Athletics News

Shooting For College

March 27, 2013

By Angela Kraus

Thanks to all of you who stopped by to introduce yourselves and chat during the JO College Expos before the competitions began! It was great to meet you, and to have a chance to talk. Also, thank you to everyone who has written since the first article appeared in the last issue of Skip Shot Magazine. I’m always happy to hear from you and answer your questions as completely as possible, so feel free to write if you have any questions, or if you’d like to receive previous articles you might have missed.


In order to become an intercollegiate student-athlete, a student has to satisfy NCAA eligibility requirements. Division I schools require athletes to graduate from high school, complete 16 core courses in eight semesters of high school, earn at least a 2.0 GPA in the core courses and at least the minimum SAT or ACT sum score that matches the core course GPA based on the NCAA test-score sliding scale. Division II schools require athletes to complete 14 core courses, but starting in Fall 2013, entering freshmen must achieve the same standards required for DI schools. Athletes must satisfy these requirements in order to become eligible to compete and be considered for athletic scholarships. DIII schools do not have similar requirements, and no NCAA certification is required to compete for DIII schools. Bear in mind that these are minimum academic eligibility requirements established by the NCAA to ensure that athletes are prepared for college and can earn degrees. Individual colleges have their own and often higher or different standards, so be sure to check the specific requirements of each school being considered.

Register with NCAA Eligibility Center

The NCAA regulates all athletic recruiting to ensure that prospective student-athletes are prepared to succeed academically in college and graduate  in a reasonable amount of time, that they are amateurs, and that there is no undue or inappropriate influence in the recruiting process. Once deciding to pursue intercollegiate athletics, a student-athlete should register with the NCAA Eligibility Center at Usually this is done during the second semester of the junior year, and definitely by the beginning of the senior year.

Final NCAA Certification

Before the end of their senior year, student-athletes are contacted by the NCAA Eligibility Center and asked to update their questionnaires to reconfirm their eligibility. This is required in order to receive final certification as amateur athletes. They are also required to send final high school transcripts and proof of graduation so the NCAA Eligibility Center can certify to their colleges that they’re eligible to engage in intercollegiate competition. Finally, before or shortly after reporting to college, student-athletes are asked by their collegiate athletic departments to complete several forms, including those dealing with eligibility and compliance, and to attend on-campus NCAA compliance meetings.

Questions? Write to Angela Kraus at Angela is an experienced and certified college counselor providing comprehensive services to help students prepare for and ensure eligibility for graduation from high school and admission to colleges. A special focus of her practice is advising high school athletes as they pursue the athletic recruiting process, with an emphasis on water polo players.

This article was originally printed in the Fall 2011 issue of SkipShot Magazine.




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