September 25, 2017

College Volleyball Recruiting and the Short Libero - Question #4986


My name is Ana and I'm a junior in high school and i play volleyball for my school. I am a libero but I've done lots of research and I've seen that the height limit for libero is 5'4 and I'm 5'3. 

believe I'm a really good player i strive for my best and volleyball is kind of the last sport I have. I want to continue to play at a D1 college. I've called scouts to come watch but i have competition this year on the team for 1 libero spot on varsity. 

I was wondering if you have any tips ore ideas on what i can do to better myself as a player and what i can do as a short player to have a chance on a college team.

Thank you, 


College coaches have their own preferences when it comes to the Libero or Defensive Specialist position and height.  The two common rationales which I hear are; 1) Coaches want a 'taller' libero because they have a longer wingspan and can cover more of the court, 2) Coaches want a shorter libero because of quicker foot speed and can cover more of the court.

Don't get caught up in any specifications; focus on your skill sets because tall or short, you still need to have elite level talent to play college volleyball.

As I have written about before, and with Inside College Volleyball, enlarge your collegiate view to include non NCAA Division I volleyball programs.  By only focusing on DI, you are ignoring 1300+ collegiate programs which could be a great fit for you!  

FYI for all the VolleyRecruits and VolleyFamilies out there:
  • It is very difficult to receive a DI scholarship as a freshman Libero; DI only has 12 scholarships to allocate.
  • Most Liberos/DS's will walk on to a DI program and then hopefully, maybe, perhaps, pray to the god of skinny punks (somebody tell me the movie reference), be awarded a scholarship when they are upperclassmen.
  • By considering DII/NAIA/DIII, you can 'package' your scholarships among numerous avenues and can sometimes achieve a "full" scholarship (it just won't be a full athletic scholarship).
  • Junior Colleges can be a great starting point, because of the opportunity to compete immediately and continue to develop your skill sets.

During the fall time frame, the majority of college coaches will not be traveling to watch recruits; they are in the heart of their collegiate season.  This time of the year, college coaches play possum or slow recruit, until their season is completed.

Liberos/DS's need to be excellent in serve receive; as in the best passer on the court.  Too many L/DS's think that playing good defense will get them noticed; college coaches want passing skills over defensive skills because of the importance of serve receive to team success.  Finding a good defender is not a big challenge, but finding a really good passer and defender is what college coaches focus upon.

If you want to get recruited to play college volleyball, and at the DI level, you must pass great and play very good defense; that is the order of how you must train to constantly improve.

The other key component is promoting yourself by reaching out to college coaches via email and providing current video of your skills.  There are approximately 1,348,308 L/DS's in the world playing high school age volleyball and they all want to go to the same university as you.  
All jest aside, the L/DS position is the most competitive spot when it comes to college volleyball recruiting; this is the result of so many athletes playing this position or trying to transition into the position for college volleyball recruiting.

Improve, promote and don't focus on definitions.

Good luck!


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