05 Jun Recruiting Story: The Grades that Lost the Dollars
The year was 2012. A father brought in his son, a football player who was a bit unfocused. There is only so much a parent can do when their child is surrounded by an element of his peers who are not focused on success. That can be a very big distraction for a young person especially an athlete who wants to compete in college.
This athlete, we will call him Carter, had the talent and ability to be a Division I level athlete, but he was allowing himself to follow the paths of his friends. In high school there are many students who really have no direction. They don’t compete in athletics, and they don’t get good grades. Many of those people will wind up not doing much after they graduate from high school. And those people who won’t succeed will almost always try to distract the people who want to succeed. Misery loves company, so does laziness. Peer pressure gets in the way far too often. Carter was letting them get in the way of his success.
But Carter was not exempt from criticism. He made his own mistakes. Carter didn’t like to study. He was a very smart young man, but not focused. He found it more fun to be one of the guys, be the cool football player and do just enough to get by. He really never understood how his decisions would affect his future.
After much work with Carter I got him to start representing himself in a respectful manner. We changed how he interacted with adults so he could talk to coaches properly. We analyzed his film to show him what he was doing wrong on the field and what how he needed to play to be recruited by Division I. We emphasized the importance of good grades and he did begin to focus on those grades. Carter was a Senior so there was no way to fix his grades from before his senior year.
There are many lessons to be learned from my work with Carter, but the focus of today’s article is grades so I’m going to stick with that.
You are recruited on your past grades
We marketed Carter through our Titan Scouting Service (then known as ProDynamix Athlete Marketing). He received tremendous exposure and a lot of interest. His core GPA was a 2.6 cumulative. He did better his senior year, but it was too late to have an effect on his current GPA used for recruiting during his senior year.
What most athletes don’t understand is the following: You are recruited on your past grades. What does that mean? It means that if college coaches are recruiting you as a junior they will only be able to see your Freshman and Sophomore year grades. If they are recruiting you as a Senior they can only see what you did from Junior year and before. So how you performed academically in the past is what they are going to use to recruit you.
Several schools with higher academic requirements were recruiting Carter but chose not to pursue him any further because his grades were just not good enough. Bucknell and Lafayette were both interested, but had to look in another direction.
I cannot emphasize enough how important academics are to getting an athletic scholarship to college
Almost always the first question I am asked when talking to college coaches is, “How are their grades?” I cannot emphasize enough how important academics are to getting an athletic scholarship to college. And because of his 2.6 GPA Carter lost a lot of opportunities, but there still was interest.
The big offer came from Coastal Carolina. Carter was offered $20,000 out of the $26,000 per year scholarship.
After receiving his offer he called me and asked, “Why did I only get $20,000 out of the $26,000? Why didn’t I get a full ride?”
I answered, “What’s your GPA Carter?”
He replied, “2.6”
I said, “There you go. You cost yourself $24,000 over four years because you didn’t want to study hard.”
Through the silence on the other end of the phone I could hear the words sinking in to Carter. His only reply was a resigned, “Okay.”
Storms make trees grow deeper roots
No matter what happens with his NFL or professional career Carter has a Bachelors and Masters degree from a great college. He is ready to take on the future and he has moved on from the peers in the past who tried to hold him back.
There are obstacles that get in your way in life. There are storms that you have to face, but remember “Storms make trees grow deeper roots.”
Contact us at Titan Scouting and we will work with your athlete to help get them in the right direction.
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