Putting together a NCAA Division 1 hockey team can be very difficult, and when it comes to college recruitment, the deciding factor as to whether or not you land one of these sought-after positions will typically come down to your skill and ability when playing hockey. That being said, coaches are presented with a number of highly-skilled young hockey players all competing for a place, therefore there are a number of other factors which can go towards the end decision. The more aware young players and parents are about what to do when it comes to catching the eye of a coach, the better their chances of recruitment.
When it comes to getting noticed by college coaches, you’ll need to be aware that the more proactive you are, the better. College coaches don’t just wait around to spot exceptional hockey players; you’ll need to get in touch with the coaches at the colleges you are interesting in applying to, and seriously sell your skills and talent to them. One great way to do this is to have a professional video taken of yourself playing hockey, and email it to the coach or upload it on YouTube so that you can send them the link. Even better, if you’re planning to attend a college close to home, email coaches to let them know about games which you’ll be playing in the local area and invite them along to watch. Players can contact coaches at any time, so the sooner you get in touch, the better.
Get Good Grades
If you are hoping to get an ice hockey scholarship to win the coveted spot on the team, you’ll not only need to be good at playing hockey – your grades will have to be up to scratch as well. When choosing players to recruit, coaches also have to take into consideration what the player’s overall performance is like, and this includes the academic subjects you will take during your freshman year. The better your test scores and grades are, the more options you will have when it comes to being recruited for a top college team.
Be Consistent and Committed
When it comes to recruiting players, coaches aren’t just looking for skill alone – they want to see a variety of excellent character traits in the players that they choose, including consistency, dedication and commitment. Coaches recognize that improvement is gained through dedicated training routines rather than taking part in lots of games; therefore, if you are not competing as much as you would like to there is usually no need to worry if you can exhibit a strong, dedicated attitude to your training. When you play for a college team, you will need to be absolutely dedicated to constantly improving your skills, techniques and also your attitude. Your attitude towards the sport is everything – skills and techniques can always be improved, but you will need the right mind-set to do this.
Don’t forget that you’ll need to start early, especially if you’re hoping for a scholarship!