July 2, 2015

Volleyball Goals - College or High School?


I am currently an incoming freshman, playing outside hitter. This past season I played on a competitive 16-2s team as outside. However, ever since I have been playing volleyball I have been told I am a great setter. I love setting, and want to play at a college level, but I'm unsure if it is too late for me to be able to switch positions without having to play on the Freshman team for school ball.

I am 5'7", so I am not necessarily tall either. I have a pretty good vertical, and train to increase it, giving that I do hit outside for my club team.

My question is, should I risk switching to setting to be able to play at a college level, but possibly have to play on the freshman team, or risk not making it to play in college as an outside to be able to make JV?


What is your goal? 

Your goal is to play college volleyball, so focus on that end result and the steps that are necessary to achieve that goal.  One of the steps to play as a setter in college, is to start the learning process of being a setter in high school.  And if that means having to play on the Freshman team to begin with, so you can refine your skill sets and work on your team leadership, then you have to do it.  Don't get caught up in the high school ego of what team you make, especially as an incoming freshman player.

Again, what is more important?  

You to achieve a collegiate playing position (and as a 5'7" player, setter is one of your better routes to this goal), or make a high school JV team which will be nothing but a distant memory when you are setting in college?

Use this summer to attend a few setting camps or all skills camps where you can get some quality repetitions. Use the summer base of setting practice to move into you high school experience ready to set for what ever team they put you on and ready to run a team.  This is a big difference between setting and being a setter.

Good luck!

Coach Sonnichsen

June 29, 2015

College Volleyball Recruiting while Injured

Hey Coach,

I am a class of 2016 high level club and high school player.  I have  won numerous awards on the high school level and am a lower D1/ competitive D2 recruit.   However I have recently had ACL surgery and will be out until January 2017.  I read a reply you had from another ACL injury question which stated to lay low from the recruiting out reach and focus on rehab.  I understand that from a new out reach perspective.  My question is how do I manage recruiting with schools that I have been in communication with and have shown some interest in me prior to my injury?  Also, I have some D3 and JUCOs that know about my injury and are recruiting me much more aggressively since my injury.  How should I view an offer from a JUCO or a D3 right now while in rehab?  Is it best to still hold out from committing at a lower level school until after rehab and wait until I get back to the court for club next year?  Or is it best to maybe consider JUCO now? This has all been nightmarish for me considering I was expecting to receive a few verbal offers this summer!

Any direction would be very helpful!

Injured knee and distraught recruit

Apologies for the later reply and sorry you are having the manage an ACL injury, especially with this timing.  Most ACL injuries take 12-14 months for full recovery (physical happens before mental….I know after my Achilles surgery and rehab).

I would focus on JC's at this juncture, just because you won't be back to full speed in 2016 to have an effective recruiting opportunity and I would be wary of a 4 year scholarship'ing you, because they could just as easily cut you if they don't think you have progressed well enough.

Use the rest of the summer and fall, to start evaluating JC's with the thought process being you will attend/play for 1 year, then move to a 4 year school the next year.  If the knee needs a bit more time, then you stay for a 2nd season.

The silver lining for this situation is that you will receive a sizable, if not full, scholarship offer, you will be able to focus on your recovery without the pressure of recruiting, and you can get quality volleyball experience while knocking out a full year of college credits while at the JC, and you will be more mature to better manage/understand the 4 year opportunities after a year at JC.

Stinks now and the timing really is frustrating, but there are many positives that can come of this currently tough situation.

Hang in there and do your rehab!