This week BeRecruited sat down with recently committed athlete, Emily Dixon, to go over her recruiting process. Our hope is that you can take away some tips from her experience!
Name: Emily Dixon
College: University of Toldeo
Q & A with Emily
Q: While in high school, what other teams and/or sports were you playing? Did you know all along you wanted to play golf in college?
A: In high school I just played golf. I have been playing in golf tournaments since I was 6 years old so once I got to high school the main goal was to get a scholarship for golf. I knew that I wanted to play golf in college all along.
Q: Why did you ultimately choose the University of Toledo? How many other schools were you looking at? When did you start getting interest from coaches?
A: When I went on a visit to this college I loved the coach, the campus, and the girls on the team. I felt welcome and comfortable there. I was looking at about 5 colleges at the time. I also was waiting on one college’s scholarship offer. However, after visiting the University of Toledo, I knew what my decision would be.
I started getting interest from colleges my freshman year in high school, but they really started getting interested my junior year. Some colleges were coming to me, but the ones that I liked the most, I reached out to them. Every day I would come home from school and look up schools and find coaches’ email addresses. I emailed them my transcript, swing video, scores, and a little biography about myself.
Q: Who was pivotal in helping you through the recruiting process and why?
A: My parents (Matt and Tracey Dixon), my swing coach (Alecia Larsen) and my fitness trainer (Leigh Anderson) were all pivotal in helping me through the recruiting process because they were always there and they always helped me out.
My parents, especially, were a big help in the process -- by coming with me on my visits and just being there. My parents have put me in tournaments since I was 6 years old and have always been there to support me. When it came to the recruiting process my parents did everything they could to help me get my name out there. When I was at school my parents were looking up different colleges for me. My parents are very supportive of what I do, and always have been.
Another person I did not mention is the Toledo Saint Ursula HS girls’ golf coach. I was at a tournament this fall and he talked to me about my college plans. At the time I hadn’t even looked at the University of Toledo but he asked for my information so that he could give it to the coach. He called me the day after the tournament and said he had talked to Coach Hollingsworth about me and that she would be looking into me. The very next day I got an email from her wanting more information and for me to come for a visit. If it wasn’t for this high school coach I probably wouldn’t be where I am today.
Q: What role did you club and/or high school coaches have in helping you get recruited?
A: My high school coach was fairly new but she was a lot of help. She was one of my references that I gave to Coach Hollingsworth.
Q: What was the most challenging part of the recruiting process, if any?
A: The most challenging part of the process was probably just trying to get my name out there, and getting coaches to notice me. I can shoot low but I didn’t play in a lot of the bigger tournaments so some of my competitors were getting their name out there easier than me. I really had to put my game face on and play the best I could to get myself noticed.
Q: To date, what do you consider to be your biggest accomplishment in your sport career?
A: I would say that making it to the Ohio State tournament my junior year (2010) was a pretty big moment for me. In our district, only 2 individuals can qualify to go to states, and the competition is tough. When I got to states I knew I had to prove to everyone, and myself, that I could compete with the best in the state. I ended up placing 11th in the state tournament. I was proud of myself and it gave me a boost of confidence that I really think helped for my senior year.
Q: What tips or advice do you have for student-athletes who want to continue their sport past high school?
A: Don’t wait till the last minute! I started a little later than everyone else on looking for colleges and it is very stressful. You don’t want to go through that. At least start looking at colleges your sophomore year.
Email and call coaches to let them know you are interested; they aren’t just going to come to you. Also, take your ACT and/or SAT as soon as you can too to familiarize yourself with them. And lastly, keep records starting your freshman year; coaches like to see that and how much you’ve improved over the year. I used Microsoft Excel and kept records for all four years. I hope my advice helps! I’ve been through this and I promise that it’s all worth it in the end!
Q: How did BeRecruited help you make the connection with your committed college?
A: When I got onto BeRecruited.com I would go to different college’s profiles and I would see whether they had my major and my sport. If I saw that they had both of these things then I would bookmark them and then get in contact with the coaches. BeRecruited also helped me to get my name out there to coaches who used the website.
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