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Anyone with a collegiate athlete? I need advice!

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  • Anyone with a collegiate athlete? I need advice!

    So I'm doing my best to help a young man find a school in the southeast to play baseball. After high school, he had a couple offers from some less desirable schools and instead of taking one, he enrolled at a division one school and tried out for their team. Bad news, he missed the team by two people! He's a great athlete and loves baseball, it kinda got him down and out and didn't try out again last year. Over Christmas break we were talking and he was needing some advice and baseball got brought up again. I told him he needed to play, this is this kids dream! So he dropped out and started working out again and we're trying to find somewhere for him to play.

    Here's the deal, he's completed three semesters at a d1 school, so from my understanding he has two years of eligibility gone in d1. Maybe d2, but I'm not sure on that. I've called and emailed at least twenty coaches trying to find out his options. Of course I've only talked to a handful due to it being in the middle of their season. Some say they can come watch him practice, some say they can't. ( don't know if they're just trying to blow me off) Some say he's eligible, some say not. One coach suggested d3 or a NAIA school. Said they are much more lenient on transfers. Problem there is, most schools of that size are private schools and tuition is very expensive.

    We finally just went and watched a low level d1 game this past weekend. It was only an hour away. This kid was as good as 80% of the players on the team. The d1 school he tried out on was a high level school. He can put in 120+ pitches in the high 80's and can field and hit the ball. Like I said, just a good all around athlete. We stayed afterwards and the coaches were gracious enough to speak with us, so we're gonna pursue that as much as possible, but in the mean time, I would appreciate any and all suggestions that will help this young fella play ball!

  • #2
    Southeast is LOADED with talented ball players. Many coaches will check height and weight on guys and toss out ones without a "D1 frame"
    It's not high school any more. You're a player or a pitcher. Not likely a guy who belongs on the bump will ever get to swing a bat. Just the way it is.
    Coach's advice is sound, if he loves the game, and has talent, look where he fits and work for a spot. Find a showcase team for the summer? Stay the course and get a secondary education.
    Last edited by neil.anderson63; 03-22-2017, 11:24 AM.
    Screws fall out all the time, the world is an imperfect place.

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    • #3
      1,000% would base his school choice off of the education and not sports.
      Aric


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      • #4
        Paco, I'm not sure what your relationship is to the young man but from having two good friend play Baseball in College (1 @ SEC and 1 @CUSA School), its a cut throat sport. In the south especially, there is so much talent and the odds of players making it far is slim to none. (I forgot the percentages). I can promise you one thing, that if he is that good, the coaches would have found him in High School or his High School coach could have maybe helped out.

        My sister-in-laws boyfriend is a relief pitcher at Ole Miss and while he is a decent pitcher, I doubt that he has much of a pro career ahead of him. Like I have said many times to him, I hope that he uses his baseball scholarship to get a free education in which he can do things once he is out of school.

        A few of my buddies play baseball at a JUCO school for two years and then found a home for 2 more years at a D2/D3 school. They got to play baseball and get a free education and to them, that was what they really wanted to do. Yeah, its not the big schools but they loved baseball and saw it as a means to an end.

        I would tell him to play at any place where he can regardless of the division because that is his best bet. To be honest, the fact that he had offers to less desirable schools and turned it down sounds a bit off. I get that its not your top choice, but you have to go where you have offers if you want to play. Parents always think there kids are better than what they are. I was a decent athlete growing up, but I knew I never had a Pro Career in it so I focused on getting a education.

        Not trying to sounds harsh or anything, but just hearing about the the sport from my friends playing, its harsh. Its dominated by young players and each year they reload. I wish the kid the best of luck, but dropping out of school really doesn't help him much. An education is the most powerful thing in todays society, tell him to get in school and pick a major that will guarantee him a quality job out of college because that will stick with him for the rest of his life.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by neil.anderson63 View Post
          It's not high school any more. You're a player or a pitcher. Not likely a guy who belongs on the bump will ever get to swing a bat. Just the way it is.
          That is mostly true, but not always true. Take for example Kentucky's A.J. Reed. He won the Golden Spikes award in 2014. My son and I saw him pitch at the SEC Baseball tournament in Bham. In fact, he was his own DH in that game and batted 4th in the lineup.

          Reed was 12-2 with a 2.09 ERA in 112 innings for Kentucky. He is the first Golden Spikes Award winner in the Wildcats' history and was a consensus first-team All-American in 2014. At the plate he led the nation with 23 home runs.

          He was a second-round pick of the Houston Astros in Major League Baseball's first-year player draft in June.


          I told my son that a guy who can hit like that won't be a pitcher...he'll be an everyday player.

          Good luck to the player mentioned in this thread.

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          • #6
            My kids are not college athletes, but some of my friends were and now some of my friend's kids are, so I've seen many cases of both good and bad. I've seen some of them leverage their sport into getting a great education and great college experience (e.g., one of my son's friends is now swimming at Stanford on a full scholarship). I've also seen some of them focus on a false hope, let their sport interfere with their studies until they flunked out, or let their sport push them to 3rd tier academic schools where they graduated with unemployable degrees (hey, I now have a bachelors degree in Women's Studies from Chico State and I'd now like to come work for your company... Any openings? No?).

            So my advice: be careful. While it sounds great to tell a young man or woman to pursue their dreams, sometimes their dreams are immature and somebody needs to kick them in the a$$ and make them think about their future. Pulling out of school to focus on getting better at a sport because the kid has to get a scholarship to afford a good education is one thing. Letting sports interfere with their education is very dangerous, but using sports to further their education can be very rewarding. I'm not there and don't know the young man you're talking about, but at first glance this appears to be a case where he's letting his love of the sport interfere with growing up and starting a life. I could be wrong - maybe his intent is to take the time off in order to get good enough to get a scholarship that helps him afford an education.

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            • #7
              First thing is he wants to play ball. He had offers to (name any school), he should have taken them. Get in contact with those schools and see if he can get in on that deal now. Playing anywhere at school is better than dropping out of school.

              I assume he played travel ball and went to camps. Networking with those people will be the best source of "what do I do now" to get back to playing ball.

              The harsh truth is, pro ball probably isn't going to happen. Education is now the most important thing. A 4 yr degree from any school is great. Honestly, a 4 yr degree will get you a job, and you need a masters for a lot of careers or to get ahead.
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              • #8
                Well, he had a bad family situation at graduation which led him to where he went. Also, small rural schools around here don't get much attention from college coaches, especially when the high school coach doesn't care. The kid is hard working, so actually getting to play sports will help him more than hurt him. He'll have fun while at school!

                Biggest question was really dos and don'ts of transferring or if anyone has been in this situation before. Looking like it'll be hard enough getting a try out, definitely don't want to go through that trouble if he won't be eligible to play!

                This is a hard row to hoe!

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                • #9
                  He really needs to think long term. Education should be the #1 priority while attending college, and dropping out was a terrible choice too. My buddy walked on to our football team, and quit after a few games because he had absolutely no time to do anything but play football.

                  Realistically, get the kid back and school and dont worry about baseball. Have him play intramural baseball.
                  Aric


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                  • #10
                    Yip, get back in school, wherever and earn at a minimum a secondary degree. JUCO is perfect for getting all the core requirements completed. Saves big $$$
                    I love baseball and I still play in a wooden bat league - I'm 53. Quite a few of the guys I play with are 1/2 my age. They also love the game and are very competitive. Knuckle up, get the paper. There are opportunities to play competitive baseball for as long as he wants.
                    Screws fall out all the time, the world is an imperfect place.

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                    • #11
                      I agree with Aric, education / school first. My daughter signed her letter of Intent to play D1 soccer in February. My wife and I and her coach told her to pick the school not the soccer team. She had several offers and chose the school based on the major she wants to pursue not the athletics.

                      Also, if the kid has not played college sports he should have 4 years of eligibility.

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                      • #12
                        School first. Get him back in school. If he wasn't an all star in high school then the chances of him having a "career" in baseball is pretty small. He need to find a career and play ball were he can.

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                        • #13
                          Get him back in school...... if he has a bad situation at home this is probably his only chance of breaking the cycle.....

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                          • #14
                            For him to be away from both school and baseball hurts him in both places. I agree that he should first be in school. Eligibility to play is his at this point, but if he waits much longer it will go away in NCAA play. His education is and should be first priority, with baseball as a secondary objective. A degree from a four-year institution will find him decent employment in today's world. Maybe he could get a sports degree and coach?
                            Bob

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                            • #15
                              It doesn't sound like baseball will pay the bills in his case, I'd get him back in school
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