Deciding whether or not you want to play lacrosse in college will take some thought and lots of research. Below you will find some question that you will need to answer for yourself and some tips on how to nai
The number of recruiting events has grown tremendously. All events are not created equal. It is imperative to go to the camps/showcases attended by the schools you would like to play for at the next level. Attend an event with purpose and a plan! Remember, you do not go to recruiting events to be discovered. You go to be seen by schools that already know about you, but want to see more. There are a few guiding principles to consider (courtesy of LaxPower).
Is this a school you would attend if you weren’t playing lacrosse? Every college coach will tell you to choose the schools you want to attend first and then look at their lacrosse programs. Think about the answers to the following questions to help you decide. If your answers are not a fairly emphatic "yes," perhaps you should be looking elsewhere. Is this the school you would still attend if...
There is a school and a lacrosse program for anyone who wants one. It just takes a little effort on your part to find the right match.
You will want to look at admission requirements, majors, size, location, social life and, of course, cost. Couple this with all the lacrosse decisions like division, scholarships, competitiveness, coach style, players and their personalities, and whether I can play there or not.
Whatever the criteria, most experts agree that a starting list of 15-25 target colleges meeting your criteria is reasonable and manageable at the early stage. Don't wait to see who comes to you.
Create a spreadsheet like THIS ONE and include all of the categories and any other ones that might be important to you.
It's important to develop relationships with as many coaches as you can! We recommend setting up an email account that you will use specifically for recruiting.
College coaches belong to a small fraternity, and many are good friends. On occasion, they even share information about top athletes and assist each other with recruiting (assuming they are not rivals in the same conference). If they are already stocked for your position, they may recommend you to a different coach.
Coaching contacts may be obtained from the USILA, IWLCA, and other major web sites. You can also find coaches' contact information at most team web sites. Put the email address for the head coach and your position coach in your spreadsheet. Email them when you will be attending a showcase or a camp in their area and tell them you would love it if they could make it to watch you play. In your spreadsheet, keep track of who and when you email and when you get a response.
Players and parents need to be realistic about their ability to make the team and play competitively at the school(s) of interest. It is difficult for many of us to gauge the ability of a player when we only play in the southeast region. If you want to see how you measure up, we suggest attending a camp or showcase in a region where you would like to attend college.
Parents, it's wonderful when a coach shows interest in your child. But remember, the coach has probably shown the same interest in other recruits who play that position. Your son may be the coach's "top recruit," but that will last only until another player gets in first. Don't let the recruiting process go to your head ... or your child's!
Unless you are a truly exceptional lacrosse player, you are not #1 on every coach's recruit wish list. In fact, you may well not even be on their radar. If that's the case, you will have to find out for yourself who might be interested in you, which will require some "marketing." You will also need to keep in mind that a coach may not recruiting for your son’s specific position for their graduation year.
Both players and parents also need a realistic assessment of the player's ability to handle the academic workload. Their ability to be comfortable academically will be impacted by the time and travel demands made by playing college athletics, especially at the Division 1 level. Record any information you get on your spreadsheet!
Don’t be fooled into thinking that Division 2, 3 or NAIA isn’t a huge commitment. Those programs want to win as badly as Division 1 programs! There will be mandatory weight lifting and practice everyday along with other required commitments such as study hours and volunteer work.
It is important to be honest with both yourself and the coaches on how great of a fit a school or lacrosse program is for you.
If you are not completely comfortable with a school or a situation, that may be the best indicator that the school is not the right choice for you, so don't get pressured into making a premature decision.
By the same token, "no" is the second best response that a coach can get from a recruit. Although they may be disappointed, they now know where you stand and can move on to their next best prospect.
Let’s say this again…You need to really want to attend a school even if you weren’t playing lacrosse. Think about the things you really want to experience in college and make sure the school you choose has those things.
Is the school the size you want? Does it have the majors you are interested in? Is it in a location where you would be happy? If it is a small area, is it close to a big city? What is the campus like? Are there are other sports where you would enjoy being a fan?
What Division is this school in and do you think you will get playing time immediately or will you have to wait until you are an upperclassman?
If you simply want to continue playing lacrosse, the club level is also very competitive and a great way to get involved without the major time commitment of Division 1, 2, 3, or NAIA!
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