. Here's agood place to start, the NCAA Eligibility Center. As well you'll need to put together a good skills video and post it on YouTube so college coaches can readily view it via a link you include in your DD's email to the coach. You may want to check out other softball players' skills videos on YouTube to get some ideas.
Be proactive in contacting your target colleges. Remember, start NOW with all of the things mentioned in this article. Delay at your DD's own peril!
Tip #2 - Developing a "target list" of schools. Don't let Tip #1 scare you. As a softball parent you are still and always remain "in control" of the recruiting process for your DD. The best way to avoid making a ton of mistakes along the way is to sit down with your DD and start having a serious discussion about…
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Thanks for reading!
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