Top 10 College Recruiting Tips



On the heels of the Fall National Signing Day, it’s only appropriate that our “Top 10” list this week offers a review of important things to know during the college recruiting process. We can’t promise these tips will land you a spot on the roster. And, we definitely can’t guarantee you’ll get that coveted scholarship offer. But, we can easily assure you that you will be among the most well-informed recruits in the entire world.
 

It’s called "STUDENT-athlete"
 
This one is pretty straightforward. In order to compete at the collegiate level, you have to take care of business in high school. Hit the books.
 
*It is important to note that your Junior year of high school is when you must register with the NCAA Clearinghouse*


What values are important to you? 
 
Would you consent to marry someone if the only thing you knew about them was their name, favorite colors and where they lived? Highly Doubtful.
 
Similar to the dating and courtship model, you have a set of characteristics you look for in your ideal “bae.” Before even looking at a college you should have a predetermined list of what you exactly you are looking for in a school. You’re looking to engage in a long-term relationship of at least four years with your intended school, so you want to be able enjoy your entire college experience, outside of the gym. Things like climate, distance/proximity from your hometown, college rankings, school size, rigor of academic programs, campus size, class size, and prominence of the athletic program could all potentially factor into your decision. 


Do the DUE. Due diligence that is.
 
Do your research! If you don’t already know, find out which colleges and universities have gymnastics. Know the rankings. Research the programs. What’s the team/coaching staff like? Does your personality fit? More importantly, find out about the schools themselves. Does it offer majors/academic programs that appeal to you? What’s the campus culture like?


Make multiple lists
 
On the safe side, you should never have just one list of potential schools. We suggest you have at least five. It may sound like a lot of work, but they can be as short or as long, and as simple or elaborate as you’d like. Here are our college list theme suggestions:
 
- List 1: “My Dream School(s)”
- List 2: “MY Top 10 Schools With Gymnastics”
- List 3: “If I Didn’t Do Gymnastics” Schools (e.g. colleges/universities that you’d like to attend even if you weren’t on the team, or possibly even schools without gymnastics)
- List 4: “Schools I Could Realistically Get Into” (i.e. both athletically and academically. Be honest with yourself!)
- List 5: Overlap of 1-4

Ideallly, you should end up with a few choices that survived the cross-check. List 5 will give you the schools that are most likely to provide you with a "win-win" college experience. Definitely a good place to start.


Be Proactive 
 
No, we aren’t talking about acne treatment. We’re talking about being someone who takes initiative. There are no NCAA rules preventing you, the athlete, from contacting schools to let them know you’re interested.
 
 
Make your presence known
 
Long-gone are the days when college coaches had to physically attend club meets to watch prospects. More recently gone are the days when you had to send in a video or even a DVD. Coaches still want to see your gymnastics, they just want to be able to access it anytime, anywhere. How do you assist them, you ask? Two words: Social. Media. Create a YouTube Channel and put your best meets up. It would also be to your benefit if you made a highlight reel, or a single video that showcases your best routines on each event, as well as the upgrades you’re working. 
 
Another great way to get on the radar is to attend camps during the summer.  Many schools host multi-day gymnastics camps in the offseason that grant prospects not only the chance to showcase their skill, but to work with college coaches and interact with team members on a more personal basis.
 
Each NCAA prospect is allowed up to five (5) “official” -expense paid visits to schools their senior year. Way before you get to that point, you should take as many unofficial visits as you are physically and financially capable of.  You can only learn but so much about a person or place on the phone or internet. Contact the coaches, and let them know you’re coming. Also, schedule an appointment with an academic advisor. Be sure to ask lots of questions!
 
 
Be prepared for rejection
 
We all want to get into our “dream” school, but what happens when too many of those dreams overlap? Everyone wants to go to a school that wins conference and championship titles, but realistically there are few who qualify at that caliber of gymnast. There are only but so many spots on the roster and even fewer open scholarships. Be prepared for the possibility that you may not get in to not only your dream school but potentially any of your Top 5 schools. 

 
Be open to all possibilities
 
There’s this thing called life, and it happens. Whether it’s rejection from your favorite schools or an unforeseen injury, you don’t want to “put all your eggs in one basket.” Don’t plan your life around one school until the ink is completely dry on your National Letter of Intent, or until you open the thick letter with the “ACCEPTED” sticker on it. You’ll end up empty-handed, broken-hearted and panicked. 
 
Remember those values that were important to you when it came to choosing a school? Your contingency plan will be to explore options that don’t have all, but a majority of the characteristics you’re looking for. You never know! You may find that little something that wins you over on a school you weren’t even considering.
 
 
Patience is a virtue
 
The recruiting process usually takes place over a number of months, even years. There’s a million moving parts to every single spot on a roster.It requires extreme patience to survive the painfully long procedure especially due to NCAA restrictions on the number of times and methods of contact a coach can have with a prospect. 
 
If you’re getting offers or interest early, chances are, there will be more to come. Be patient until the right school for you comes along.
 
 
USE THEM AS MUCH AS THEY WILL USE YOU
 
Enough said. College athletics is a billion dollar industry and they make their money off of your blood, sweat and tears. Use the information and contacts you’ve gained throughout the process to get you where you want to be life.
 
 
 
A special thanks to my former coach, teammates and friends for helping me compile this list: Amy Martelli, Rachel Edelson, Alix Croop, Andrea Arlotta, Georgina Nembhard, Jaleesa Rhoden

What You Need To Know Before The 2019 Melbourne World Cup

The 2019 Gymnastics World Cup is being hosted this year in Melbourne, Australia, and will be a huge event. Just one year before the 2020 Olympics, having the 2019 World Cup in Melbourne is a huge honor for Gymnastics Australia. Athletes from 32 different countries will compete in the multi-day competition, where the first two days are spent in qualifications, and then the top eight athletes in each event move on to the finals.

8 Teams Favored To Make NCGA Nationals In 2019

This year the NCGA National Championships are hosted at University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh, and although every team in the division hopes to see itself there, only six can qualify. Which teams snag a spot at nationals depends what happens at regionals, where the top three teams from the East Region and the WIAC secure a berth to the national tournament. With a little over five weeks left to go until competition day, here are eight teams that have a good shot at winning the title. 

Winter Cup Features A Bevy Of Oklahoma Gymnasts

Colin Van Wicklen has been before. In fact, the former Oklahoma Sooner has made five previous trips to the Winter Cup Challenge dating back to his prep years in Magnolia, Texas.

Freshman Feature: University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Gymnast Rahdea Jarvis

FloGymnastics is starting a new series that showcases college gymnasts competing in their freshman season. This inaugural freshman feature highlights Rahdea Jarvis from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.

Senior Spotlight: West Virginia Gymnastics' Kirah Koshinski

In the return of this ongoing series, FloGymnastics features collegiate gymnasts who are in their final season. Next up is West Virginia star Kirah Koshinski.

Recognition Rolls In For Florida Freshman Trinity Thomas

The early part of the 2019 season has seen several freshmen catapult onto the scene and create lightning for their teams, but few have shined as brightly as Florida’s Trinity Thomas.

What To Watch On FloGymnastics This Week

With the winter weather raging on, it’s looking like another good weekend to stay in and watch gymnastics! (Although, to be honest, we think every weekend is perfect for that, no matter what the weather’s like.) Luckily, FloGymnastics is streaming a number of meets live, so whether you love rhythmic, NCAA, club or tumbling and tramp, you’ll have lots to watch this weekend.

FloSports Brings FIG World Cups to Canadian Gymnastics Fans

AUSTIN, Texas – February 12, 2019 — Today, FloSports, the innovator in live digital sports and original content, announced a partnership with Dentsu to provide live and on-demand coverage of all Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique (FIG) World Cup and World Challenge Cups exclusively in Canada through 2020 on FloGymnastics.com.

8 NCAA Teams Prepare To Compete At The GymQuarters Mardi Gras Invitational

The GymQuarters Mardi Gras Invitational, taking place Feb. 15 in St. Charles, Missouri, is hosting not only a club gymnastics meet this year but also inviting some of the top NCAA teams to compete. This exciting meet has two NCAA competitions, with four teams in each. 

10 NCAA Leotards We're Loving This Season

Gymnastics isn’t all about the leotards, but it certainly is a fun part of the sport! Seeing your favorite team debut a new leotard only makes their incredible tricks and flips flashier and more exciting to watch. So many teams are competing in gorgeous leotards this year it was difficult to only pick 10 to showcase, but here are FloGymnastics’ favorite leotards of the 2019 season so far.