Hello, my daughter is going into the ninth grade and she loves volleyball. She wants to play on the collegiate level. Does she have a good chance on playing with taller girls as well as playing on a D1 or D2 level with her height?
She is 5'5 right now, and has a 9'2 approach and 8'3 block. My daughter played all around in the last club season. Her speciality is OH/DS but she says she is open to any position that will get her a scholarship. She is also a powerhitter. She continues to play club ball in the DFW area because she loves the game and want to get to the next level after high school.
Thank you in advance for your response.
With your daughter's height and current jumping ability, NCAA Division I will not be a realistic possibility. Even if she grows to 5'7"+, her approach touch would need to go over 9'6"+ - DI volleyball is extremely height driven for attackers.
If your daughter has the passion to be an attacker at the collegiate level, the categories outside of NCAA Division provide the best opportunity for a roster spot and scholarship.
The key with scholarships outside of DI, is to remember that they are packaged scholarships which are inclusive of athletics, academics, merit and need based avenues. The packaging of these avenues allows many non DI athletes to actually receive a full scholarship, but it does not come exclusively from athletics. Not having the scholarship fully funded by athletics, can be a safety net because your financial future is not subject to the whims of a coach or the cruelness of the volleyball gods.
You mentioned NCAA Division II, and be aware of NCAA Division III, NAIA and Junior College categories. NCSA - Next College Student Athlete has a great free recruiting profile, which includes the definitions and protocols for each of the above categories!
Being a "shorter" outside hitter, means that passing and ball control are keenly important. A college coach can accept a smaller attacker, provided they are one of the best passers on the team. Many coaches will recruit smaller attackers, knowing that they can transition this player to a back row athlete, should the need arise.
With your baby girl being in 9th grade, she has more time on the recruiting clock than a 6'2" OH. This is a positive because it allows her to develop skill sets before becoming actively engaged in the recruiting process and needing to interact/evaluate collegiate programs!
Stay focused on developing her all around game and keeping the game fun!