Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Playing Field Leveled for High School Athletes Applying to College


I was very pleased to read the December 18th Wall Street Journal article “The Do-It-Yourself Athletic Scholarship” by Matthew Futterman:
Coaches and recruiters easily notice top-tier talent in big-name sports. But mid-level high-school athletes or those in lesser-known sports often pay high-priced private consultants to connect them with coaches. With fees ranging from $700 to $5,000, the system has been expensive for students and inefficient for coaches – who get scouting recommendations only on kids who can afford to pay the consultants.

Now, do-it-yourself services have emerged that allow student athletes to showcase their abilities for a fraction of the price. Aside from beRecruited.com, other sites include Prepchamps.com, TRUpreps.com (owned by CBS Corp.’s MaxPreps unit), ActiveRecruiting.com, Collegecoaches.net and SportsWorx.com. There are also numerous sport-specific sites.
This is a wonderful leveling of the playing field for high school athletes. And as a mother who a few years ago had to learn everything on her own about helping a child who wanted to participate in a particular NCAA Division 1 college sport, I can only say that this is a wonderful use of the internet.

And as I’ve said before in another context, don’t assume that the sport a teen plays in high school is not of interest to a college. Do the research to find out what colleges might be interested in that sport, and then use these online showcases to put a teen’s athletic skills in the public eye.

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