COLLEGE SOCCER RECRUITING
College soccer is growing in popularity all the time, especially women’s college soccer which is one of the fastest growing intercollegiate sports due to the increase in participation at a young age and the application of title IX. Playing college soccer is also a great way to get drafted after graduation if you’re interested in playing at the USL (United Soccer Leagues), MLS (Major League Soccer) and WPS (Women’s Professional Soccer) levels.
The explosive growth of intercollegiate soccer has really improved the quality of the game at the college level. Contact college soccer coaches and learn about roster positions and scholarship opportunities at your favorite schools. Remember that you’re not only competing against student athletes from your state or country, but also the international athletes that want to come to the United States, gain a scholarship and play at the intercollegiate level.
Soccer is an equivalency sport in the NCAA which simply means that partial scholarships can be awarded to both men and women as long as the combination of all the scholarships do not exceed the allocation limits.
College soccer is played at 1034 NCAA affiliated schools. 331 Division I colleges can allocate 9.9 soccer scholarships for men and 14 for women. 257 Division II colleges offer 9 scholarships for men and 9.9 for women. 446 NCAA Division III colleges play intercollegiate soccer. There are no athletic scholarships awarded at this level but quite often other forms of financial aid may be available.
204 NAIA colleges sponsor intercollegiate soccer. 14 soccer scholarships are on offer to both men and women. Soccer classed as an equivalency sport in the NAIA.
236 Junior colleges play competitive soccer. 18 soccer scholarships are available for both men and women.
Here are some things you can do to improve your chances of playing soccer at college level.
- Grades. Without good grades and a good GPA you won’t get recruited. College coaches want to recruit athletes who will keep their academic eligibility throughout college.
- Soccer Profile. Get a head start on your competitors and build your free recruiting profile now. A recruiting profile is the best way to gain exposure and maximize your opportunities.
- ODP (Olympic development program). While it is important that you play for your high school and a good club, you should also consider getting involved with the ODP. Try-outs are open to soccer club members and if you make your state team then you are well on your way to getting recruited. Participation in the ODP has helped many soccer players get recruited and gain soccer scholarships. You have a higher chance of being spotted at an ODP regional camp than a local high school game, thus giving you an advantage in the college soccer recruiting process.
Check out some additional resources available at US SOCCER. The earlier you start the recruiting process the more opportunities you will have.