If you are reading this article then congratulations on wanting to take your athletic career to the next level. Having been through the football recruiting process myself, the information I will provide you with below will go a long way towards helping you secure at least one football scholarship offer by the time national signing day during your senior year of high school comes around. Read on to learn all the tips you need to know to land a football scholarship.
First things first. Its important that you get started as early as possible with training and developing your body and athletic abilities. You need to be training in the weight room as early as the eight grade in order to start developing muscle strength, explosiveness, and power. It is also important that you start working on your speed and agility as well as skills specific drill that pertain to your position on the football field. Getting a certified trainer or sports trainer may be a good idea but you can buy your own equipment and train with your teammates on your own. For a variety of instructional videos and articles on football drills and exercises to perform, visit www.stack.com.
Next, its important that you be doing what you have to do to succeed in the classroom. I would recommend you maintain a rigorous class schedule in order to challenge yourself in the classroom all throughout high school. If you have trouble with certain school subjects, then consider getting a tutor or seeking extra help from your teacher(s). You will find out soon enough that grades are important because without a high enough GPA and test score there is no way a college football coach can even recruit you let alone offer you a football scholarship. More on that in the next step.
You should also make it a point to take the ACT and/or SAT test early in your high school career, ideally during your freshman or sophomore year. This will give you plenty of time to get acclimated to the test and to get a score that will get you accepted into any college that may offer you a football scholarship. Remember, most colleges have a certain overall GPA, core class curriculum, and SAT and/or ACT test score that you must meet in order for you to be admitted into their college by the admissions office. There are no exceptions. No matter how talented you are, if you don't have the grades to be approved by the college's admissions office then the coach will have to rescind on his scholarship offer and move onto the next athlete
You should next get together as much game footage as possible to put together a highlight tape to market your athletic talent. Work with your high school coach on this one or someone who can record all of your games and is good at editing film if possible. You want to include two games from the previous season and around 15-20 of your best plays from the season on a highlight tape. College coaches want to see you scoring touchdowns, making interceptions, making big time plays, and showcasing your athletic ability. Also, make sure the coach is able to identify where you are on the field in each play. Be sure your tape has your jersey number and your position written clearly on it.
After you have established yourself and have some good plays and game performances to put on tape, you want to make a list of 20-50 colleges with football teams that you are interested in and contact the coaching staff. Be sure to speak with either the head coach or the coach that recruits your area and express your interest in their program and potentially playing for them. Make sure you are alert, sounds genuinely interested in what the coach has to say, and that you are asking lots of questions. You should get involved your high school coach and/or parents involved in the process as the college coach is going to want to speak to them later on about your character and athletic abilities.
You also want to request that a athletic questionnaire to be mailed to your house or if you can find it on the computer, fill out the questionnaire on the official athletic site of the football teams you're interested in. This will give the coaches vital information about yourself like your measurables, speed, size, and grades. This will also help make the coaches aware of you as a potential prospect.
You should next send the coaches the highlight tape of yourself performing. Allow the coach who recruits your area reasonable time to evaluate it. Follow up after a week or two to see if your game film was received. If the coach is genuinely interested in you, then he will get back in touch with you and continue with the recruiting process. If not, then move on to the next school you are interested in.
You want to start going to as many football camps as possible starting your freshman to sophomore year of high school. You should go to the camps of schools you are interested in and to camps that are hosted by recruiting websites like www.rivals100 and the Underarmour combines. These websites have important rankings they do that can help you with your recruiting. If you are ranked high on a website like www.rivals100.com or www.scout.com then chances are college coaches know about you, so keep that in mind. Also, when going to these camps, its important that you go with the mindset that you are there to impress the coaches in attendance and to earn a football scholarship. Make it a point to be the first in line during every drill and to dominate during all of the competition and drills during the camp. If you are athletically gifted enough and the coaches like what they see, more likely than not you are going to walk away with a football scholarship depending on circumstances like if you are a senior or a rising prospect and if the coaches already know about you and are recruiting you. Don't be suprised if you go to a camp with numerous coaches in attendance and perform well enough at the camp thjat you receive numerous scholarship offers the same day. It has happened for many high profile athletes like Terrelle Pryor, Nigel Bradham, and others. Treat every camp you go to like a business trip!
Lastly, you needs to dominate on the football field. You have to be scoring touchdowns, making interceptions, taking over games, leading your team to victory, and just plain dominating against top level competition. If you are not playing the top competition in the state, then if at all possible, transfer to a bigger and better high school. This is how you are going to become one of the top players in the country for football. Remember, big players make big plays in big games.
In conclusion, if you have good grades and a good enough ACT or SAT test score, if you are a physically dominating player, if you contact college coaches directly and work with your high school coach, parents, and mentor to make yourself known, if you go to a ton of football camps and training camps and dominate, then you can secure football scholarship offers. It takes a lot of dedication and its very time consuming becoming a top prospect. You have to have a supporting cast that will help you develop at a young age but it can be done. Even if you aren't talented enough to get division one offers from big time colleges like Ohio State, USC, or Florida for example, there are many division two colleges and division three colleges that offer football scholarships and in the case of division three schools which don't offer football scholarships, some type of financial aid package. If you are not fortunate enough to have the opportunity of picking what college you want to play for or if you don't have division one scholarship offers, then don't limit yourself. If you are talented enough, there are many division 1AA or division two and division three schools you can make your home. Don't settle! In conclusion, work hard and remain dedicated. Good Luck!