Recruiting FAQs

FAQs for Athletes and Parents

What will an Athletic Scholarship Pay for?

While your goal here is to pay for college, unfortunately, athletic scholarships typically are not as generous as regular financial aid or merit awards that your student athlete might be able to pick up from other schools. Only four NCAA Division I sports guarantee full-ride scholarships: football, men’s and women’s basketball, and women’s volleyball. In these four sports, a student either gets a full scholarship or none at all. In all the other sports, partial scholarships are commonplace. So, while you are pursuing athletic money, you should also be looking for schools that can offer academic awards or need-based financial aid.

Are Grades Important for Scholarship Athletes?

College coaches look to recruit well-rounded athletes who excel both on and off the field. If you want to play for an NCAA Division I or Division II school, you must have a .0 GPA (or better) in your core courses. Standardized test (SAT and ACT) scores, combined with your high school grades, are used to predict your academic success in college. Enrolling in Advanced Placement (AP) courses, which take an in-depth look at a subject, show your dedication to challenging yourself in high school and allow college freshmen to test out of or get college credit for the course.

Extracurricular activities and volunteer work show that you are responsible enough to handle the pressures of school and your sport, while still taking part in other activities.

There are some great programs that can help you study and raise your SAT and ACT standardized test scores. Some even offer need-based financial assistance. Your personal TTR Recruiting Coach can help identify good programs in your area to meet your needs.

“The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a man’s determination.”
–Tommy Lasorda

What are the NCAA Eligibility Requirements?

The NCAA publishes a handy eligibility guide for all college-bound student athletes (download your copy here)

Amateurism certification ensures that NCAA regulations are applied uniformly for incoming student-athletes. The amateur certification process starts when college-bound Divisions I and Division II student-athletes register with the NCAA Eligibility Center ( at the beginning of their junior year in high school. NCAA Division III amateur certification is completed individually by each college or university.

NCAA Academic eligibility requirements are detailed in the Quick Reference Sheet.

NCAA recruiting rules must be followed to ensure compliance with NCAA eligibility. You can review the rules and sport-specific recruiting calendar for your sport here: NCAA Recruiting Calendars.

Your personal TTR Recruiting Coach will be happy to walk you through all the necessary steps for registration and compliance.

How do I choose the right school?

Sure, you want to play in college, but remember that playing sports is, first and foremost, a means to help pay for a great education. As the commercial says, there are over 400,000 NCAA student athletes and most of us will go pro in something other than sports. That statement drives home why your choice of academic programs, school location and even social life should play a significant role in your college selection process.

Why should I signup with TTR?

Simple- we can get results. We will get you seen, signed, and satisfied.

If you are a student-athlete who is serious about playing at the next level but are not being heavily recruited at the schools where you want to play, you need to promote yourself to college coaches.

Can I play in the MLS (for soccer)?

Yes, the MLS uses colleges like professional clubs in Europe use youth academies. 90% of the players who enter the MLS draft will have come from college.

However, do not be fooled into thinking because you don’t make it as a pro outside of the USA (if you are from there) then in America it will be easy.
It takes hard work and dedication to turn professional.

No matter what level you play at in the US, if you stand out, you will be seen.

College Coaches Don't Recruit Online?

Do colleges locate and recruit prospects online? Generally, they do not. Colleges will use the internet to gather recruiting information on potential prospects only if the information comes from a proven trustworthy source, like TTR. There are thousands of athlete profiles online. Most of these athletes are not true college prospects and coaches don’t waste their time checking them all. The information contained in these profiles is often exaggerated and inaccurate and college coaches are not fooled. The opportunity to play college sports must be earned, and posting your profile online doesn’t make you a prospect and does not convince college coaches that you are a prospect. You must first have the qualifications to play college sports. If you do, and if you are enrolled with The Talent Recruiters, the web can be a tremendous tool for up-to-date scouting information on you. TTR was the very first organization to use the internet for scouting and recruiting. Today, college coaches still rely on our prospects information as evidenced by our website hits each month.

Why do colleges use TTR if they do their own recruiting?

Recruiting and scouting are not the same thing. TTR is a scouting company that provides colleges with prospect information they need to initiate the recruiting process. NCAA rules allow only college personnel to be involved in the actual recruiting of a prospective student-athlete. However, athletes must be scouted before they can be recruited. Because of strict NCAA rules and limited recruiting budgets and personnel, it is difficult for individual coaches to scout prospects nationwide. This is where TTR plays an important role. TTR’s field scouts locate good prospects, pre-qualify them and then provide college coaches with comprehensive reports and evaluation videos. TTR has worked with colleges since 1980 so college coaches know and respect our personnel and their judgments. Because of our long-standing relationship with coaches at every level across America, TTR athletes enjoy a huge recruiting advantage over prospects who attempt to get noticed the old school ways, that is, by promoting themselves and hoping they will be seen at a club/travel event.

Why do we need the TTR program if colleges already know about all the good players?

It is a myth that colleges know about all the good players. You may attend a small school or be on a losing team or play a position on your team that would eliminate you as a college prospect for that position which is a common situation. You might not receive help from your coach. You might be a late bloomer. Or, you might be involved in a minor sport which receives little or no publicity. In these cases, most college coaches probably won’t know about you. Recognition, of course, is only the first step in the recruiting process. Being known by college coaches actually means very little. Convincing them that you are the best prospect for their program is the key. This is what TTR does for you.

If my coach recommends me to some colleges, will that get me a scholarship?

In most cases the answer is no. Years ago, when your parents and coaches were in high school, a coach’s recommendation was enough to get a prospect a scholarship offer, but this is rarely the case anymore. Every high school coach recommends players, just like you, but the volume of players qualified for college sports has grown far beyond the number of scholarships available. Many players now must compete for the same scholarship. A prospect must have exceptional talent, good academics and high personal standards in character and ethics. Coaches closely screen and thoroughly evaluate a prospect before awarding a scholarship. The in-depth information they receive from TTR is often the determining factor in this decision-making process.

Why do we need TTR if our child wants to attend a college close to home?

There are two mistakes in this approach. First, it is problematic to assume that any of the college programs close to your home will have a specific need which your child meets or that the coaches have not already identified the prospects they want to make offers to. Being local does not give you an advantage. Second, it is a mistake to predetermine which college you want your child to attend. Your child is better served by being promoted more widely, regionally or even nationally. This will allow you to field and compare your options when the time comes for a decision. You may still choose a local college, but you will know that your choice was based on several important considerations, including the opportunity for your child to get the best education while still being able to participate in college sports. Moreover, a local college is more likely to make an impressive offer to your child if he or she is being recruited regionally or nationally.

What is Title IX?

Sometimes known as the Gender Equity Rule, Title IX is a federal law and not an NCAA rule. Basically, it requires schools to provide women with the same educational opportunities as well as athletic facilities, funding and advantages as the male athletes at the same college. Further, it means both men and women should have equal opportunity to receive an athletic scholarship and to participate in their sport. Colleges are required to provide scholarships in women’s sports proportionate in numbers to those given in men’s sports. To comply with this law, many colleges have had to establish new women’s sports programs. Since they often have only a small recruiting budget for these sports, they rely heavily on outside sources like TTR to help them scout qualified prospects. TTR has enjoyed phenomenal success in placing athletes in women’s programs nationwide over the years.

Why does TTR charge athletes, instead of colleges, for their services?

The parents of individual athletes pay for our services because of NCAA rules. Colleges are not allowed to pay agents or agencies for recruiting services if these companies make personal contact with the athletes. If we accepted compensation from colleges, we would become their agent and therefore come under their NCAA recruiting guidelines. We can establish our own qualifying standards for athlete acceptance and assure coaches we only recommend top quality prospects. We are free to scout and make personal contact with prospects as often as we wish without jeopardizing their eligibility or causing the colleges to break any NCAA rules. This is an enormous advantage for prospects. When NCAA rules do not allow contact between a coach and prospect, TTR scouts may serve as a go-between which is within the rules.

Do colleges recruit players on club teams?

Yes. The traditional method of college coaches scouting only high school contests and talking to high school coaches about their prospects has changed. In fact, we rarely see coaches attending high school contests. Instead, college coaches go where the better players are competing, which means club or travel competitions. College coaches spend a big part of their recruiting time attending tournaments and showcases to scout and evaluate potential prospects. In some of the larger events, there could be hundreds of teams and thousands of prospects competing. Obviously, all of the college coaches attending can’t scout and evaluate all the players. In fact, coaches are not there to discover players. They are looking at specific players they already know about. If you are a prospect who wants to be noticed by college coaches, you must get their attention and create some interest before coaches come to scout these events. Your objective is to get on their recruiting list. It’s up to you to see that they have all your statistics, know your strengths and potential, and have video readily available demonstrating your skills. If you are enrolled with The Talent Recruiters, we will see that every coach attending, as well as those not attending, has all this information on you before they arrive.

When will I receive college questionnaires?

Colleges are allowed to send questionnaires to prospects when they become a high school freshman. However, this only happens once colleges become aware of you. Most good players should start receiving questionnaires by their sophomore year. Questionnaires are a great indicator of where you are in the recruiting process. Even if you are a decorated player, if you are not receiving questionnaires, that means coaches do not know about you, your abilities and your qualifications.

If I receive a lot of questionnaires, does this mean that I am being recruited by these colleges and they are likely to make me an offer?

No. College questionnaires are not an official part of the recruiting process. This is why colleges are not restricted by NCAA rules from sending them. Receipt of a questionnaire from a college means they know who you are, but it does not mean they are formally recruiting you.. Colleges send hundreds of questionnaires to potential prospects. Most are weeded out through the scouting and evaluation process as the coaching staffs learn more about each prospect. The better the information they have on you, the better your chances are of not being dropped from consideration. If you have not received questionnaires and you are already a junior in high school, it is very likely you are being overlooked and you should be seriously concerned. I f you qualify, TTR can help give you the necessary exposure quickly and continuously.

Is a video important to college recruiters?

Absolutely. Most college recruiters say that a quality personal evaluation video is the single most valuable information source used in the scouting of an athlete. However, bad or incomplete videos, like the short video clips sometimes posted on the internet, are really useless. They do not show the types of abilities college coaches need to start the recruiting process. Usually, college recruiters cannot personally observe most prospects that they recruit and therefore they have to rely on good quality video to properly evaluate a prospect. Many prospects are eliminated from consideration at this stage of the recruiting process because prospects are unable to provide coaches with quality video to use for a more in-depth evaluation. For the past 25 years hundreds of colleges, at all levels, have depended on The Talent Recruiters to provide them with these top quality prospect videos. Perhaps more importantly is that nearly every TTR prospects’ skill and/or game footage is available on their websites for coaches to evaluate in their office, at home or when they are on the road scouting and recruiting.

When can college coaches contact me?

NCAA rules are very strict regarding college coach contacts. A coach usually cannot contact you until your senior year and even then these contacts are limited. Personal contact occurs during the last phase of the recruiting process, so you must be proactive and make them want to recruit you. The TTR Game Plan puts you in touch with coaches when the rules allow. Your TTR scout will guide you through the process to make sure that you and your family are complying with all recruiting rules. Prior to your senior year, your scout can contact coaches for you and even help to set up unofficial campus visits to get acquainted with a college, the coach and the team.

What percent of TTR prospects receive offers?

Many colleges contact our prospects. We have no way of knowing exactly how many offers each athlete receives or the value of each scholarship since we are not a party to the college scholarship offers. However, according to our surveys, over 90% receive offers. In some minor sports, up to 100% receive offers. NCAA rules prohibit scouting services, including TTR, from being directly involved in scholarship offers or from taking a fee based on an offer. And, scouting services cannot offer enrollment discounts. All fees must be consistent.

When should I enroll with TTR?

If you are in high school, you should enroll just as soon as you are considered a legitimate potential college prospect in your sport and have been qualified by an TTR scout. It is never too early. Colleges begin their recruiting interest as early as the ninth grade. The sooner coaches receive your scouting reports and recommendations from TTR, the better your chances are of being noticed, evaluated and recruited. Even your freshman year is not too soon.

Should I attend an athletic combine?

Attending an evaluation combine to demonstrate your individual athletic skills can be a good way to document these skills for recruiting purposes. However, it can be a double-edged sword because while a combine can demonstrate your good skills it can also shed light on your bad ones. This could actually do you more harm than good. College coaches rarely attend combines even though promoters usually advertise that hundreds of college coaches have been invited to attend. However, if you feel that you are in excellent condition and fully prepared to perform at your best, a combine can be an excellent showcase for your talent and is a nice addition to your resume.

Will TTR guarantee me a scholarship?

No. But, we will guarantee that you will not be left out of consideration because colleges did not know about you and your qualifications. You will have the opportunity show every college in the country how much you want to play and how well you have done athletically and academically. On video, you can show them what you can do. If you are truly capable of playing at the college level, chances are very good that you will have the opportunity to do so. Without the help of TTR, however, you may find yourself competing with athletes who have equal ability, but have the advantage of being enrolled with TTR. Consistent and continuous quality exposure brings results.

Can I transfer from one college to another?

You are able to transfer from one college to another so long as you have earned at least 24 credit hours at the initial university you attended. If you were to transfer more than on one occasion during your college career then you will be asked to sit-out a full year of competition in order to regain your eligibility. Acceptance of college credit from one university to another will be decided by the admissions office at the receiving university. There is a chance that not all credits will be transferable and these cases are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

What is the NCAA?

The NCAA is the most recognized association with the most schools registered and scholarship money available. Within the NCAA there are 3 divisions an athlete may compete in.

What is the NAIA?

The oldest association is the NAIA. Universities under the NAIA typically are smaller in size than universities compared to the NCAA. They also offer very competitive programs for student athletes.

What is the NJCAA or junior college?

Junior colleges are 2 year universities that allow student athletes, typically who started the recruitment process late or have less academic standards, to gain entry into collegiate sports. An athlete will either enroll into the NJCAA or CCCAA for two years and obtain an associates degree with transfer option to a four year university to complete his or her bachelor’s degree.

How do I get an academic scholarship?

Student athletes are also eligible for academic scholarships if their grades and test scores qualify. Academic scholarships become great opportunities for athletes if they’re not able to secure an athletic scholarship or they need more financial aid in addition to a smaller athletic scholarship package. To earn an academic scholarship, you need to have strong grades and test scores. Each university has different measures for their academic scholarship requirements, so once you start speaking with college coaches, you can ask if your grades qualify for academic money.

When do I need to sign up from the NCAA Clearinghouse

High school athletes should register for the NCAA Clearinghouse (now called the Eligibility Center) at the beginning of their junior year. However, everyone has a different recruiting experience, so some might register earlier, some later. Ultimately, only athletes who are going to compete at the Division 1 and 2 levels need to register with the NCAA Eligibility Center.

It’s a good idea to start conversations with college coaches at programs you’re interested in before you register for the NCAA Clearinghouse. This is to confirm that you do have interest from either D1 or D2 schools before you spend unnecessary time and money to register.

When you do register, a college coach will need to ask that your profile be placed on the Institutional Request List (IRL). College coaches use the NCAA Eligibility Center to verify your academics and your amateurism. Only when a coach does this will your information be processed. Also, until you register with the Clearinghouse, you will not be allowed to go on official visits to schools or receive official scholarship offers.

Can professional athletes get sport scholarships?

No, you must be classified as an amateur sports athlete.

Do all universities offer sport scholarships?

While all colleges and universities offer different kinds of scholarships, they don’t all have athletic scholarships. Only NCAA Division 1 and 2, NAIA and NJCAA schools can offer scholarships to all sport athletes. However, Ivy League schools and NCAA Division 3 schools do not have athletic scholarships. These programs use financial aid from other parts of the university, but not from the athletic department. Being a strong student and athlete will help you find more college opportunities and get financial aid. Make sure you work hard to be a well-rounded student athlete; college coaches are only interested in athletes who succeed in both the classroom and on the field.

What are the standards needed for an academic scholarship?

To qualify for a college academic scholarship, you will need to meet certain requirements. While these specific requirements will vary with each school, the idea is the same. If you work hard and maintain a high GPA and do well on the SAT/ACT, then you could be rewarded with an academic scholarship. Per the NCAA you need a minimum 2.0 GPA and a 1100 on the SAT as well as a combined score of 86 on the ACT. These requirements are on a sliding scale, so if you have a higher GPA then your test scores can be relatively low.

College coaches want to see that you are a strong athlete and student. In addition to earning an athletic scholarship, you could also earn some academic financial aid if the coach thinks you meet the institution’s requirements. If you think you might qualify to earn an academic scholarship, do some research at the schools that you have applied to or plan on applying to. You can only earn a scholarship from the school if you have applied and been accepted. You can also talk to the coach and see if they might be able to add an academic scholarship to your financial aid package.

How long does it take to get a sport scholarship?

The length of the recruiting process is different for every student athlete. Ideally, you should start the recruiting process as soon as your 1st year in High School. There is a ton of information to know about the recruiting process so being prepared once you start high school is a good idea. Doing research or obtaining the help of a recruiting service are both great ways to help you get ready for the recruiting process as you enter high school. Start by scheduling the core courses you need to be eligible for the NCAA. Once you have your classes set, start researching colleges you’re interested in. You’ll also want to put together a resume that highlights your athletic and academic accolades, with a recruiting video and a short cover letter telling the coach why you’re interested in their program. Then start contacting coaches and sending them your resume.

What is the National Letter of Intent (NLI) ?

This is a binding contract between you and the school for one year. Once you have signed this contract you are committed to that school for one year and you are no longer eligible to sign with a different program.

What happens if I change my mind after signing the NLI?

You are bound to the agreement signed with the NLI. If you do not honor your NLI you lose one year of Eligibility and must serve one year’s residence at your next NLI institution before receiving a scholarship.

What is redshirting?

You are allowed five years to compete four years at the college level. If you are eligible to compete but choose to sit out that year it is called you redshirt year.

What is gray shirting?

You are allowed five years to compete four years. If you have experienced a season ending injury, medical or family emergency you can apply for an extra year of eligibility. This extra year is known as a Grayshirt.

What is the quiet period?

Coaches cannot evaluate you nor have any in-person contact with you from outside of their college campus. You can visit a coach on their campus during this time. Coaches can write or call you during this time.

What does a full ride sport scholarship cover?

A ‘full’ or ‘100%’ scholarship covers the cost of tuition, room, board, books and sports related clothing & equipment.

What is an athletic scholarship?

These are awarded to students who are going to compete on behalf of the school in sanctioned athletic competitions. You are not guaranteed a scholarship if you are going to play sports at your school. The possibility and amounts of each scholarship depend on the team and University.

How long does a sport scholarship last?

Sports scholarships are given on a yearly basis, however some schools will offer scholarships for the complete duration of an athletes study. At the end of each year, scholarships are renewed by the coach and athletic department, provided that you remain eligible throughout the year. You are allowed to be on athletic scholarships for up to five years in your college career. Coaches are able to adjust the amount of the scholarship at the end of each year when it expires. That means they can increase, decrease, or get canceled altogether.

In order to make sure that you maintain your good status and keep your scholarship, you need to make sure you do what is expected of you. As a student-athlete, that means keeping up in your classes, getting good grades, training and contributing to your team. If for some reason you become ineligible in any way, the coach has full right to give your scholarship away to someone else.

How do I know I'm good enough to qualify for an academic or sport scholarship?

Easy go to > contact us < and our TTR Scholarships team will reach out to you to start the qualification process. During this process we will be able to determine how much scholarship money you will qualify for and what types of schools and divisions you can participate in.

What is sport scholarship stipend?

Coaches will offer scholarship stipends to extremely talented athletes to help cover the cost of:

> Food off campus
> Flights to school
> Clothing
> Additional training

The average stipend is around $6000 per year

What does a sport scholarship not cover?

A sport scholarship will not cover:
> SAT Registration – average $125
> Toefl registration – average $195 (International student only)
> NCAA or NAIA clearinghouse fee – average $125
> Visa – average $450 (International student only)
> Flights – average $750 (Unless a stipend is received)
> Spending money – average $1000 (Unless a stipend is received)