From prep school to D1 college hockey?

<p>So despite being clueless about sports we managed to get our hockey playing son into a Canadian prep school with a strong hockey program. He's a junior and playing varsity hockey in the Midwest Prep Hockey League and will play about 60 games this season, before that he played 16AA. He's a good all around player, top scorer on his team last year but more in the middle on this team. </p>

<p>What should I be thinking about and doing now to help him get into a d1 hockey program? What should I expect his school to be doing? He expects to play a year of juniors between high school and college but should we be contacting colleges now or wait?</p>

<p>Thanks for your help!</p>

<p>There’s a strange dichotomy in D1 hockey - on the one hand you read about kids committing early (junior year) and on the other hand, a year or 2 of Juniors is pretty standard procedure. 20 year old incoming freshmen are becoming the norm in D1 programs.</p>

<p>I think his prep school coach will be your best resource on the recruiting timetable.</p>

<p>Thanks Varska. Yes, hockey does seem different than others sports that way. The coach is a good idea though he is a bit unapproachable right now. I’ll wait for the right timing…</p>


<p>I agree with varska. Start with the prep school coach. However, you and your son should be reading up on how the college hockey recruiting process works…every sport is different or has it’s subtle nuances. </p>

<p>I’m sure there are websites out there that just deal with college hockey or college hockey recruiting. I would also read some of the bios for college players to see where they came from. Once you’ve got some background information, your son should start reaching out to these college coaches to find out how they recruit and where they recruit…nothing like hearing it from the horses mouth. From this information you can start to formulate a recruiting strategy. The rest is finding a coach that is looking for your son’s skills, and your son finding his academic and athletic fit. Good luck.</p>

<p>There is Canadian/Minnesota hockey and then there is the rest of the US for hockey. This is where the dichotomy comes in. It’s just a different beast in the “north country” and for a junior in a college prep hockey program that is a top player, they will have their pick of schools. For kids in other areas, not quite the same case. Average players in these northern leagues are getting hounded by coaches where as top players from other states come to try to make top college teams and don’t make it past the first day of tryouts.</p>

<p>Talk with the other parents on the team if you can’t talk to the coach right now. They will have some great ins and outs of the process.</p>

<p>Thanks for the feedback. When he comes home at Christmas we’ll start talking about colleges and getting in touch with coaches over the next 9 months. I don’t know that kids from this school are fending off recruiters that way, and don’t want to rely on it. Certainly a few kids each year are making it into D1 but lots stay in Canada and attend Canadian colleges (also not out of the question because he is a dual citizen) . I’m going to call the college counseling office soon and just see what they have to say. It’s tough to talk to the other parents. They all live within driving distance and do attend games but we live in California so won’t get to many!! I think/hope being persistent and making contacts can make the difference even when the skill level is similar. At least that’s how it worked with getting into prep school. Thanks for all the comments. I’ll be back for more as I learn the ropes of this!</p>

<p>@calhockeymom…best advice I heard from our son’s (ex NHLer, ex D1 player) hockey coach was D1 coaches find you, not the other way around. D3 is another story. You need to search them out.</p>