Chris Webner » I Want To Be a College Student-Athlete

I Want To Be a College Student-Athlete

I) I Want to be a College Student-Athlete!

If you want to play college sports or get athletic scholarship – apply with NAIA & NCAA

This process which has helped PHS students obtain sports scholarships in past-
1) Gr. 10-11; Talk with high school coach for realistic understanding of what level(s) of competition they may be able to successfully pursue, non-school coaches as well. Speak with private coaches of yours as well. Often coaches have contacts at college level they can use to help you.
  • Look at the performances typical for different sports at the various levels of college competition (NCSA Athletic Recruiting Sports Specific Recruiting Guide), consider with your HS coach what it would take to accomplish those performances
2) Remember the best people to know about your abilities are coaches from our conference and the game/match officials. These are people you want to speak well of you when a college recruiter asks them about potential recruits from our athletic conference(s).
3) Help the college coach evaluate you for their program -
  • Contact college coach & ask if you can visit their campus to perform & be evaluated by their coaching staff
  • Attend their sports camp for HS ages
  • Ask that coach if they are going to attend other camps, then sign up for those camps
  • If your sport has a private summer league, join it, know the competition schedule, then share that schedule with college coach
  • Use school HUDL program account to create highlights, or use your own videos (YouTube) to have website where college coach can visit to see you performing
    • Often college coaches want to see entire game tapes, so your HS coach must give them that access (part of why you want your HS coach & potential college coach to be in communication)
4) As you get mail, texts, and communication from college coaches, follow through when they ask you register to come to their camp, attend a skill assessment clinic, or visit their college. 
5) “No books, no looks” is a phrase that is meant to encourage students to do great in school be more valuable to college. 
  • Colleges often give coaches ACT & GPA guidelines in addition to those set by their athletic membership (NCAA or NAIA). 
  • Apply for admission to colleges after your Grade 11 transcript is complete, to give coaches chance to see your academics, along with NCAA &/or NAIA eligibility checkers….
6) Be a good recruit. Often college coaches are rewarded for having good team gpa's, team members who stay out of trouble, give back to their communities through volunteer work, and have good sports performances - show during high school you can do these things

Levels of College Sports Programs in Iowa
  • Division 1 & 2 – NCAA Eligibility Guide required, complete online at
    • For 2016 and beyond, see new NCAA requirements at
    • NCAA Update pdf: September 10, 2012 letter to HS - attached below
      • increased GPA to 2.300
      • must complete 10 of 16 required core courses by end of Grade 11
      • re-taking core courses not allowed for one of 16 required courses during Grade 12
      • increased overall core GPA are paired to ACT/SAT on sliding scale
    • Division I Sliding Scale, NCAA ACT-GPA scale from UNI using GPA & ACT (shared by UNI spring 2014)
  • Division 3 – Division III does not use the NCAA Eligibility Center. Contact your Division 3 college regarding its policies on admission, financial aid, practice and competition.
  • NAIA – NAIA Eligibility List required, complete application online at
    • Give HS counselor NAIA form to send in your transcript (pdf file below has the form and notes on the 3 different guidelines seniors can use to meet NAIA eligibility).
  • Iowa Community (Junior) College Athletic Conference, see 16 Iowa Colleges Are Members Sports Per College (your community college will assist you with NJCAA Eligibility process)

NCAA1, NCAA2, NAIA, & NJCAA programs offer athletic scholarships while the NCAA3 programs do not offer athletic scholarships.

Iowa’s College Athletic Memberships
Division 1
Iowa State University of Science & Technology, Ames –
University of Iowa, Iowa City –
University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls –
Drake University, Des Moines (though football is in a nonathletic scholarship competitive conference) -

Division 2

NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) in Iowa are primarily level 2 status allows for scholarship covering tuition, but not room & board/meal plan.
Dordt College & Waldorf college do offer two-year associate degrees, as done by all community colleges
2.5 GPA & 18 ACT minimums for freshman year competition