Monday, 18 June 2012 22:21

Recruiting Tips: Ten Misconceptions to Avoid

Written by Jill Hicks

10 Misconceptions To Avoid In The Recruiting Process

Here are ten common misconceptions to avoid during the recruiting process:

  1. “I only want to compete for a Top 10 gymnastics team in college”: Your focus should be on finding the right fit both academically and athletically even if it is not one of the Top 10 gymnastics teams.
  2. “My club coach is going to get me a scholarship”: Many club coaches are very helpful in making connections, but do not rely on this.
  3. “If I am a walk-on I will be treated differently”: This is a great question to ask the college coach. Typically the walk-on athlete is expected to do the same as any other athlete on the team and treated the same as well.
  4. “Small colleges have weak gymnastics teams”: Check out the online videos (like on YouTube.com or Gymnastike), it might surprise you how strong the smaller schools are and how the skill level has grown in the past 5 years.
  5. “I am only applying to my first choice schools”: It is best to have several “back up” options just in case you do not get accepted to your first choices.
  6. “Coaches will only notice me if I compete at Level 10 Nationals”: Coaches realize injuries, illness and other things happen for gymnast. Receiving a phone call and your webpage with an email can be just as “eye catching” to the college coaches.
  7. “The gymnastics college coach must want me since I keep receiving academic information”: Sometimes the college coach may not even know the school is sending academic information to you. Academic information is typically prompted by your test scores from high school.
  8. “I don’t need to tell the college coaches about ‘all’ my injuries”: Starting the relationship with honesty and integrity is very important.
  9. “I have to be strong on all four events to receive an athletic scholarship”: Many coaches are looking for the All-Around gymnast, but you never know when they might need an athlete on three or two events that you may excel at.
  10. “I am only considering colleges where I can receive a full athletic scholarship”: Don’t limit your options in the beginning. If you find a school that has your academic interest you may be eligible for academic and athletic combined scholarship.

About Jill Hicks:

Jill Hicks is a former elite gymnast, Division I college athlete, club coach and Division I college gymnastics coach (Cal State Fullerton, Oregon State) and the owner of Jill Hicks Consulting, where she provides recruiting services and choreography for prospective student-athletes and their families. For further information visit: www.jhicksconsulting.com

Editor's Note:  Publication of this article is not an endorsement of any recruiting service.  Always check with the NCAA or your school's compliance officer for any questions regarding recruiting rules, the latest timelines, or other issues.

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