My oldest daughter, Madisyn, is in her freshman year of college plaing NAIA soccer. I have another daughter, Makenzy, in her junior year of HS and we are begining the process of talking to colleges and thinking of where she would like to go (PLAY). You see they both started playing soccer at age 4. The dream wasn’t always to play soccer but at some point that changed and that was what became the goal (pun intended).
When Madisyn started the mission of deciding where to go to college the dream was big. A big school and far away from home. As she approched her senior year she wasn’t sure that she still wanted to play soccer at all. I think a lot of it had to do with she wasn’t getting noticed by the schools she was hoping. She was getting noticed but not by “the” schools. As we weighed the pros and cons of EVERYTHING a couple of offers came in and a decision was made. Now here I am again starting the decision making process and I have had this huge realization that we have placed our girls in this world with extrememly talented players, playing against extremely talented players. All of those players who want to play in college, are getting offers.
The expectations of getting offers are high! When the offers aren’t flooding in there is a level of disappointment and no matter how much we tell the girls that it is an honor to get ANY offer that is unbelievable in the world they are living in. In their world girls are getting offers left and right. Recruits are coming to watch games and talking to coaches about their teammates at any given game. This truly is not how it is in the rest of the world.
For the sake of my curiosity I looked up percentages for just girls soccer, because lets face it thats all that really matters at the moment, at least in our lives.
There are 388,339 High School girls playing soccer
There are 27,638 NCAA players
That means 7.1% of High School girl soccer players go on to play in college (NCAA)
Of those 2.4% are D1, 1.9% are D2, and 2.8% are D3
Now how do we convince our daughters that ANY and ALL offers are super exciting and very impressive? I don’t know the answer to that because as of this moment on the field my daughter is playing with 3-D1 commints, 4-D2 commits, and 1-D3 commit. That is 36% of the girls she plays with commited to play at the college level.(I googled that percentage because my math ability is sketch) Those girls range from sophmores to seniors, which means that percentage will go up by the time Makenzy graduates. It’s just another day on the soccer field for your teammate to get an offer. We strive to provide a top level of play for our athletic daughers but the expectations they place on themselves are a bit insane. They have no clue that an offer from any college is an amazing accomplishment.
Don’t get me wrong we will continue to make the drive to ID camps and we will continue to take her to all the extra training she wants and we will do our best to drive to the teams that offer the highest level of play, but we also have to find away to make her realize that she is just down right fortunate to have the opportunity to be surround by so much talent!
Take the time to tell your daughters to look around at their team mates and be in awe of the level of talent they get to play with on a regular basis. Have them look in the mirror and pat themselves on the back for the hard work that goes into becoming a college athlete. They are doing it and have no idea that they are a rare few that get to live out their dreams.