Tennis Scholarships for me?

Discussion in 'College Tennis Talk' started by Master Flow, Jun 27, 2008.

  1. Master Flow

    Master Flow New User

    Jun 19, 2008
    How do you get scholarships for college?
    Do they find you or you find them?
    How good do you need to be?

    As for me im around a 4.5 NTRP ATM, and am going to be a senior in High School. I have a high GPA (3.8), and while my tennis is still "in progress" im ready to learn/ do anything i need to to improve. I've played for 5 yrs. (while that is a negative) but i have learnt very quickly, and put in the hours to become better/equal to those that have played at an early age.

    Weakest: drop shot
    Strongest: Forehand/Serve
    Style: All-Court

    Any chances of me getting into a D2/D1(MAYBE) colllege?
  2. kctennis1005

    kctennis1005 Guest

    prob have a shot at playing at a low d1 or d2 school. prob wouldnt get a scholarship, but they might be able to help you through the admittance process. do u have a sectional or national ranking?
  3. dork2tennisstud

    dork2tennisstud Rookie

    Dec 23, 2006
    They generally won't find you unless you're insanely good, you'll have to search them out.

    You need a tape. Have someone videotape some matches or just you hitting. Look up some school you might be interested in and try to get a hold of a coach and see if he/she would like to see your tape. There are several recruiting web-sites you can join, too. I'm sure you can find them by typing in "tennis recruiting" on any search engine.

    4.5 level is usually either a D-3 stud, a really good D-2 player, or low-level D-1 walk-on, but it varies quite a bit from school to school and area to area.

    If the scholarship thing doesn't work out, college club tennis is getting REALLY big, and the level of play at the better schools is really high, but the time commitment and dedication isn't the same.
  4. Master Flow

    Master Flow New User

    Jun 19, 2008
    Hate saying it because they took 233 points from me and i have NO CLUE why:confused:. My actual rank is 214. Before they took my points away i was 146. wasn't higher because i didn't play in enough tournaments to get points (probally take the other points id get from the tournaments away anyways!):mad:. played 4 all together.
  5. kctennis1005

    kctennis1005 Guest

    is that in a section or national? if section, which one?
  6. TBanh12

    TBanh12 New User

    Jun 9, 2008
    Are you talking about full scholarships? I don't think you can get one unless you're a big time junior. With your sectional ranking, I'd say you could probably get a partial scholarship to D1 or D2. If you play in D3 or at a private school, don't expect to get any money.

    Unless you're trying to go pro, don't make tennis the reason you choose your college. A good friend of mine told me that. Remember, tennis is a lifelong sport!
    tennisfiles likes this.
  7. tenniko

    tenniko Semi-Pro

    Nov 20, 2006
    Irvine, CA/Seoul, Korea
    I went to UC Irvine (D-1), and played for the club. Couple of people I know who were ranked in Top 100 could have walked-on the school team (but they didn't and played for the club). They probably could have been playing for D-2.

    Well, I am about 4.5 (Southern Cal) and I pretty much got creamed by the couple of if you want tennis scholarship, pick your school wisely.
  8. Master Flow

    Master Flow New User

    Jun 19, 2008
    My ranking is sectional: Missouri Valley
    I dont plan going out of state because the tuition for college will be to high
    so i need the scholarships to lower the cost of college to see if i can expand my horizon a little.


    Jul 11, 2007
    I don't know why I keep pushing and cheering on the small MID W*ST conference(s) like MO Valley- BUT look at Creighton, Drake, SW MO ST, all great schools- all have tennis where you would be welcome as a clear day in tornado alley.
    And a snowy day having a beer and pizza and walking over and watching some basketball- It ain't a bad evening.

    We have a top kid here in Arizona going to Marquette.. another- a standout student, she's going to University of Chicago

    I'm all for a new MAXIUM- school first, and tennis if it fits- or even 50/50.

    I watched students who end up in dire straights because of the demands of (D1) tennis, and they wanted to study, make the grades/ The coaches wanted to win first... so who gets hurt in the end?
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2008
  10. allrightguy

    allrightguy Rookie

    Sep 26, 2007
    I'd just say start writing some emails and doign research. Visit a lot of schools and get your apps in early.

    Part of the reason I looked at smaller schools was I wanted to be able to play tennis. Like you, I haven't been playing as long (8 years) but I have worked hard and am trying to step my game up more this summer. D2 felt good to me; I got a great academic scholarship and some money for tennis. I can play my way into more too.
    I guess what I'm saying is just to start looking ASAP and keep an open mind, I looked at liek ten different schools before I found the one that felt right to me.
  11. socrates2007

    socrates2007 New User

    Aug 21, 2006
    being around a 4.5 probably won't get you a tennis scholarship. I was about a 4.5 when I was looking at schools, tennis scholarships weren't something that was discussed with coaches. It was typically more about my academic performance.
    You'd probably being playing around 4-5-6 on a decent D2 team (more than likely 5-6). I would find schools that you want to go to and contact the coaches at that schools and talk to them about playing there. Sometimes they can help you get some more academic scholarships if you tell them you want to play tennis there. (I doubt that this is very legal, but it happened at the school I went to and I know similar things happened at other schools, such as giving a tennis player a cross country scholarship even though the guy never ran in one race.) If you can impress the coaches during your first year more than likely they will be willing to reward you for it.

    Does the USTA still offer the service where they send your name and info out to colleges? I remember signing for something like that and I got responses from various schools (mostly D3, some D2) about playing tennis. It might be something to consider, if they still offer it.
  12. TennisDawg

    TennisDawg Semi-Pro

    Dec 3, 2007
    Sounds like you really love tennis. It might be a real challenge for you to walk-on with a college team. If by the time you're a junior in high school the college coaches should have seem or heard about you.
    Not to sound discouraging, but I would first get into a college that you like as your primary objective, secondly I would still focus on your love for tennis. You can still work and improve your game, take llessons, play good competition and set-up a tennis routine. Play at least one tournament a month, year round and measure your progress. Tournments in the Missouri Valley section are can be just as competive as college competition. You may find that in a few years your just as good or better than college players. Meanwhile, you have been attending college while still pursing an avocation, like tennis that you love.
  13. bluescreen

    bluescreen Hall of Fame

    May 18, 2006
    i play for a d1 college team, and to get a scholarship u have to be insanely good, either top 5 in the state or from another country. sadly, most recipients of tennis scholarships these days r from foreign countries. the only kid on my team that has a full ride and is from this country got to states finals his senior year and plays #1 for us. and btw, coaches dont care at all about academics. as long as u pass the college's base academic requirements they only focus on your tennis results.

    i seriously doubt u'll get any money for tennis, but u may be able to walk on or try out for the team.
  14. Aeropro master

    Aeropro master Professional

    May 6, 2007
    it also matters if you're a guy or a girl. Girls have more chances of getting scholarships in tennis because of the amount the NCAA gives them compared to guys tennis.
  15. north4t

    north4t Rookie

    Sep 3, 2007
    Where do you live in the Missouri valley.
  16. Master Flow

    Master Flow New User

    Jun 19, 2008
    Thanks, you all have been very insightful.
    and i thank you for your honest opinions.
  17. MGiaquinto64

    MGiaquinto64 New User

    Jun 28, 2008
  18. Dashbarr

    Dashbarr Rookie

    Oct 19, 2006
    I honestly think that that post should be stickied in this section of the board, because it seems as though a lot of people are going to be wanting to know that information.
  19. rosenstar

    rosenstar Professional

    Jul 24, 2006
    somebody at your level could probably play at small division I school/DII school. No state universities, They have such a large pool to draw from, the won't take someone at your level.

    Your best chance of getting a scholarship is to make the team first, then work your ass off for 2-3 years and make a good impression on the coach. Then maybe by your junior or senior year, they'll throw some money at you.

    Some advice/areas you can work on:
    -at this stage of your game, you're basic playing style has been decided. You know your strengths. make everything more consistant. At one point I was trying to play college, and I was good enough to play in the patriot league (lehigh, lafayette), but I chose VT (which I loved) where I have no chance of playing. One of my friends who was the same level as me picked a smaller school where he'll play tennis. The main change he made to his game is he cut out all the little errors. He hits every ball exactly the same as he used to, but he never misses.

    -learn to play smart. Research Warlaw Directionals. It's Basic singles strategy that just about EVERY college level player knows.

    -Learn to play good doubles. no explanation needed.

    -Get in contact with the coach. Make a good impression

    -get your former coach to write a letter of recommendation on your behalf. Thats big.

    -make a video. Just a video of you playing points. Don't cut it and splice it, and make sure you're playing someone at an even level or better. Include all the points you won or lost. This video should demonstrate that you know how to construct a point. Give the college coach the impression that when you play, you plan out the point 2 or 3 shots in advance.

    -play more tournaments. A change in ranking (unless extremely drastic) really isn't going to mean much to the coach someone at your level is dealing with. Play to get experience. I'd recommend play more Men's open tournaments instead of juniors. It's more like the type of play you'll see in college.

    -Finally, pick a school you actually like, don't just go there for tennis. Look at the players on the team. Are they there for school too or just tennis? If your trying to be an engineer (which was my situation) you're going to have very tough classes. What are the other player's majors? Are they taking real majors, or "blow-off" classes (meaning the only reason they're at the school is to play tennis).

    -Last thing, I promise. Are you sure you actually want to play college tennis? If you do thats fine, but realize the commitment. you won't have a normal college experience. you won't be able to party, almost all your friends will be tennis players, and tennis will be your social life. If you want that, then go for it. Otherwise, maybe a school with a competitive club team is the way to go.
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2008
  20. ttbrowne

    ttbrowne Hall of Fame

    May 29, 2008
    Great stuff rosenstar.

    One more thing. I attended the NCAA Championships in Tulsa this year and WOW! These guys are good. Really good.

    Take time to travel to see a D1 tourney. Then you'll have a solid understanding of where your game is. I guarantee.

    Forget watching the Pros. At a Championship you'll get a better understanding of where YOU fit in.
  21. Coach Carter

    Coach Carter Rookie

    Jan 3, 2006
    West Point, GA
    As a college tennis coach...I gotta say you need to do some research. You need to go watch matches for schools of all sizes...even D3. The reason may realize you have work to do still to make a team at any level. I am not saying it to be ugly, but I coach at a D3 and we play D1's every year and beat them badly. It's more about finding a school where you can get a great education and where the team is "like you". When I say that, I mean if you're aggressive then that's the kind of team you need to find. Would you want to play at a D1 where you get no scholarship and play 12 matches a year (losing 11 of them)...while not even traveling out of the state...where the players and coach don't even take it serious? Would you want to play at D3 where you get a nice academic or merit scholarship and play 28 matches a year...while traveling all over (including an 8 day spring break trip)...where all the players were highly ranked and are pushing to win a title? The tough decision is there to make. Are you more interested in your friends "thinking" you play somewhere big...when you may get a t-shirt and string some racquets for the "real players"...or do you really want to be a "difference maker" on a team? Look at rosters on the internet...research the players (jrs rankings)...see where you would probably be. If you haven't got some attention from a big school coach by the end of jr year, then it's all up hill. The other thing most kids or parents don't realize...a "fully funded" D1 men's team has 4.5 scholarships and a women's has D2 it's 4.5 and 6 respectively. That's not 4.5 new each year! Look at rosters and see how many foreign players are there. You'd also be surprised at how few of the teams are fully funded (have all their scholarships)...I'd say about 60% of D1's and far less than 50% of D2's have their scholarships...on the guys side of things. It's all about educating yourself and asking yourself how much you truly want to play college tennis. It can be a great experience...don't be a a leader and do something amazing!!!
  22. Tigerarp1

    Tigerarp1 Rookie

    Jul 15, 2004
    If you are wanting to play college tennis, we, John Brown University, have some spots left on our team. We offer partial scholarships for our players. I plan on filling these spots within the next 2 weeks.
    If interrested, email me at
  23. chico9166

    chico9166 Guest

    Master flow,

    Where are you from?

    WHSTENNIS Rookie

    Jun 24, 2008
    I can't wait till i go to college then because i am about 4-4.5 and i am going to be a freshman in about a month.
  25. tenniscrazed

    tenniscrazed Guest

    This is by far one of the best written posts on this subject. The only thing that I would like to add is the maturity process. Some athletes mature sooner than others and therefore as a D1 walkon / hitting partner, a late bloomer, as they say, would never have a chance to bloom. Whereas that same player at a D2 or D3 would have a chance to bloom.

    Playing at a D2 or D3 or even at a JC does not preclude you from playing Mens Opens, futures qualies or other experience producing events.

    Being realistic as to where you are today is probably one of the hardest things an athlete and parent can realize.

    College of the Desert is a perfect example of a JC that consistently produces high quality tennis players. Yet who wants to go there to grow up, mature and become a better D1 - D3 player in your last two or three years of eligibility. I certainly would, and would encourage anyone who is a late bloomer to do likewise.

    Again very well written.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 9, 2008
  26. Kaptain Karl

    Kaptain Karl Hall Of Fame

    Sep 17, 2004
    The High Country of Colorado
    Read this thread of serveitup911's. He actually DID what you are asking about ... and did it very methodically and well.

    (I, on the other hand, "fell into" a scholarship in an NAIA school. But that was over 33 years ago. Some of my friends still hate me for how I lucked-out.) But I didn't do it right. If you "count" on having my luck, you'll more likely be sorry.

    Coach Carter's post is also excellent ^^^. Read it. Then read it again.

    I got a scholarship to an NAIA school with a very creative Coach (who knew he couldn't help us much with strategy and tactics ... so he scheduled us for experience and hoped we learned through "the school of hard knocks.")

    We traveled all over a five state region ... and got our butts handed to us by (even) the B Teams of some good NCAA I, NCAA II and NAIA I schools. One of by buddies played for a rival school in our Conference ... didn't get any scholarship ... and they didn't travel much at all like we did. We had a blast and learned a LOT about competition and got to see and meet some cool schools and teams. And ... we whomped my friend's team when we met them in-Conference(!).

    Then I transferred to a NCCA III school (no sports scholarships) which actually had a much better team than my previous college. We won our Conference each of my last two years ... and each year the team voted NOT to go....! Academics was way more important to all of them than it was for me. That team traveled minimally and kicked butt in the Conference.

    Now I am a HS coach. Three years ago my #2 player showed enough promise that I thought he had a shot a scholarship to a lesser Div II or NAIA school. But he and his family wanted him close-by.... He's still playing for a local Div II school which is pretty good. Only the top 3 players get any scholarship, and he is barely hanging-on to a low Singles spot. But he's happy -- he's getting a very good education -- AND he's playing competitive tennis.

    What do you want out of college? What do you offer a college? What do you want out of college tennis? What do you offer your potential team?

    Have fun...!

    - KK
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2008

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