advice from people who play or coach women's college soccer...

<p>i'm a sophomore in high school and i'm interested in playing college soccer. i'm not looking for schools like UNC or UVA where it's a pretty huge deal...i'm just looking for a college that's relatively good in academics and has a soccer team. </p>

<p>you see, this year i came to the realization that i can't live without soccer. i honestly can't see myself...at least in the near future...without it. i love everything about the game with a burning passion...but i've never been one to take it seriously until now. it was just something i did for fun. i truly regret that now because it's a little too late to make something out of myself. but i wanna keep playing for as long as i can, in whatever team that'll accept me. </p>

<p>so my questions for you all is:</p>

<ol>
<li><p>do you think i'll have a chance in getting accepted to a team even though i've only played in a rec league all my life? (i will be trying out for my high school team in the spring. it's pretty competitive at my school, so chances are slim...but you never know...)</p></li>
<li><p>what's the college life like when you're playing on a team? is it hard balancing your school work? do you miss classes because of away games? or are the games like on the weekends or something? i'm really curious on how it works because academics is important to me. </p></li>
<li><p>what colleges would you recommend for me to go to? i'd also prefer to be in the east coast...</p></li>
</ol>

<p>that's all...for now.
any other advice would be great as well!</p>

<p>Hi Soccerlover, I was both a player and coach most of my life so I hope I can be of some help here. The good news for you is many colleges not only have a varsity sports program but they also have club programs as well. The benefit of playing at the club level is you still are part of a good competitive program, you travel and play against other colleges but it is not to the same commitment level as a varsity program. I have 2 kids in college now, one plays D1 golf the other NAIA D1 basketball and believe me, it is VERY VERY time consuming for both of them. The golfer misses a lot of school, basketball is not as bad. Soccer games are often on weekends for varsity programs but they are also during the week as well so you will have missed school time. I cannot speak for the club level games but my guess would be weekends. What you ought to do is look at the schools you are interested in and see what they offer in terms of club level athletics. By all means if you want to try for the varsity level, do so, but I get the sense from your post that a club level program might be more up your alley. When I was coaching girls high school soccer I had some incredibly talented players who could have played college soccer at the time but they were all so burned out they did not want to. The one player that did was not a starter for me, she probably would not have even been on the varsity high school team, but she was such a wonderful kid we all wanted her a part of the program. Well she was the ONLY one to play soccer in college. She played all four years for a small private schools club team and had a blast.</p>

<p>Why is it too late to make something out of soccer? You're only a sophomore. Try out for the team and see what happens. Or improve in your rec league if you can. But it is supposed to be "for fun". if it's not fun anymore stop playing, and do things you like better. if you're good enough you might be able to look at Division 3 for college. If not the club thing sounds like it could be good.</p>

<p>My D plays on a division III team, and is so glad she decided to pursue this in college. She's at a college that she chose for its academic excellence, but the team has been a great way to meet people and keep playing the sport she loves. So I think you should definitely keep soccer in mind as you begin to look at colleges. What you do in high school and rec vs. club can make a big difference in where you can play, but there's probably a place for you if you're committed,even if you only play rec. It's just really important to find an academic fit, and there are tons of smaller colleges that might offer both fit and soccer for you. </p>

<p>One thing to consider, if you're concerned about travel, is to choose a school in a conference that would not require lots of long-distance travel to play games. My D had some options to play in more prestigious, geographically-widespread conferences, and more local ones, so she factored that in. Games are twice a week during the season in most conferences, so yes, it can be pretty busy. But travel time makes a big difference. Good luck with this!</p>