Anyone's child ever got a US sports scholarship?

(17 Posts)
Secretservice Tue 25-Oct-16 22:09:40

DS 15 and in Year 11, can't seem to get his head around any future that does not include football. He's pretty good, plays for district, has had few trials, played for a non-attached academy - but has never caught the eye of an passing elite scout.
Anyway he's discovered there are companies that can help you find US uni scholarships - for a price!. Does anyone have any advice or experience of such companies?

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originalmavis Tue 25-Oct-16 22:13:07

Dumb question but isn't footie more of a female sport in the US?

A niece got a sport scholarship (she's American) and it was just a few hundred dollars a term.

Secretservice Tue 25-Oct-16 22:24:35

Women's soccer is definitely bigger over there than here, but still not as big as the men's game Mavis.
I suspect there is a wide range of scholarships, I suppose it will be a good indication of how good he is!

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quietlycrazy Wed 26-Oct-16 07:30:53

You could try contacting the US embassy. Back in the stone age day, when I was applying to the US from the UK, they had a section at the embassy that helped me figure out what I needed to do. Even if it no longer exists, they might know where you could go to get advice. I think scholarships are only given out for Division One schools (US unis are divided into divisions one, two and three for sports, depending on the size of their sports programme). That would limit him to the bigger universities, with a few exceptions (Brown, I think, is division 1, but impossible to get into; Furman is also division 1). Being a strong player might increase his odds of getting into some top ranked unis that are not division 1, but I don't think it would help on the financial side.

bigTillyMint Wed 26-Oct-16 07:43:48

I don't know where you live, but DS (Y11) has joined an academy where most of the boys have been released from or are of that "almost" signed for professional teams level. At sixth-form level, they offer full-time academy for boys doing A'levels/Btecs/apprenticeships who want to combine study with serious football. They support them with finding American football scholarships too.
We know a boy in Y13 who is very bright and has apparently got a scholarship to one of the most American prestigious universities.

So it seems it can be done. But I think it depends on where you are studying/training?

ajandjjmum Wed 26-Oct-16 07:52:25

A friend of ours is on a tennis scholarship in the US. Her parents used a company based in the UK to research the best uni for her, and they came up with a few options.

Secretservice Wed 26-Oct-16 11:04:44

Thank you
I know theoretically it's possible, just trying to figure out if it's probable for DS, or whether the matchmaking fees are really just a con.

I think there are a couple of sixth-form attached academies but not an easy day commute, Tillymint. He also says they don't offer much by way of progression post-A-level

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Ta1kinpeece Sun 30-Oct-16 18:56:17

US college scholarships are unlikely to include soccer as its not a big US TV sport

Dustylaw Sun 30-Oct-16 20:27:32

Not so at all.

Ta1kinpeece Sun 30-Oct-16 21:10:11

That is a UK link.
Find me a USA one about soccer scholarships .....

Needmoresleep Mon 31-Oct-16 07:44:04

Are you sure that American colleges are only interested in one or two sports?

DD has known quite a lot of kids who have used sport to get to America, though most of these have been aiming for very competitive Ivies/Stanford etc, where good sport (and this is probably a level like National trials) gets you the place though rarely the money. Sports have included hockey, rugby, rowing and swimming though the range will be much wider. It would certainly include women's soccer, and indeed I think one of my son's contemporaries was accepted with boys football. Those Universities demand high academic standards on top.

However talking to other parents at matches there is a wider range of less prestigious American colleges that offer substantial scholarships for good sports, including girls football, field hockey, ice hockey and swimming (and presumably lots and lots more.) But you do need to be good, and my guess is that for boys football, which is not a major US sport, there will be an awful lot of boys from outside the US who might be better able to compete for a limited number of places.

My observation is that a lot is done via informal links with coaches. And that the best way to get to the states would be to try to find a sixth form which has an established track record of sending kids onto the states. Private schools like Millfield will offer six form sports scholarships to really good sports people, and from there there is a pretty well-trodden route across the pond. I don't know which schools really excel in boys football, though a look through the ISFA website would tell you. For Girls I would be looking at somewhere like Kings Taunton.

But you need to be good and your son might not be at the right level.

BigGreenOlives Mon 31-Oct-16 07:53:37

What does he hope to achieve by going to a US college? If he hasn't been selected by a Premiership team for their youth academy I suspect he's not that good (sorry to be brutal but have known boys to be selected) and why would a US college want him? What level does he play at now? First team at school? County level? Regional level?

BertrandRussell Mon 31-Oct-16 07:57:52

A friend of dd's got one- - and then lost it because his A levels weren't good enough. That was a real shock to his system...............

garlicandsapphire Mon 31-Oct-16 08:02:10

A friend's son is on a soccer scholarship in the US now and loving it. There were 3 places who offered him one but it was dependent on what money was included. There are a lot of scholarships for soccer. I think they researched and applied direct without an agency. I will ask her.

He knows he probably won't continue to play professionally but he wanted the opportunity to play semi professionally. The tough bit is that he can only come home once a year because of the cost so I think it's hard on his mum. But they Skype and FaceTime all the time.

I went to an American university for my degree (not a sports scholarship!). It was a great experience.

HereIAm20 Mon 31-Oct-16 18:59:38

Please don't pay anyone to find a scholarship for you!

greatpumpkin Mon 31-Oct-16 19:17:22

Whilst there are definitely scholarships available for men's soccer, they are not likely to be for a lot of money because the soccer programme isn't going to be that lucrative for the university.

So if your son were to get a scholarship, it would still cost you a lot more than if he attended university in the UK. But he would get a chance to play the collegiate game and then be eligible for the MLS draft. If you can afford the tuition, he doesn't need a scholarship to attend the university and play for their soccer team.

So I wouldn't pay a consultant a fee to help you find a scholarship, but if he's keen to keep playing competitively, if you google you can find guidance on how to approach coaches. Athletic skill can help you get accepted even if you don't get financial help.

Bombaybunty Mon 31-Oct-16 19:21:21

My friend's son have been through the US university system on rugby scholarships.
Think their school helped them with the paperwork.

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