Simply put it this way… Playing just for your high school Soccer team is not anyplace near enough to get recruiting attention from the majority colleges. Men’s soccer is a sport where competitive club teams are very influential, and college soccer coaches expect that the candidates have plenty of club soccer experience.
Coaches do a huge portion of their recruiting at club soccer tournaments, which offer access and exposure for the coaches to observe a large amount of soccer players in just one weekend. To play in college, soccer players need no less than three years of experience playing for an elite club, and five years or more for a local travel competitive club.
It also depends on your soccer club’s management and in how many tournaments they place you in and are they the tournaments that attract the most college coaches.
Tournaments that include clubs and teams from the U.S. Soccer Development Academy (USSDA) clubs and the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) and the National Premier Leagues (NPL) and they will also lookclose into players from state and regional Olympic Development Program (ODP) teams. The ODP offers small and local club players to be found!
Statistics find that if you’re only playing high school soccer your chances of playing college soccer are close to nothing. Girls 2.1% and Boys 0.8%. Playing club soccer your odds fly higher: Girls 7.9% and Boys 4.3%. So, do the math!
Why are college coaches attracted in the most to Club Soccer players?
Talking to dozens of coaches in the NCAA, NJCAA and the NAIA in most they all say the same thing:
High school soccer is very basic and the coaches are usually teachers at the school in the most they have very little experience.
50% of High School soccer players are not involved in club soccer, so they’re inactive 9 months a year.
High School tournaments are scars and usually last a single day, with at the most 8 teams involved.
For most athletes, their club or high school coach can serve as an advocate who can get them over the hump in the recruitment process. The biggest issue is that the high school coaches really don’t get involved in the college recruiting process, mostly because they don’t know how and in other cases they really don’t care. They could advise athletes on the right level of play in college or talk to college coaches at programs that players have been in contact with, but I have seen this in the most only at a competitive club level.
Don’t get me wrong. I know high school soccer coaches that get deeply involved in the athlete recruiting, but I can count them on the fingers of one hand.