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Here are 10 things players need to know/do to play at the next level:  

 1. Work hard both off and on the field.  Playing well is the key to being noticed but a good GPA and a strong SAT will open the door to college.  Obtain a copy of NCAA Guide For College Bound Athletes.  A free copy can be obtained by calling 1.800.638.3731.  This will help you plot a course for the remainder of your high school years.  Please note: Membership in the NCAA is NOT necessary for junior or two year colleges.  GPA and SAT are very important in these schools.  They do not want to invest in a player who can't make the grade.  Some schools have asked perspective homeschooled students to obtain a GED and submit SAT scores before admittance.  

2.  Register with the NCAA Initial-Eligibility Clearinghouse.  As a Homeschooling parent, you will need to keep great records!   

From the NCAA website:
Home School Information 
Use high school code "969999" as the high school code for any home school coursework. 
 
This information is for those who have attended a home school or nontraditional school for either all or part of their high school career. In order to evaluate your certification status for purposes of NCAA athletics initial eligibility, please submit the following information to the Eligibility Center:
  • Completed student release form.
  • Fee payment.
  • Standardized test score (ACT and/or SAT). Must be submitted directly from the testing agency. Note that test scores received on a transcript cannot be used by the Eligibility Center. A Student Score Report or scores taken directly from a Student Score Report cannot be accepted by the Eligibility Center for initial-eligibility purposes.
  • Home school transcript that includes:
    • Course titles;
    • Course grades;
    • Units of credit for courses;
    • Grading scale ( if numeric grading is used, alpha/letter equivalent grades are needed); and
    • Signature of the home school administrator (the parent or other person who organized, taught and evaluated the home school coursework).
  • Transcript from any other high school, college and/or nontraditional program attended (mailed directly from the issuing institution).
  • Proof of high school graduation, including specific graduation date (month/day/year).
  • Evidence that home schooling was conducted in accordance with state laws (a written statement from the home school administrator verifying compliance with state home school legislation). Please attach any supporting documentation.
  • A statement of who taught and evaluated the coursework, awarded grades and issued credit.
  • List of textbooks used throughout home schooling [course title, textbook title, publisher name and book level (if applicable)].
There are some examples listed below for reference including a home school checklist, transcript example and textbook list. This will help provide guidance on what the Eligibility Center needs regarding home school information. 
 
If your home school coursework was taken through an established nontraditional program (e.g., correspondence, internet, tutoring, etc.) that evaluated your coursework and issues transcripts, please have that program provide a copy of your transcript and provide contact information so the Eligibility Center can obtain further information, if necessary. 
 
The Eligibility Center will evaluate home school coursework only after all required documents have been received. After the information listed above is received, the Eligibility Center may need to request additional information or clarification before completing an academic certification. 
 
HOME SCHOOL EVALUATION ADDRESS:
NCAA Eligibility Center (ATTN: Home School Evaluation)
1802 Alonzo Watford Sr. Drive
Indianapolis, IN 46202-6222
 
Phone: 877/ 262-1492 or 317/ 223-0700. Follow the prompts or request to be directed to the home school department.

 IMPORTANT LINKS: 

Homeschool NCAA Checklist: 
https://web1.ncaa.org/eligibilitycenter/pdf/home_school_checklist_example.pdf 

NCAA Homeschool Frequently Asked Questions
http://www.ncaa.org/wps/wcm/connect/05e0f8004e0b8ac99cf8fc1ad6fc8b25/Frequently+Asked+Questions+About+Home+Schooling-Updated+2-11-09.pdf?MOD=AJPERES&CACHEID=05e0f8004e0b8ac99cf8fc1ad6fc8b25

Note:  The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) has its own clearinghouse and eligibility registration.  NAIA requirements are less onerous than the NCAA.  Players interested in an NAIA program(s) check the website at: http://www.playnaia.org/.    


 3.  Register for the SAT through College Board or ACT online.  Upon registering for the SAT when adding colleges for score reports, add the NCAA  Clearinghouse.  It's code is 9999.  The NCAA Guide for College Bound Athletes will help you determine the GPA and SAT scores needed for eligibility.  Having an 1100 combined on the verbal and math will, in most cases, be rewarded with an academic scholarship.   

4.  Visit colleges before your senior year.  Try to spend Sophomore & Junior year taking one day trips to colleges of interest.  Contact your coach and ask him to call the college coach and set up an available date for you to meet.  These visits usually consist of the College coach showing you around the campus, talking about what his expectations will be, and there will be a short try out.  Try to observe your favorite school's teams in game situations.  

5. Get on a Showcase team by your Junior year.  Look for a team that will be playing where College coaches and big league scouts are present.  Make the most of every minute on the field.  Coaches and scouts may come to see one person but if you shine...they will take notice.  This is a very important tool for acquiring invitations to different events and schools.  This will open doors to more college opportunities and draft status.  

6.  In your Junior year try to decide whether a 2 year or 4 year school is best for your situation.  Each has benefits and drawbacks.  Begin to narrow down a list of the schools you want to visit or entertain a try out with.  

7.  Larger four year schools often have commitments from the "best" players by the end of their Junior year.  "Best" players are often those in larger public school teams.  Smaller four year or two year schools will be out looking and making offers the fall and spring of Senior year.  Colleges will first contact your coach then the student.  Colleges and scouts want to speak directly to perspectives.  Some colleges will call and offer scholarships over the phone and request a visit with the athlete.  Most will request a visit and tryout, then an offer will be made.  Athlete, always be polite!  Your courtesy or lack of will develop a likewise reputation.   

8.  Senior year, get a physical!  College coaches will sometimes ask for the results of a Complete Physical performed within the past 5-6 months.  

9.  In the Senior year, visits are really invitations from college coaches.  On a Senior year visit, the school can feed and place the athlete in a dorm or hotel.  This cannot be done before the Senior year.  Visits usually consist of a tour around the school and a tryout.  Most visits are for the day others may be overnight.   

10.    Please know when a college offers a scholarship it is on a year by year basis and may not cover all your school expenses.  Expenses can include: tuition, books, food, and housing.  Ask if there are other scholarships or grants to help. 

11. (Bonus)  Remember ... Your baseball career and future are yours. So, take charge.  Ask for help and support where needed, but ultimately, it is up to you. Sitting back and waiting for a college opportunity to happen is foolish.  Try to find the best baseball experience that goes with the best academic/college experience for you.  Then, go visit that school and make contact with the coaches there.  Be bold. Be proactive. 

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Spring, Texas 77379

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