There are hundreds of decisions that go into choosing a college. You’ll end up making some good ones and probably some not-so-good ones. As a result, you’ll learn every step of the way. If you start early enough, you’ll even get better at making those decisions.
But there are mistakes that could make or break your college experience.
It’s hard to think about recruiting process mistakes when you are in high school excelling at your sport and having a great time. You think college will just fall into place the same way high school did for you, right?
What if you knew that the wrong college choice could be disastrous for you? What if you knew that transferring colleges could set you back academically and even delay graduation?
Happiness is not a given when it comes to your college experience.
However, you can put yourself in the best possible situation to find happiness in college. It equates to finding fit. No matter where you go to college, or if you become a star for your team, or if you are near or far from your hometown, you WILL NOT be happy unless you find fit. That is a fact.
It takes time, effort, commitment, guidance, work, and diligence to find the right college fit for you.
To help you learn more about potential mistakes in your future college decision, and to help you avoid them, we’ve put together some thoughts from college athletes and coaches.
Below are some of the decisions that later became mistakes or regrets for some athletes in choosing a college. These examples are based on Find My Team conversations with college athletes.
The reason some decisions turn into mistakes is that once the athletes get to campus, they begin to realize that it’s not a good fit. They had a different vision for what the experience was supposed to be like.
You may think that one size fits all when it comes to being a student-athlete in college, but that is far from the truth. Every situation is different. Every college would give you a different experience academically, athletically and culturally.
Which one is best for you?
Your goal is to find the college experience that most appeals to your needs, wants and values. There are plenty of choices, no matter what level of play you choose. You just need to search and research as much as you can to find that place for you.
It’s not just the high school athletes that make mistakes or who have regrets with decisions made during the recruiting process. It happens to college coaches, too.
Below are some results we found, based on conversations with college coaches.
These lists are short, but they give you an idea of what goes into the process for both student-athletes and college coaches. It is not easy for either side to find the right fit, but, if you work hard to find the answers you need, the decision-making improves.
Your future should be very important to you. It’s hard to think about it as a high school student-athlete, but it is critical to be serious about your recruiting process if you want to find happiness in college and be set with your career after college.
You CAN find the right college choice for you. You deserve it. You put in the work to become a good student. You put in the work to become a good athlete. You just need to put in the work to find your future home, the one that will provide you a great place to play sports and the most promise of a career after you graduate college.
Learn why the culture inside and outside the sports program matters.
Learn how to research diversity, equity and inclusion on college campuses.