USTA held its first College Showcase this last weekend in Waco. It brought together high school athletes and college tennis coaches from around the southwest.
More than 50 boys attended on Saturday and about that many girls on Sunday, playing matches – both singles and doubles – with coaches observing. At lunch an excellent information session provided great advice on the recruiting process.
Some highlights from the session:
Sign Up for CoreCourseGPA to enable NCAA recruiting and authorize GHS to verify NCAA eligibility
Sign up for UniversalTennis to access your UTR - a rating used by colleges in recruiting
Play USTA tournaments - especially Challengers - to improve your UTR score (High school matches are not yet figured into the UTR rating, but will be soon)
Freshmen, Sophomores & Juniors - Start a list of colleges you'd like to attend and begin communicating with the coaches and schedule unofficial visits
Seniors - Narrow down the list and ask for an Official visit
Most important - Grades, grades, grades - regardless of athletic talent, grades will be the deciding factor
As a general guide, Division I schools will recruit the Top 25 players in Texas, Division II will recruit the Top 50, Division III the Top 100, NJCAA and NAIA below the Top 100 - though there are exceptions.
Schools attending included NCAA Divisions I, II and III, as well as Junior College Division I and NAIA. Some of those participating were Angelo State, Texas A&M @ Kingsville, Texas Wesleyan, Dallas Baptist, Hardin-Simmons, Howard Payne and Southwestern, among others.
It’s expected the College Showcase will become an annual event. If this inaugural weekend is any indication, it was a resounding success and will likely be highly recommended – especially for Juniors and Seniors interested in college tennis.