Most college recruiting stories you hear on ESPN involve high-profile football coaches landing helicopters next to football fields to recruit 5-star athletes. Recruiting athletes can be just as competitive at the Division III level, but this sort of spectacle is not the norm. Often times Division III coaches are working harder and smarter than their Division I and II counterparts simply because we do not have the same athletic-based scholarships to offer. In fact, as a Division III basketball coach here at Catholic University, I can tell you first-hand that we have built our program with student-athletes who had Division I and II scholarship opportunities, but chose Catholic because the Division III model simply fit their aspirations and goals better.
Show Your Interest
If you have decided that Division III is the route for you, simply reach out to a coach to express your interest and fill out our recruitment questionnaire. If you have film or stats, be sure to include those in your first correspondence. Also, don’t forget to include your grades!
Showcase Your Talents
One of the best developments in recent years for Division III recruiting are Elite Camps and Prospect Days. These camps and events allow a student to visit campus while also being able to showcase their talents in front of the entire coaching staff. These events have become extremely valuable assets to coaches at the DIII level. Most of these camps occur in the spring and summer, so be sure to check out CUACardinals.com for updates regarding these camps.
Know Your Scholarship Opportunities
The most common misconception about Division III athletics is that we are known as the “No-Scholarship Division.” Of course, we are the one division of intercollegiate athletics that does not offer athletic-based scholarships, but that doesn’t mean Division III institutions are unaffordable. There are numerous merit and need-based scholarships, grants and financial aid available to all students here at Catholic University. In some cases, students can get tuition down to the level of what it would cost to attend a local state university.
Understand What DIII Athletics Means For You
The beauty of Division III recruiting is the mutual interest that is exemplified when a student falls in love with a university first and foremost, and conversely the coaching staff is impressed with that same student’s talents. I believe this is why the transfer rate for Division III student-athletes is astronomically lower than the Division I and Division II level. Our student-athletes truly want to be students at our institution.
Tom Berry is the Campus Visit Coordinator for the Office of Undergraduate Admission and a 2014 graduate from the School of Arts and Sciences. Additionally, Tom is an assistant men’s basketball coach for the University.