Juniors and Parents: 5 things to do RIGHT NOW to play college volleyball

As a junior, THIS is your year to make it count on and off the court. With preseason out of the way, you should be well into establishing a routine of school, homework, practices and games. Be sure to make the most of your efforts by reading our guide below for a list of what you should be doing RIGHT NOW regarding your academics and/or college volleyball career.

Academics – It’s all about those grades! Your grades and class rank may be critical for admission into some colleges and scholarship opportunities. Check with your high school counselor to make sure you are still on track to meet all of the eligibility requirements to attend college and play ball.

College Testing – If you have not considered test prep courses (online, book, or school sanctioned) now is a good time to take those courses, use down time at tournaments to study if your schoolwork allows. Check out these test prep courses for some extra help in preparing to ace your standardized tests: Veritas prepKaplan, Princeton review, EPrep, and Study Point. If you know standardized testing isn’t your forte, we highly recommend some kind of test prep prior to taking either the ACT or SAT.

College Applications– Applications don’t open until around the first of August before your senior year, so start preparing now! Junior year is the time you should be narrowing down your choices of schools based on your interests in major or area of the country. If you have no clue what you want to do, here’s a few things to help you discover your interests and strengths:

  • Visit with your school counselor
  • Take a Myers Briggs personality test or career test
  • Consider a college and career prep program like PrepSCO. This program helps match up your aptitude, personality, leadership and interests to help you maximize success toward an education and career.
  • Consider the schools that offer your potential degree plans with volleyball opportunities. (PARENTS – School counselors are busy. A program like PrepSCO can MINIMIZE the amount of dropped classes and degree plan changes, get your student out of college and on the best career path for them much more quickly, which translates to LESS MONEY WASTED).
  • Go register with the NCAA and NAIA eligibility centers. Additionally go register on the athletic websites for the colleges you are interested in.

College Visits – Visit colleges you are interested in during the fall season – go watch the team, coach and see how they react when they win and lose. Also, many colleges have designated spring athlete visit days/weekends, just for high school juniors. Start looking at college websites NOW and PLAN AHEAD to attend.

College summer camps are a great way to see how you like the coach, facilities, location, players and determine if that school could be a good fit for you.

College Recruiting – You should be recording your games and uploading the footage to YouTube (from your school and club seasons). If you have a recruiting profile, be sure to add these clips there as well.

Recruiting websites like Be Recruited or Captain U can help facilitate communication between coaches and players and save you time in tracking down coach emails. If you or your high school team achieved something newsworthy (like won state, achieved setter of the year for your region, etc.), let the coaches know as well.

Scholarships – Begin to create a list of potential scholarships opportunities that might appeal to you, check out the requirements and start working toward them.  Be sure that you are documenting your hours of involvement in extra-curricular activities related to school, church, and community programs  Doing this will save you time and effort when you are applying for colleges as many colleges require a certain amount of hours for acceptance.

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