Academics is another pillar of a successful college recruiting campaign - the better your grades, the more choices you will have. We cannot stress the importance of that simple fact, yet so many great high school athletes limit their ability to play at the next level with poor grades. The NCAA has minimum GPA and SAT/ACT scores for academic eligibility - if you do not meet them you will not be recruited - no exceptions. Moreover, colleges have their own academic standards for admission, just because you're an athlete does not mean they'll accommodate your poor grades. In fact, if you just meet the NCAA minimum academic standards, you can write off about 600 colleges.
Many high school athletes operate under the misnomer that their junior year is the most important academic year. Whoever tells that to a high school athlete is doing them a great disservice. Here's why - any offer for a scholarship or acceptance to a program will be made in your senior year and will be based on your first three years. If you enter your junior year with a sub par GPA, it will be almost impossible to make any meaningful improvement in your junior year.
Another important consideration is going to be your ability to earn academic scholarships. Full ride athletic scholarships are rare in most college sports (football and basketball excepted) and academic scholarships are a great way to close the gap. What if your only offer is from an institution who is offering you a 30% athletic scholarship and the cost of attending is $30,000? Can your family afford $20,000 a year for you to play college sports?
All members are provided with NCAA Academic Worksheets to track their academic progress and to ensure that that grades meet NCAA academic standards. Simply fill out the worksheet and update it every quarter to track your grades to make sure you're staying in the right direction.
"If you don't know where you are going, you'll never get there."