Get your grades up. They must be 2.0 or better in solid college prep curriculum. Do some academic planning, making sure you take all of the right college prep courses and get prepared for the SATs. Take any Advanced Placement (AP) courses you can handle.
Find a good club team & play year round
Aim at making high school varsity as a sophomore
Try out for ODP - the Olympic Development Program ... but, don’t worry if
you don’t make it.
In the tenth and eleventh grade get somebody to shoot video footage of you in games. This will go in your packages you send out to coaches.
(THE MOST IMPORTANT YEAR)
Make sure your grades are good .. somewhere between 3.0 and 3.5 will get you in most schools.
Take the PSAT as soon as possible. Take the SAT and ACT also, if possible.
Start on the high school varsity
Make the best club team you can - one where other D1 - (Division 1)
prospects are playing is preferred.
Make the best travel team you can - one where other NCAA D1 - (Division 1)
prospects are playing is preferred. You can only prepare for college ball by playing against the best competition you can find. A very fast speed of play and a very physical style of play are the hallmarks of college soccer. You won't generally find that in local competition. Seek out the best competition you can find.
Play year-round on as many teams as you have time for.
Begin studying colleges for educational interests and soccer program.
Develop a list of 50-75 schools which serve your educational needs - where
you could play.
Have somebody shoot video footage of you in games.
Prepare a package documenting your educational and soccer qualifications.
Include the video footage.
Send your package to each head soccer coach on your list.
SPRING OF JUNIOR YEAR AND SUMMER BEFORE SENIOR YEAR
Take the SAT and ACT if you have not already done so. When you sign up for the ACT or SAT use code 9999 to have your scores sent directly to the NCAA Clearinghouse.
Register with the NCAA Clearinghouse. You must pass certain high school core courses and score a minimum score on either the SAT or ACT test in order to be certified to participate in NCAA Division I or II athletics as a college freshman. This must be done in the month of May in their Junior year. The fee to register is $27 and the booklets with the form inside are available in most high school guidance offices. Your counselors can obtain
registration materials, at no cost, by calling the clearinghouse at 319/337- 1492. A list of instructions, questions and answers and approved core courses is on-line at NCAA Clearinghouse. If you have particular questions about the NCAA Clearinghouse, please write to: NCAA Clearinghouse, P. O. Box 4044, Iowa City, IA 52243-4044.
Keep a list of all the college soccer coaches who respond to your package.
Keep notes on your conversations with coaches, if any.
No response from a top choice? Resend your material
Make unofficial, unannounced visits to 10-12 schools you are most interested
Keep playing on as many good teams as you can.
Division 1 prospects - make the ODP pool team if you can.
Find out your high school schedule; send it and test results to college
Narrow list of top choices down to maximum of 10-15 schools.
Follow all of the NCAA's recruitment rules
DURING SENIOR YEAR SEASON
Set goal to improve your GPA.
Be a varsity impact player - starter for sure, captain, all-league or all-star,
See as many of the college teams you like play as you can - meet coaches.
Decide if there are coaches you like ... and coaches you don’t like. It is important that you get a feel for the coaching techniques of the coaching staff. The coach is going to be a different person from the one you see when she/he is recruiting you and you need to know that you can handle her/his coaching methods. Talk to players, watch games, and try to read between the lines. Remember, college ball is going to be different from high school - they have to win to keep their jobs so there is going to be a lot of pressure on them (and correspondingly you) to perform.
Analyze the style of play of the college teams - where would you fit in?
Decide if there are coaches you like ... and coaches you don’t like.
Which schools did you like? big, little, rural, city, etc. which programs?
After Senior Season
Pick 5-7 schools, send applications.
Send senior season package to college coaches where you have applied.
Keep in touch with admissions departments and college soccer coaches.
After January 1st, fill out all financial aid documents.
Continue to follow up with admissions offices, financial office & coaches until
decisions are made.
Review any new possibilities that present themselves (sudden interest from a
different coach, etc.)
Review all offers of admission and financial aid.
Revisit or make formal visits to 3 schools you are most interested in.
Pick the school with the best combination: education, financial aid, right soccer program for you.
For a club, I suggest that you collect all the packages prepared by the players (their resumes and educational summaries) and put them into book which you can have available at tournaments and showcase events in case a college coach scouts your team.