My daughter has now completed her 17’s club season, and is winding down her Jr. year in H.S. She is a Libero, and we know that scholarship opportunities for defensive players are few and far between. We have been active in promoting her to colleges for the past year. We have received some interest, and currently have an offer on the table to come play at a Division 1 school, as a walk on with the opportunity to earn a scholarship. We know that July 1st begins the signing period. We have made a visit to the school that has made this offer, and she / we are very interested. We believe that most D1 programs are winding down they’re recruiting for the 2012 class, and if we haven’t heard from a school by now, we’re probably not in their plans. From this point forward (June 2nd) we feel that any offers to come our way will likely be D2 or NAIA programs. While certainly a good fit could be found at one of these Schools, It has been our daughters desire to play NCAA D1 volleyball.
So here’s our question: We have read that committing early is not in our best interest. However, we’re trying to figure out why. We feel that it’s likely that the coach has a few Libero’s on his radar, and although we believe we are at the top of his list, we have decided that we don’t want to let this opportunity slip away. by giving a verbal now, our daughter would secure her spot with this program and stop the coaching staff from looking further. We can’t really figure out what we would stand to gain by waiting another few weeks or longer. Also, we know that a verbal commitment is not totally binding and if a full scholarship offer were to come along, we could still look at it. Should she go ahead and verbally commit now?
Thanks for your advice. G.N.
You have illustrated very logical points and with regards to Liberos, it can be tough to gain a late scholarship, but on the other hand, these Libero scholarships tend to be the last offered and can become 'available' late.
By the way, July 1st is the opening of the telephone contact period for rising seniors (once a week calls by coaches). The signing period is in the fall and spring of a player's senior year. Lots of terms/dates to keep straight....
Given the information you have provided, I have one question for you and one question for your daughter:
PSA - Does she like the school outside of Volleyball (academics, campus, location, size etc), and is she comfortable with what she is hearing/reading/seeing with regards to the Volleyball team?
You - Can you financially afford to send her to this DI school which has offered her a roster spot and continue to afford to send her to this school if she never receives scholarship?
If both answers are Yes - Then accept the roster spot and enjoy a great senior season of high school and club. If there is a NO answer, then I suggest you continue to keep active in the recruiting process
Couple of notes - Scholarships will open up for seniors because the completed college season always makes this happen; Las Vegas was amazing this year in terms of available scholarships. But, again, the Libero's tend to be lower on the list than OHs/MBs/Setters.
Even though you have just provided a verbal, and you could still break the verbal and take a scholarship elsewhere, Volleyball is still a sport which honors verbals (even though the rise of the One and Done/None and Done is very frustrating). If a school has offered a roster spot to your PSA, then they have picked her over other players which could have also filled a specific role which your PSA has been selected for.
Hope my answer helps!