athletic scholarships

BaseballIf our family hadn’t taken action over 15 years ago, who knows where our twin sons would have ended up in college?  It would have been unlikely that they would have received athletic scholarships.

Our recruiting experience changed our family.  And it really changed the lives of our sons.   They received fully paid educations because we, as a family, took the initiative to get our sons recruited.  Sure, we couldn’t guarantee how coaches would respond, but at least our sons’ abilities were seen by coaches.

Why don’t so many talented athletes ever get recruited?  It’s really quite simple.

If you’re a parent of a talented athlete, I’m sure you want the best opportunity for your son or daughter.  Helping them take the initiative is one of the best things you can do for them.  Come alongside them and work on this as a team.  And a word for athletes… Continue reading

QuestionWhen it comes to evaluating their son or daughter, parents usually make one of two mistakes:

  1.  They overrate them, or
  2.  They underrate them

Let’s be honest about it.  There’s usually no way we can be objective in evaluating our kid’s athletic ability. 

If that’s the case, how can we know whether they can get a scholarship?  Or, if they can, at what level?  What’s realistic?

I know I faced each of those questions with my twin sons.  I so much wanted them to make it in college as athletes.  I believed they could get scholarships.  I’m not sure how strongly they believed it.  I led the charge and they followed … and got that fully paid education while competing in the sport they loved.

Now it’s your turn to make that call.  How far can your athlete go?  Is he or she athletic scholarship material?  Continue reading

College football coach Brady HokeIf your son or daughter is going to get an athletic scholarship, you both need to know what college coaches are looking for, what they expect and how they do their recruiting.  In other words, you need to know what they’re thinking.  And especially what they’re thinking about your athlete.

First of all, know that coaches are trying to fill specific spots on their roster.  They’re looking ahead to your athlete’s year of entry, and they’re considering whether they have a spot for within the first couple years your son or daughter would be there.  If your athlete is in a sport that has position players, they’ll be recruited if the coach knows that slot will be open in their freshman or sophomore year.

You need to understand this point.  It doesn’t matter how talented your son or daughter is if there isn’t an opening for them.

*** For more insights, I encourage you to listen to my podcast interview with D1 coach Tom Kunis Episode #4.  We go into depth about what college coaches are looking for. ***

Second, is your athlete going to be a good fit in the program and college?  College coaches look at these things.  They want to know if the chemistry is there and if your son or daughter truly want to compete in their program.  If an athlete doesn’t want to go across the country, but his parents are pushing him, coaches will pick that up.  They want to eliminate as much chance as possible that your son or daughter will transfer.  They do their best on the front end to see if there’s a good fit. You should want that, too. Continue reading

It’s Recruiting Breakthrough Week. I’ve got a few gold nuggets to blog about this week that will give you the recruiting edge as we kick off the summer recruiting season.  I’m calling it your “Recruiting Breakthrough Edge.”

Look for them here in posts this week.

Today’s Recruiting Breakthrough

Edge of the Day:

Do not send coaches your athlete’s video link to coaches as the first step.

Unfortunately, I see this strategy all the time, but there’s a better way.

First, let me address why you shouldn’t do it.

You want your son or daughter to stand out in that first contact with coaches.  If you send a video, then your athlete is just one of hundreds… or thousands that do the very same thing.  You want to do the opposite of what other families are doing.  That’s how your son or daughter stands out right away!

The better way to use video is to first send a quality introductory packet to coaches.  The intro packet is a brief email or letter from your athlete, accompanied by a player profile or resume.  It’s a way for your athlete to introduce him or herself.  It’s a handshake.

Most families don’t do this.  This is the way to stand out right away.

Then… if the coach is interested (based on what he sees in the intro packet), he’ll contact your son or daughter and most likely ask for a video link.  The key here is that the coach is reaching out and making contact and it’s no longer one way communication.  It shows interest, and that’s what you want.  The dialogue has begun.

Send the video link when the coach requests it.

This is the right way to use video and make a proper introduction.  Coaches will appreciate this personal approach.

Look for the next Recruiting Breakthrough Edge so you can get the edge this summer in your recruiting efforts.

FootballAthletic scholarships don’t just happen, although it sure looked that way a few days ago on signing day.  I want to dispel that myth, because believing it will assure that your kid is left out in the cold and you’re left holding an entire college bill.

So let’s talk about what it takes to being selected for an athletic scholarship. There is a road and Softballyour family needs to know the checkpoints along that road.  If you do, and you act correctly, your kid will get signed to an athletic scholarship.

Consider it a long race.  It’s one that you have to be willing to run, because getting an athletic scholarship is a process.  It takes effort on your part as a family.  Most families wait around and lose out.  Don’t be one of those.

And don’t be scattered.  That’s another mistake families make.  The end result is frustration and no real progress.  Confusion reigns.

The families I work with that are successful are ones that follow a step-by-step system.  And it always includes the chronological checkpoints I will lay out for you in this post.

Let’s go! Continue reading

Jon Fugler, scholarship coachIn all the years I’ve been involved in recruiting, first as a parent and then as a recruiting coach, it is crystal clear that getting a scholarship involves three investments and three great returns.

The first investment is time.  You need to be willing to invest the time it takes to pursue an athletic scholarship. For our family, the investment yielded enormous returns.  I’m talking about both the parent and the athlete investing time.

Here are three things you must do with your time in order to capture an athletic scholarship:

  1. Pursue college coaches.  Sounds strange?  Aren’t they the ones doing the recruiting?  Yes, but if you don’t show interest, they’ll move on to the next recruit.  Build the relationships with key college coaches.  These are coaches are showing an interest in you.  Relationships take time.
  2. Keep the resume up to date.  Parents, your kid’s athletic and academic history is growing and changing every season or semester.  Be sure to take the time to go through the resume and make sure it is completely up to date.  I recommend doing this every month.  Coaches will want to see your latest information.  You’d be surprised how often that needs updating.
  3. Improve. Yes, athlete, you’ve got to be improving continuously.  Practice more, compete more, find a mentor to challenge and teach you.  Keep in mind, that other recruits are working hard to improve, and you don’t want to be left behind.

The second investment is money.  There is no free ride to get a free ride. Whether you pursue the scholarship on your own or go Cadillac with a consultant or service, you will have to invest money. Recruiting resources, camps, clinics, trips, showcases, video production, etc.

However, make wise investments.  You can go broke at this.  Don’t get caught up in activity, such as attending camp after camp.  Do it strategically, attending recruiting camps at colleges you’re interested in.  You want to be seen by the right coaches.  Parents, I would budget for 3-4 camps over the entire recruiting effort– period.

The third investment is heart.  This is not a process for the weak of heart. It’s a long haul and it can wear you out. But the rewards are well worth it. Don’t lose heart. Commit your heart to the process.

That’s why it is important not to go at it alone.  This is a team effort– parent and athlete.  you’re going to need each other.  Remember, this is a marathon and not a sprint.  Just like a season, you’ll have ups and downs and good and bad stretches.  Keep the end in mind– winning an athletic scholarship.  You’ve got to have a vision.

Continue reading

Recruiting phone callIt could come as a phone call, email, letter or even a text. Your kid has been contacted by a college coach.  This coach is recruiting your son or daughter for an athletic scholarship. You might be feeling an adrenaline rush when this happens.

You ask yourself, “What should we do?”

Here are some words of advice:

1. Stay calm. This is just a first contact. You haven’t been offered a scholarship yet.  It’s important to realize that the coach is beginning the recruiting process with your son or daughter and there is a long road ahead.  It may or may not work out.  That’s what you are trying to find out and the coach is trying to find out.

Welcome the contact.  If the coach asks for more information, provide it promptly.  Send or email documents and video link if that’s what is asked for. Continue reading

NCAANational signing day is Wednesday.  It’s a day that gets an incredible amount of hype.  It elevates many but discourages more.

If your kid isn’t an elite athlete, national signing day can leave you cold, worried, anxious.  Of course, tomorrow is just football’s big day, but this kind of hype can send chills down the spines of parents whose athletes compete in other sports.


Because the air of uncertainty creeps into your mind and emotions.  What if my kid doesn’t land a scholarship?  What if all our effort isn’t rewarded?  What if we can’t afford college unless my son or daughter gets a scholarship?  What if…? Continue reading

Going brokeYou can go broke trying to get your kid a scholarship, and that’s the opposite of what you’re after for your family. You want net gain, not net loss.

The amount of money parents spend on things that they think will guarantee or increase their kids’ scholarship chances is often based on emotion and not logic. What I’ve found is much of this money is spent out of fear or from peer pressure.

In its most recent survey of college pricing, the College Board reports that a “moderate” college budget for an in-state public college for the 2015–2016 academic year averaged $24,061. A moderate budget at a private college averaged $47,831.

Yes, when it comes to the end of the recruiting journey, you want $10,000 … $20,000 … $30,000 or more each year staying in your pocket! Parents, I know the financial strain of paying for college. But spending a ton of money on things you hope will get your kid a scholarship is no guarantee at all.

Here are three things you can do to spend less in your scholarship efforts and still be successful.

1. Cut back on lessons. I sent my kids to hitting and pitching lessons, and paid quite a bit. But I was selective. It wasn’t an “until further notice” contract with the instructor. Be strategic. I would bet that you could cut your costs in half and still not sacrifice your kid’s future and improvement. You could save hundreds, even thousands, of dollars a year. Continue reading

Athletic Scholarship PodcastI’m just a couple days away from releasing the next episode of the Athletic Scholarship Podcast.  This time, you’ll get the benefit of hearing from a college coach who has been recruiting at some of the nation’s leading programs for two decades.

Here are three things he pushed during the interview.  I’ll only give you a cursory view here,  because I want you to hear the details in his own words.   Be sure to check back on my podcast page in a couple days for the release of this new episode.

  1.  Do your research.  This coach made a  big point about visiting the schools highest on your list and spending time on campus, with the coach, and watching the team work out.  This would be an unofficial visit, and you can make as many of those as you want.
  2. Academics is so important.  If you don’t have the grades, the coach can’t get you in. So work hard now so you can have a choice of schools when it’s time to make your decision.
  3. The scholarship offer is not the most important factor in your decision.  So what is most important?  This coach will talk in more detail about this in the interview.

Continue reading

Athletic scholarship questionsYou can get duped by believing things that just aren’t true.  And in the recruiting world, this can kill your athletic scholarship.

I just finished recording the next episode of the Athletic Scholarship Podcast, and I spoke passionately about three of the most damaging myths.  Then I lay out the truth.  The podcast will release in a couple days, but here’s a sneak preview:

Myth #1:  If my kid is good enough, college coaches will find him or her.

Truth: A very small percentage of high school student-athletes receive scholarships because the coach “happened to find him or her.” Only the top-line elite athletes—the top 100 or so nationally—receive enough national media recognition that they are automatically recruited without having to make an effort. Continue reading

VolleyballRecruiting is a hard world, and if you don’t have your act together, it can beat you up.  Here are the first three of a dozen recruiting rules that I’ve laid out for families.  I hope these three help.  You can get the full dozen (and three bonus rules!) by downloading the Guide I’ve put together.

Download “12 Rules of Recruiting and Athletic Scholarships”

Recruiting Rule #1:  Know When to Start. 

The number one question I get from parents is, “When should we start the recruiting process?”

I remember getting an email from one parent whose son was a senior, asking if it was too late. A moment later, I received an email from a freshman parent asking if it was too early! So, as you can see, there is some confusion out there.

You should start early. In fact, as early as the freshman year, if that’s possible. But, even if you are in the senior year, it’s still probably not too late. You just have to work faster. Continue reading

Tomorrow night is my premier webinar and you’re invited:

5 Step to an Athletic Scholarship:  How to Get Recruited in 30 Days.

I’ll be walking you through the five steps that will give you the focus and direction your family needs in this exciting and challenging journey.  I don’t know where you’re at in the process, but I do know that you’ll come away from this webinar with solid steps of action.  When we did the recruiting thing with our sons, it was a huge blessing to have someone guide us and give us specific steps of action.  You’ll get that tomorrow night.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

9 PM Eastern/ 8 PM Central/ 7 PM Mountain/ 6 PM Pacific

My Video Invite to You

If you follow just the first two steps, your student-athlete will start hearing from coaches in 30 days or less.

How to Watch

This high-energy live video event will be presented on the LIVE WEBINAR PAGE , as well as on YouTube and Google Hangouts. Choose your way.

Watch on your computer or any mobile device. If you’re using your mobile device, you may want to watch on YouTube.


Please RSVP by emailing me or on the Event Page and I’ll see you Thursday night, November 5. Invite other parents and athletes to attend.

Everyone attending will receive a Recruiting Checklist as a follow-up to what I teach you on the webinar.

To watch on Google Hangouts, follow this link:

BallsI’ve been looking around and no one has done it, so I decided I would.  I’m launching the Athletic Scholarship Podcast in a couple days. In the first episode, I’m starting with a couple stories.  My story and your story.  I want you to hear my experiences over the years and how they might translate into yours.

I want to help you with your story from this day forward.  That’s what the Athletic Scholarship Podcast is all about.

In the first episode, I dig into five things that will help you avoid pain, disappointment and financial disaster.  I thought I’d preview the first one here with you in writing.

#1: WHO.

Be careful who you listen to.  There’s so much bad advice out there and it can cost you.  Not only financially, but your son or daughter’s future.  Their college future is too important to mess with, and you need to be careful.

You can get a lot of information online, but how good is it?  Just because the website looks good doesn’t mean you should believe the content.  I say that even for the things you read on my site.  Verify, verify, verify.  Check the information against what you see, read, and hear elsewhere.  If there’s consistency, then it’s likely that the advice is valid. Continue reading

FlyingI’m in the air right now flying to a conference in Florida. I took an aisle seat, so I have to strain to see the view below. To make it even more difficult, I’m over the wing. In other words, this isn’t a seat with view.

I got to thinking about the importance of taking a view of recruiting from 30,000 feet. Are you feeling pressured, tired, distracted, even confused in your athletic scholarship hunt? It can happen when you’re in the battle. I remember those days.

You can’t see the end. It’s a struggle, things aren’t going perfectly and you never seem to be as far along as you’d like. If that’s you, then take a flight. Not a hike. A flight.

In this post, I’ll show you what I mean and how you can do three things that will absolutely get you back on the right path to that scholarship pursuit.  Here’s how…

Continue reading

[NOTE:  Five Steps to an Athletic Scholarship, a Free Mini-Course from Recruit-Me, will be available in just a few days.  This is the only step-by-step course available today and will expand on some of the things in this blog post, as well as much more.  Check back in a few days and you’ll see how to get started with the first lesson.]

Signing Most people don’t understand the process that gets an athlete recruited.  The official signing is what most of us see or hear about, but we have no idea what went into getting the student-athlete in that position.

Is it a big mystery?  To most families, it is.  So let me lay out five factors that cause an athlete to get recruited:

1.  Talent.  There’s no substitute for this.  But don’t be fooled.  Your son or daughter doesn’t need to be the best in the league or on the team.  They key is that he or she has the talent to compete at the next level.  If that’s the case, there’s a good chance a scholarship is in their future.  It’s important to cast your net wide, because you don’t know which programs are looking for recruits at your son or daughter’s talent level.  Don’t get hung up on particular schools at the outset.  It will take time to see which ones are the best fit. Continue reading

VolleyballYesterday, I was talking with a woman who recently completed her volleyball career at one of the top D2 schools in the nation.  She gave me some good insights that I wanted to pass along to you.  Her husband, also a star athlete, added to her advice.  The conversation lasted only a few minutes, but here’s what I learned:

1.  If you can’t compete at the D1 level, don’t.  She told me she was too short to play D1, so she didn’t try to get onto a team at that level.  Instead, she went with a program that was a good fit, and was a scholarship athlete on a championship team.  She had a great experience.  I’m sure she actually could have played D1 somewhere, but probably not in a quality program where she ended up.  Continue reading

Mountain climbingA few weeks ago, I asked people on my email list, “What is your biggest recruiting challenge?”

I received a lot of great feedback that gave me insight into what you’re feeling and experiencing these days. I studied the responses and put them together into one document.  And I’m ready to take on the biggest challenges you expressed and provide solutions.

By the way, if you didn’t put in your response, go ahead and email me or weigh in below in the comments section.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to getting things going and addressing your challenges real soon.  Here’s how I’ll do it:

I’m in the process of recording a three-part mini-course on recruiting and athletic scholarships.  This will be free, by the way.  No tuition required.

It’s a series of three lessons on video.  I’ve completed the recording and I’m laboring to finish the editing so I can release it in a couple weeks.  Man, it’s hard work and has taken more time than I thought it would.  I do know, however, that if I can do this myself, you can shoot and produce your son or daughter’s video yourselves.  It’s achievable! Continue reading

It’s one thing to get the interest of college coaches, but how do you keep the interest up and how do you deepen the relationship?  As a parent, you can’t do this for your kids,  but you can certainly help them.

When we were going through this process with our sons, we took an active role in the relationships between coaches and our kids.  In fact, the coaches enjoyed talking with us, too, because they wanted to see what kind of family our boys came from.  While we were careful not to dominate the conversations, we did get involved.

The bottom line is that the coach wants to develop the relationship with the student-athlete, so it’s vital that your son our daughter is prepared for the conversations.

In this post, I want to take you to a clip from a video I recorded recently for student-athletes, and it addresses what to do when coaches contact the student-athlete.  I call it “closing the loop” in the recruiting process.

Parents, it’s important that you know this information, because you’ll be coaching your son or daughter in this process.  You can help him or her interact with coaches and move them further up on the coaches’ list.  So, let’s go for it…


Please let me know what you think of the video.  I’m recording a new video series right now, which will be part of  free mini-course on recruiting that I’ll make available in a few weeks.  Your comments and questions will help me as I finalize the content.

SummerHere we go into summer, and it’s this time of year that every college sport is out of season.  What that means is that it’s a critical recruiting window.  In fact, the heaviest season.  Every single college program in every single sport is on the recruiting trail.

This is the season of opportunity.  But opportunity doesn’t usually knock unless you knock first.  Will your family commit to taking the next three months to give your best effort to getting your son or daughter recruited?

Summer time is not idle time.  While most other families are taking it easy and neglecting this critical recruiting season, you can set yourselves apart and have your son or daughter get noticed by college coaches.

Here’s how: Continue reading

A pounding hail storm that turned in to a steady rain halted any chance of me recording a video post today, so we’ll have to cover the material the old-fashioned way.  Well, I did shoot an 18-second video with my phone, but it has nothing to do with recruiting.  Check out the hail:


This week, I have a tough question for you to answer.

You are probably in one of three situations.

1.  You’ve been pursuing an athletic scholarship for your son our daughter for some time.  Maybe a year or more.  And you’re not sure how it will all turn out.

2.  You’ve been working on this for a very short time.  You’ve done some things, but coaches aren’t knocking the door down.

3.  You’re just getting started in the scholarship pursuit. Continue reading

How would you like to get into the mind of a college coach to understand what he or she is looking for in a recruit?  W0uldn’t that help you with your son’s or daughter’s pursuit of an athletic scholarship?

In this week’s blog post, I get face-to-face with you to share five of the most important things a coach is looking for.  I hope this helps to center yourselves as you go through the recruiting process.

NOTE:  Summer is just about here, and you need to be thinking about summer plans as they relate to recruiting.  You might want to take a few informal school visits.  Also, be looking for tournaments, showcases and camps you might want your son or daughter to compete at.

After Tuesday night’s teleseminar, honestly, I was exhausted.  But it was such a good event, and I’ve gotten excellent feedback on it.  The free audio download is available through tomorrow night, March 31, so I encourage you to download and listen at your convenience.

Get “Five Steps to an Athletic Scholarship” Download

How can you do the recruiting process right if you don’t know the foundational truth?  In the video at the top of this post, I reveal that truth and give you a real-life example in one family’s successful recruiting experience.

In the video, I mention that I offered a free Recruiting Checklist to everyone on the call the other night.  This Checklist will help you go deeper into the recruiting experience and is a follow-up to the five steps you’ll hear on the teleseminar.  Listen to the download and you’ll find out how to receive the Checklist.

The free checklist and offers explained on the teleseminar expire tomorrow night (Tuesday) at midnight.  I hope you’ll capture the urgency to get your recruiting program into high gear this spring.

College campusWith twin sons on their way to college over a decade ago, my wife and I were facing the prospect of huge college debt.  Our daughter was already in college and we were stretched to the max.

If it weren’t for the scholarships our boys received, I think we’d still be paying off college debt.

You may be in a similar situation, so you know how important it is for you to pursue an athletic scholarship for your son or daughter.  In fact, your student-athlete doesn’t realize how important this is.  Continue reading

SurveyI just received this comment and question from a student-athlete.  His question is not uncommon, and his thoughts about his situation are not uncommon either.  I thought that his question was so important that I’d answer it here for you, too.

Q:  I’m going to be a Sophomore next year and I might go for Varsity football. I play quarterback and I’m almost 6’0.  I have good grades.  What do I have to do to get a scholarship to a D1 school? Where I live is a small town and our Division is D4, so it harder to get scouts to look at you and to get scholarships. I would do anything to get to a d1 school.  I always work hard and try to be the best that I could. What should i do?? Continue reading

FootballThe NCAA guidelines state that full-ride scholarships will cover fees and tuition, board, room, as well as all books related to a particular course. But these scholarships are only offered to students who participate in “head-count sports” such as basketball, Division 1-A football, women’s tennis, women’s gymnastics, or women’s volleyball. All other sports fall under the category of “equivalency sports”, which allows a coach to determine the allotted scholarship amount for many players. Some of these scholarships may be partial while others are full-ride.

Equivalency Sports for Men and Women

Equivalency sport scholarships can be used as a starting point to obtain a full-ride scholarship in future years, or at least an increase in funding as you progress through the program. Sports that fall under this category for men include baseball, Division 1-AA football, gymnastics, wrestling, tennis, rifle, and volleyball. The women’s list of sports includes equestrian, rowing, field hockey, softball, squash, and rugby. Equivalency sports for both men and women include cross-country/field and track events, fencing, ice hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, skiing, diving and swimming, as well as water polo. Athletic scholarships through these sports will offer monetary and support benefits that can be crucial for the development of student-athletes.

Financial Realities

Full-ride athletic scholarships are expected to cover all costs involved in the education of a student. But there remains a sizable difference between the costs of attending college and the scholarship. Students are not fully covered for things such as incidentals and travel home on vacations, but the scholarship will be a huge factor in saving a lot of money over the duration of your college career.

CheckmarkI was reading through the answers to a recent survey I took with parents and athletes.  One of the parents stated the biggest challenge in reaching the scholarship goal is “Seemingly lack of effort on my daughters part to promote herself.”

This is a statement of a bigger problem many parents face.  And that is, how to motivate their son or daughter to do what it takes to get a scholarship.  As a parent, you know the financial implications, but usually the student-athlete doesn’t have that mature of a perspective.  Continue reading

Jon Fugler, scholarship coachEnrollment for the first-ever Recruit-Me Intensive is now closed.  If you didn’t enroll, you can still take advantage of the resources in your free membership, as well as regular posts on the Recruit-Me blog.  I look forward to sharing things that can help you in your recruiting efforts.

I surveyed parents aSurveynd student-athletes earlier this month, and the responses were insightful.  From goals to needs, many people expressed their honest thoughts.  I’m thankful for the detailed responses.  Let me give you a peek at some trends I saw in the responses, then I’ll address them.

Let me start at the beginning.

The first thing that popped out to me was the goal student-athletes expressed.  By far, the most frequent answer was “A full ride scholarship.”  That’s great, because you have a clear goal, the highest scholarship goal when it comes to financial help.  Several others stated they wanted a partial or 50% scholarship. Continue reading

(Before you get into this post, can I ask for your help?  I’d like to get your response to a few questions in our Athletic Scholarship and Recruiting SurveyI’d like to know your what you’re thinking and experiencing.  Thanks!)

You might not be too faStadiumr from achieving your scholarship dream.  Whether you’ve been contacted by many coaches or none, let’s put things in perspective.

If you’re talented and you can compete at the next level, there are schools that want you.  And they’ll offer you a scholarship.  You need to believe that.  It’s true.  When we went through this experience with our twin sons, the day we found that perfect match was incredible.  There is a perfect match for you, too.

That lead me to my next point.  You need to compete.  I don’t mean in your sport, but for a scholarship. You can’t sit back and wait.  You need to make yourself known.  There are thousands and thousands of athletes competing for every scholarship position, so you need to make every effort to be one who is chosen.   Hope isn’t going to cut it.  Hope doesn’t win games and it doesn’t win scholarships.  You need to get to work. Continue reading

FootballFor many high school athletes, they make their college choice for the wrong reasons.  Here are my top 5 wrong reasons for choosing a particular program:

1.  My father (or mother) went there.

2.  They’re my favorite team.

3.  I like the campus. Continue reading

Cell phoneIn my last post, I went through a number of questions athletes should ask college coaches when the coaches call.  Or when you call a coach.  Recruiting is a two-way street.  While the coach is recruiting athletes, you are recruiting schools.  You should take the initiative to find out as much as you can about the program, coach and school.  That way you can make an informed decision.  Let’s continue from last week’s discussion.

College Life

What is a typical day for a student-athlete?
You will learn a typical schedule that will include courses, practices, meal times, study times, etc. This will give you insight as to how to manage your time and assist you with needed adjustments.

What does the institution’s services entail?
You will be informed of any study hall hours that may be required of you during your tenure. Also, this is a good time to ask about the availability of tutors. Continue reading

NCAA ConferencesFor a high school student-athlete, there aren’t many things more frightening than talking with a college coach on the phone.  It can be daunting.  And it should be.  You’ve been dreaming of getting an athletic scholarship and now the coaches are calling.  You’re on the spot.

You need to prepare for these occasions.  Once you take a few calls, you’ll get more comfortable.  That is, until you get a call from a coach you really want to play for.  This school is on your A list.  You’ve been hoping he or she will call.  And now it happens.  It can really make you nervous.

When taking a coach’s call, try to relax.  He or she will understand you’re nervous.  That’s ok.

Secondly, have a list of questions ready.  If the coach is calling your cell phone, you’ll have to think quickly.  The list will have to be in your head.  Continue reading

Athletic scholarshipLike most people, I doubt you have time to listen to a one-hour podcast on recruiting.  Many did last week, but if you weren’t one of them, then here are the cliff notes for you to take in — and hopefully apply.

Here are the top seven questions that come up when I’m talking with people about recruiting and athletic scholarships, followed by bullet point answers:

1. How can I get noticed and recruited?

• Myth: Coach will find you.

• Take the initiative. Don’t wait for coaches to contact you.

• The fallacy that top line athletes are the only ones who get contacted.

• Most scholarships are awarded to athletes that make the first contact.

$15 off coupon• Coaches do not have the budget to travel the country or even much of the region.

• First impression usually comes from an athlete that contacts a coach. Continue reading

What’s the best way to get on a college coach’s radar when seeking an athletic scholarship?

First of all, you need to come to terms that in order to get recruited, the burden is on you to contact coaches and do it the right way.  There are wrong ways, and taking one of these wrong appCollege coachesroaches can hurt you.  Make sure you get things started on the right foot.  There are some common misguided approaches we’ve seen people try before learning the right way. 

Let me go over the wrong ways, because none of these are effective.  They may appear to be effective at first glance, but they are usually harmful to your chances at getting a college coach’s interest.  For instance, sending out hundreds of identical “Dear coach…” emails.  Coaches can smell spam a mile away.  If they get a non personalized email, they are just going to hit “delete”.  There is a role for email contact, but not this way. Continue reading

college athletesEvery parent alive would love for their kids to get a complete scholarships and dodge the escalating tuition bullet.  For athletes, these are called full rides.  We read about them in the paper on signing days, and the write-ups make it seem like every scholarship athlete is rewarded with a full ride. 

But no.  That’s not true.  Continue reading

A student-athlete’s digital footprint can have a crucial say if he or she is looking for an athletic scholarship.   If you’ve had a fight on the internet and it escalated into something bigger, there is a chance that you may have to wave your scholarship goodbye.  Facebook

Internet use, especially social media, can negatively impact your hopes of making it into a good school or college. Things that you have posted, or things posted about you, may be long forgotten by the people involved, but their online shelf life is quite long.  Should recruiters or people with power to hire, find such things online, you are bound to enter their bad books.

BaseballMost students are unaware that athletic programs offered by some colleges require their students to friend, or add to their circles, members of the staff or the college coaches, on social networking sites. It is one of their requirements for students who wish to represent the college at any sport.  Not only are students expected to maintain an active life on Facebook, but social media such as Twitter, Instagram, and others are also factors in receiving athletic scholarships.  New recruits are viewed under the microscope, and any bad information found by recruiters against you can effectively crash your hopes of making it into your preferred college.

Why do colleges check students’ social media accounts?  Colleges are always concerned about the students they choose.  Scholarship basketball-girlsstudent-athletes are expected to maintain a high level of discipline in all aspects of life.  When they offer you a scholarship, it is the equivalent of investing in you.  They can easily offer the same scholarship to someone else.  If you are ahead of the rest, they want to ensure that you will be an asset to them, and not a social liability.  They also want to make sure that you are worth the scholarship, and that you will not be subject to illegal or wrongful behavior.

Your past posts on Facebook or Twitter may not be the best definition of your personality, but recruiters will judge you for your actions.  The frequency at which you use social media will also be considered by recruiters as they want to see how much time you spend networking.  This gives them a brief idea as to whether you are also working hard on your academics and training, or if you are just an online buff.  When using social networking sites, make sure you think twice before posting anything. Harmless as it might seem, it has the potential to disrupt your future.

national-letter-of-intentNational Signing Day is coming to a close, and thousands of high school athletes have achieved their dream.  They’ve been signed to an athletic scholarship.  If this includes you, then congratulations.  There will be many more signings between now and when the period ends, but this is the day that kicked it all off.

Here’s how one of our Recruit-Me families shared their joy with us just days ago, anticipating today:

“Hi Jon, wanted to update you that our daughter  received three very good  scholarship offers and has accepted to St Francis University, 4 time defending NEC Champs and is very excited for next year.  We can’t sign letter of intent until April 17th.”

Well, today she signed.  I can imagine the excitement in that home. 

The Dad went on to write,  “Your guidance with this program was extremely valuable, from sending out her profile to the proper schools and all the steps in between.  The do’s and dont’s, a great help.   We’ll need it again for our son, a current grade nine and into lacrosse big time.  Thanks again.”

Other signing news:

Baseball basketball volleyball footballFrom LSU:  Brian Bridgewater, the MVP in the Top 28 state playoffs for Scotlandville High School, signed National Letter of Intent papers with the LSU men’s basketball team on Wednesday.

From Maui:  Six student-athletes sat at the front table in the high school counseling room at Kamehameha Schools Maui about an hour ago for spring National Letter of Intent signing day.

Volleyball players led the way — two-time MIL Player of the Year Bobbi-Lin Kalama signed with NCAA Division I Sienna College, Sienna Rae Davis signed with Hawaii-Hilo and Anuhea Kaiaokamalie signed with Chico State, where she will also be part of the honors program.

Football players at the table included Dylan Nakoa. who signed with Notre Dame College in February, Acer Pahukoa signed documents with D-III Carleton College of Minnesota, and Bryson Arakaki sat at the table and is deciding between Illinois College and Dixie State.

From Sarasota, Florida:   At Venice, five Lady Indians, including three from the school’s state championship volleyball team, put pen to paper on the National Signing Day.

Venice’s Caitlin Elsadek received an athletic scholarship despite the fact that Florida high schools don’t offer the sport in which she participates. Elsadek will attend SUNY College at Brockport in Rochester, N.Y., on a gymnastics scholarship.

“It’s always been my dream to compete on the college level,” said Elsadek, who competed for Club Horizon Gymnastics in Port Charlotte. “I’m super-excited.”

Wherever you are in the scholarship hunt, let me encourage you to continue to pursue your dream. 


Did you know that college coaches may be able to view your Facebook posts and Twitter tweets?  That’s how they can get information on you as a person, beyond what you show them as an athlete.

Kind of scary, isn’t it?  Your social media activity can make or break your chances to get an athletic scholarship. 

That’s why we’re dedicating an entire Recruiting Summit to talk with an expert in “social media and recruiting,” Sam Carnahan, founder of the acclaimed
Varsity Monitor.

You don’t have to travel to attend this live Recruiting Summit.  Attend by phone.   As always, our recruiting summit is FREE.  Simply dial in and join us for the discussion of this critical topic.  Sam has saved many athletes’ scholarships, teaching them how to protect their reputation.

Here’s how to attend this one-hour Summit by phone:

Thursday, April 25
8 pm Eastern/ 7 pm Central/ 6 pm Mountain/ 5 pm Pacific

Dial in number: (605) 475-4700
Pin #: 450246#

This Summit is limited to the first 100 people, but it is filling up fast. 

If you have not submitted your RSVP, I encourage you to do it now.  Simply email us at   We will need to close registration at 100 people.

I recommend you print this blog post as a reminder, or enter the information into your phone calendar.

Are you ready?

In just a couple months, every college coach in America will be in recruiting mode.  Yep, summer is the season when they all get out.  But, are they going to find you, if you’re a student-athlete looking to be recruited?  Unfortunately, most athletes merely hope they’ll get recruited.  And, even though this big recruiting will result in athletes getting their big break, it will pass you by if you’re not prepared.

So how do you get prepared?  That’s the topic of my latest video clip on Recruit-Me Athletic TV.


Baseball basketball volleyball footballAs you start the new year, are you looking for new ways to get recruited?  First, you need to come to terms with the fact that college coaches will not make the first contact.  You MUST take the initiative and contact THEM.  That leads me to the second point, the topic of this post:

Contact coaches the right way.  It means there are wrong ways that just don’t work. And taking one of those wrong approaches will probably kill a coach’s interest before you get started with them.  As we’ve worked with parents and athletes, we know there are some approaches that are just misguided. We’ve seen people trying to do these things and none of them are effective.  They are usually harmful to your chances, too. 

Let me run down a few of these for you.  The first one is sending out scores of identical “Dear Coach…” emails.  Coaches can smell out a spam campaign a mile away. If they get a non-personalized email, then they’re just going to generally hit delete.   Now let me make it clear– there is a role for email contact, but not this way.  

Highlight DVDs Another wrong way is to make the first contact by mass mailing DVD’s to coaches.  Most coaches don’t want to take the time to watch an athlete’s video until after they’ve done some screening of the athlete’s facts and stats.  It’s easy to get misled into using this DVD mass mailing approach, because there are a lot of local and national athlete video production services.  They’ll create a great looking video of you (or your son or daughter).  They’ll add that cool music, the title, the captions; these are good to have but don’t use them for introducing yourself or your son or daughter to a coach.  That comes later. 

Another wrong approach is just filling out a questionnaire on the school’s website.  These days, just about every program has that fill-it-out questionnaire.  You’re going to blend in with the crowd if you try this as the introductory approach.  You don’t want to blend in.  You want to stand out.  You’ll eventually be filling out a school’s questionnaire, but not as the first contact.  It’s really a bad approach. 

Completing online questionnaires

If your son or daughter wants to get on a coach’s radar, wants to be recruited by certain schools, how should your family do it?  The best method is something I personally learned early on with my twin boys and what I’ve been teaching families for years.  It’s this:  Create a well crafted introductory packet to send to the college coaches.  This information needs to introduce the athlete to the coach in a very personal way, one that gets their interest and makes them want to know more about the athlete. 

It should give the personal and athletic details that a coach wants to see at first glance so they can make a quick screening decision.  You should be selective on what you write, and should provide just the right information to get the coaches’ interest. It’s really important that you make a goD1 Conferencesod first impression.

For instance, there’s a kid from New York that we helped with his introductory package.  His dad was so excited about the results that he emailed us within a week.  He told us that within five days, two coaches from Division 1 schools had already contacted his high school coach to check up on him.  This family did a good introductory package, it was powerful.

So keep in mind the first two things you need to know in order to break the scholarship code: first, you can’t just sit back waiting to be discovered and, second, you have to contact the coaches the right way so they’ll begin a relationship with you.  

 This is just a small piece of the scholarship and recruiting puzzle.  Your Recruit-Me Premium Membership will provide you with all the tools and coaching you need to break the scholarship code and get an athletic scholarship.  If you’re ready to get started, then I encourage you to enroll in our Premium Membership so we can work with you all the way through the scholarship process.

There’s something about the calendar that triggers certain activities.  One of those calendar moments is the new year.  We’re on the doorstep of 2013, and if you’re like I am, you see that as fresh energy to re-focus and get going on priority activities.  It’s even a time to set priorities and act on them.

It was almost 15 years ago that we got started with our twin boys in the recruiting process.  I remember to this day the week between Christmas and New Year’s when we met with a man that set us in the right direction.  Jeff helped a number of athletes get athletic scholarships, and we met 0ver lunch at a restaurant in Southern California.  I would say that it signified the first major push in our athletic scholarship journey.  Jeff laid out the facts and a possible road map.  We listened intently, and then when the New Year started a few days later, we began pushing hard.  It resulted in fully paid educations for our sons.

So here you are, in the same position our family was in on that December day.  Are you willing to start the year and focus on your athletic scholarship journey?  Are you willing to do what it takes to get college coaches’ attention, build relationships with coaches, research the colleges that would be the best fit, and spend time moving the ball down the field?  Are you willing to do what most athletes never do when it comes to athletic scholarships?  And that is… get started!

Most athletes have a scholarship dream that never converts to reality.  A dream isn’t going to get you a scholarship.  Hard work will.  In 99% of the cases, college coaches do not “just find” their scholarship athletes.  It’s not that easy.  The truth is that student-athletes find the coaches!  That may sound unusual, but it is reality. 

In 2013, we want to help you realize your athletic scholarship dream, taking that dream and making it a reality.  If you’re willing to dedicate the time and effort, and you’re a talented athlete in your sport, you’ll be miles ahead of the pack when it comes to getting an athletic scholarship.

We had a lively time tonight on the final Athletic Scholarship Coaching Session of the year.  We flew through some of the most important things you need to know to get your recruiting journey going strong. One of the highlights of the session was learning three guaranteed ways to get college coaches to recruit you.

The session is now available on demand at your convenience.  But don’t wait too long.  You’ll want to act on what we discussed before your desire and interest wanes.  By attending the session, you will receive the brand new Getting Started Guide for Athletic Scholarships— Free.  All the details are given in the session.

Enjoy the rich content in the free Coaching Session by dialing in or downloading.

Dial in: (605) 475-4799
Access Code:  450246#

Enter # a second time when you are prompted.

Or, to download the session to your laptop or desktop, visit:

We’re excited to announce to our next Free athletic scholarship Coaching Session.  This live, 60-minute session is your last opportunity for 2012:

Wednesday, December 5
8:00 Eastern/5:00 Pacific

Attend Jon Fugler, scholarship coachthis free Coaching Session by phone (see dial-in info below).

Scholarship expert Jon Fugler will address three of the most important things our members tell us they need to understand:

1.  Three guaranteed ways to get college coaches to recruit you.
2.  Exploding the myths and exploring the truths about athletic scholarships.
3.  Three proven ways to rise above other athletes that are being recruited.

At the end of this coaching session:

1.  You will come away with a plan of action to get recruited.
2.  You will better understand crazy the recruiting world.
3.  You will receive, free, “The Getting Started Guide to Athletic Scholarships.”

Also, when you complete this session, you will receive a Bonus Item that will help you successfully walk the complete road to an athletic scholarship.

To attend, simply dial in:


Don’t miss this great opportunity to learn the most important things that will get you an athletic scholarship.


Most people think of National Signing Day for athletic scholarships coming in February.  However, if you are not being recruited as a football player nor compete in field hockey, soccer, track and field, cross country, men’s water polo, National Signing Day is this Wednesday. It is considered the Early Signing Period, as there will be another opportunity in the spring.  This video from the NCAA might help clarify things for you:


There’s a lot of nervousness on the part of parents and athletes when the November period comes. However, if you don’t get signed in this period, don’t fret. A lot will happen between now and next Fall. There will be scholarship opportunities.

On National Signing Day (or Period), the athlete signs a National Letter of Intent. The NCAA explains the NLI this way:

“The NLI is a binding agreement between a prospective student-athlete and an NLI member institution

“A prospective student-athlete agrees to attend the institution full-time for one academic year (two semesters or three quarters).

“The institution agrees to provide athletics financial aid for one academic year (two semesters or three quarters).

“Basic penalty for not fulfilling the NLI agreement: A student-athlete has to serve one year in residence (full-time, two semesters or three quarters) at the next NLI member institution and lose one season of competition in all sports.

Corynne LotzCorynne Notz was on top of the world.

She was a freshman at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, the college of her choice. She had an athletic scholarship to play basketball and had started pre-season practice for the school’s NCAA Division II junior varsity.

In September, her coach called her in for a talk.

“I didn’t think it was going to be a big deal,” she recalled.

But it was.

Corynne was told that she could not play ball.

Read more

Parents and athletes come to us regularly looking for scholarship advice. I was in their shoes over a decade ago, so I understand how they feel and how you may feel.

Here are three things you can do to make sure you’ve got the best shot at an athletic scholarship.

1. Seek schools that fit your athletic ability. The objective is to find a good match once the process is done. So, start by compiling a list of programs where you feel you can compete.

2. Approach the coaches first. Don’t wait for them to find you. They may never discover you if you wait. Believe me, coaches are grateful when you market yourself to them.

3. Do something now. Don’t spend the next week researching and reading. Get started in the recruiting process. Move forward. You can learn along the way, but so many athletes and parents keep doing research without taking action. You must do both.

Drop me an email if you have further questions.

Let’s talk about something.

There’s no doubt that TV coverage is big for college football programs. It’s a major factor in recruiting and athletic scholarships. If a team does well, everyone watches. If they bomb, people tune out.

Tens of thousands of high school football players are watching college football this afternoon, just as I am. And they’re hoping that their favorite teams will recruit them and offer an athletic scholarship.

Plus, they’ll see teams compete that they may not have heard of before. But the TV time gets their interest and they add the school to their list of hopefuls.

Let me encourage student-athletes to go beyond what they see on TV. Look into a program more deeply. Check out the program, the coaches, the academics. You can find out a lot online. In fact, if you do a search, you may even find comments from current or past athletes.

Sure, root for your favorite teams, but don’t lock yourself into those schools. Think bigger and wider. We encourage student-athletes to cast their nets wide, and keep their options open.

What are you looking for in a school? What are the factors as you narrow down your options? Post your comments here as we have that conversation.