Who Has College Basketball Potential?
“All I want to do is ball Coach”, “I want to play D1 Coach”, “I’m better than (insert Division 1 commit here).” I’ve heard it all time and time again. My usual response to these statements is “I hear you but your actions have to match up with your words.” Then I’ll follow that statement with “don’t worry about the level, just go where you can play your game and have a great experience.” Nothing is wrong with shooting for the stars (D1 scholarship) because if you fall short and end up with a scholarship to a lower level school you are still luckier than most of the basketball population. So what’s the difference between the players who actually receive college scholarships and the players who don’t? To answer that question we first have to look at what type of players get scholarships.
Athletes with college talent, college size, college connections, good character, perseverance, and competitive drive, are the first in line to receive scholarships. These attributes will only get you so far without good grades
Players who have college talent, college size, good grades, college connections (connected to the right people), good character, perseverance, and a competitive drive will have the advantage when it comes to being apart of the select few who receive an athletic college scholarship to a Division I school. High school athletes who possess these attributes will be the first in line to receive scholarships but not all players will have all of the previously mentioned qualities. Of all the mentioned qualities there are many that players actually control themselves while qualities like college size, and college talent are traits that are God given.
Of all the traits a scholarship athlete will have that will allow them to make it to the next level only the absence of qualifying grades, will for sure keep an athlete from playing sports at the DI or DII level. If you take a look at all the division 1 schools in the NCAA, you will surely find a few athletes who aren’t that talented or who are undersized. What you won’t find in the lineup are players who did not meet the academic standards of the NCAA because qualifying academically should be the focus of every serious high school athlete who desires to play college sports.
How do you qualify academically for NCAA sports?
*To qualify to receive an athletic scholarship to a division 1 or division 2 school differs slightly, the process is long and will require your attention starting your freshman year of high school through graduation.
!!! Major Key!!! Start your freshman year and register with the NCAA Eligibility Center . Once registered you will be able to track progress to see if you are on track for qualifying for an athletic scholarship to a DI or DII school. By registering you will make it easier for College Coaches to see your status, which makes it easier for you to be offered a scholarship when the time comes. The fee to register with NCAA Eligibility Center may be waived depending on your school make sure to check with your counselor before you pay the fee.
Grades and Courses
To qualify you must take 16 core courses in the required subject areas. The NCAA uses these courses to determine your GPA. Not all elective courses will not count towards your qualifying GPA (example. Physical Education or Culinary courses)
To qualify you need to take certain core courses (NCAA Core Course Requirements ) in high school and pass those courses with the highest grade possible. !!Major Key!! Talk to your school academic counselor to make sure you are on track to graduate and take all these required courses along the way. Not all high school counselors assume you want to play college athletics and not all are aware of these requirements. Take ownership of your education to ensure you do not take repeat classes or lower level core classes that do not count towards core-course requirement.
In order to qualify for an athletic scholarship to a Division 1 or Division 2 school you must earn qualifying test scores on the ACT or SAT. The score needed for you to qualify depends on your GPA in the 16 core closes required by the NCAA, the lower your GPA the higher your ACT/SAT score needs to be to qualify.
Once you have worked hard to secure a respectable core GPA you will need to score a qualifying score on the SAT or ACT. Players who are on top of their academics might start to take the practice SAT/ACT as early as their sophomore year of high school in order increase their chances of qualifying their Senior year. A great free test resource is Khan Academy. Your school counselors will also have resources for you to use, practice often so you reach the highest score you are capable of. The score needed to qualify is determined by your core GPA, student athletes with higher GPA’s can afford to score lower on the SAT/ACT and still qualify. If you don’t know what score you need you can find that information here NCAA Sliding Scale, for Division II look here NCAA Division II Sliding Scale. For example Player A has a 2.3 Core GPA (the lowest GPA allowed to qualify for a D1 scholarship) needs to score a 980 on his SAT and a 75 on his ACT in order to qualify for Division 1 scholarship. Player B worked worked just as hard in the classroom as he did on the court and earned a 3.4 GPA in his core classes. Player B because of his hard work in the classroom only needs to score a 490 SAT score and 42 on his ACT in order to qualify. If either player decided to go the Division 2 route they would also follow a sliding scale that varies slightly from the the Division 1 scale. Once your required test score has been achieved uploading your transcript to you clearinghouse profile will solidify your status as qualified. It is important that you earn the highest possible GPA and test score to ensure you have the best chance of meeting your schools admission requirements.
Qualifying for an athletic scholarship doesn’t have to be overwhelming but it can be. Remember It’s YOUR future so don’t wait around for coaches are anybody else to do the work for you take ownership of your future. The best part about taking the above steps to ensure you are in the best possible situation to receive an athletic scholarship is that you will put your self in a position to also receive an academic scholarship. In the case you are not one of the chosen few who receive a full athletic scholarship you will can still go to college and earn an education. Securing your future by taking care of business off the court will ensure that you use the game and don’t let the game use you.