If you want to play sports in college, you must invest in yourself to achieve your goal. Some investments require money and some require a time commitment, but these investments are in you and for you. It’s actually a combination of the two which will yield the best results. As a high school student athlete you must invest in your athletics, academics and promotion.
Earning a freshman roster spot and a scholarship is extremely difficult in the best case scenario. Athletes and their families who understand what it takes to play sports in college invest heavily in the student in the front end of the process and are rewarded with better offers on the back-end.
· Investing in academics is a time commitment rather than a dollar commitment. Invest the time to get the best possible grades and get rewarded with acceptance to more schools, better scholarship offers and fewer loans. Consider enrolling in SAT/ACT prep courses to help bolster those scores. Put in the extra time to get the GPA as high as possible. Take honors and AP classes in order to get a higher weighted GPA.
· Investing in athletics is also a time commitment; time spent at practice and games, time spent in the weight room, time spent training in off-season, time spent traveling to and from games. There is also a cost involved if you play on an AAU, Club or Premier Team. There are club costs, tournament costs, travel and meal costs, and cost for your family members who accompany you to these tournaments. But, this is part of the price you pay if you want to play at the next level.
· Investing in your own promotion is the other major expense. Now that you have built yourself into a competitive student-athlete, it’s time to let coaches know that you are a good student and a good athlete; and they want you on their team. Self-promotion takes time if you choose to do it on your own or there is a financial commitment if you engage a company to assist you. In the end, you will probably get out of it what you put into it. You should assume that coaches will not find you in the local newspapers and will not find your stats on a free website with thousands of other athletes.
Again, you must invest in yourself in order to separate yourself from the pack. Once you earn the freshman roster spot, all of your expenses vanish. The school pays for everything (except maybe shoes). The costs in high school may seem high, but in the big picture they are relatively small because the payoff in the form of a scholarship is huge.