So, you want to play college golf? Let’s start by stating the obvious, it will not be easy! How many junior golfers get the chance to play at the college of their choice? The answer is very few. The number is in the hundreds, and some years only a handful. Why? Many junior golfers and their parents forget they have to plan to play!
Let me start by saying that there are over 26,000 public high schools, plus another 8,000 private schools in the US. I have calculated that there are roughly 8-15 kids per high school golf team, so if we took an average of 10, there are roughly 200,000 junior golfers in the US. Now add the international junior golfers aspiring to play college golf, this adds another rough estimate of 200,000 aspiring collegiate players. There are only 2,200 schools that offer men’s (1,300) and women’s (900) golf programs, and each year there is an average of 2 spots per program being replaced. Therefore, there are only 4,500 spots available any given year. This makes your odds of playing college golf small, .01 to precise! Wow!
So, if you still want to play college golf at the school of your choice, I’m sure this makes you think about it more. I love your courage; the odds are stacked against you, and you are still going for it! Let me break this down for you. In any given year there are over 6 million high school students graduating across the globe and on average there are over 9,000 applications per college each year. However, the schools that many parents want their kids to attend are receiving an average of 50,000 applications per year, and America’s Top 20 schools are receiving an average of 84,000 applications per year! If you happen to be thinking about a school in California, the average is over 100,000!! You as a student athlete have a chance to dramatically increase your odds of acceptance. If your game is good enough to get the attention of the coach at the school of choice, your application goes from the stack of 50,000 to the stack of 100. The better your game, the better your chances! The balance of academics and golf practice can be challenging. The fact that you want to go to college, it is a given that you will likely put the effort into your academics, but now knowing the odds of playing in college, you may want to rethink how much time is too much, you may have a diminishing return when focusing too much time on academics. Overload on academics will certainly take away from your golf preparation time, which takes away your chances of having the scores necessary to gain attention of a coach that can help your chances more than academic perfection. That is why we created the ACHIEVE program: to stop the overload of academics, allowing for flexible time for golf practice.
Over the past 15 years our great team of coaches and myself at The Golf Performance Center have helped over 100 student athletes attend over 80 different US schools. How’d we do it? We help them plan for success based on our 5 Elements of Success, our Player Development System, and our Player Development Index (PDI) Assessment. We help players realize their potential by increasing their skills: physically, mentally, mechanically, and by having the right tools and environment which helps boost their golf talents while preparing them to attend a school of their choice. I have worked with thousands of families over my 25-year career in performance development and I can say for a fact that the more you plan, the harder you work your plan, the smarter you work you plan, the easier it gets with minimal stress. With this being said, it doesn’t mean there isn’t some stress, some frustration, and a few hard decisions. But if you are willing to go for it, you can reach your goal of obtaining a college roster spot and hopefully set yourself up for the journey you intend it to be!
If you think of checking the box on a chart that the guidance counselor at your school gave you and said, here is what colleges are looking for, THINK again! Like I mentioned earlier, there will be a sea of kids doing the same thing and you will crash into the shores of college admissions with the other 80,000 hopefuls! If you think making a perfect score on a standardized test will make the difference, well, the odds are you will be one of the other nearly 300,000 students who did the same thing. It could help, but the time spent on this one factor may not be your best time spent. You are a competitor, be a competitor wanting to win, similar to winning a tournament. The odds are against you but if you prepare better than everyone else your chances of winning increase.
Having spent time with some of the best schools in the country asking the student – athletes about their journeys, they say that academics are important, however, it wasn’t the grades or a standardized test score that got them into the school. Ultimately it was their golf game, their desire to be the best at what they love to do! Admissions at the highest academic levels are looking for individuals to help challenge the status quo of learning. They want champions of self-motivation, they want independent thinkers and doers, not followers!
How do you get into the school of your choice? You plan it, you choose your direction, you start early in your preparation, you get the best Player Development Index (PDI), you use the JuniorGolfHub.com, and you come to see me at The Golf Performance Center!
Enjoy Your Journey!