Creating Your Target List of Schools

Ahh, the target list of schools.  At PAVC, we hold our athletes to the standard of making this list longer than the list of reasons why your room still isn't clean.  So, about 50 or more schools is ideal if you are just getting started as a freshman or a sophomore.  If you are a junior or senior, this list can be narrowed down a little quicker, so we can aim for about 20 based on your needs.  Your target list is like your North Star when it comes to recruiting, so be sure to really dig deep and ask yourself the hard questions...questions like "How's the football team?" TOTALLY KIDDING!
In this blog, we will take a deep dive into creating your ever-evolving target list to fit your needs as you navigate through your unique recruiting process.

How to Create The List:
Let's start from the top: if your email address is still, go ahead and make a new, professional email as we pursue young adulthood... preferably a gmail account so we can utilize all of the Google Doc features.  Create a Google Spreadsheet that you can share with your parents, your coach, and/or your Recruiting Director. 

Questions to Consider:
1. LOCATION - How far are you willing to be from home?  Can you handle the snow? Is being close to the beach a MUST?
2. LEVEL OF PLAY - DI, DII, DIII, NAIA, NJCAA, etc.  Be realistic about the work you are willing to put in based on your desired level.  Talk to your coaches if you need help with projections!
3. ACADEMICS - Does this school have your intended area of study?  What are the class sizes? Are they highly selective? What does my SAT/ACT score need to be to put me in a good standing for acceptance?
4. FINANCES - Scholarships are available at most schools, but at the DIII level, scholarships are academic only - same with Ivy Leagues.  All other programs will have athletic scholarships available, but the amount depends on the school and the level.  We will get more into that at another blog!

The biggest question to ask yourself: If I didn't play volleyball at this school, would this be where I would want to be anyway?

Details to Include on Your List:
Now, this might vary a bit based on your level of organization and information you want included.  Here are some examples of what we would suggest makes it on your list for each school:

  • School name
  • Location
  • Divison/Conference
  • Coach name
  • Coach contact info
  • Pros of the school
  • Cons of the school
  • Contact dates

It could also be helpful to color coordinate based on schools in contact with, schools waiting to contact, schools who expressed that they are moving in a different direction.  

Your Top Five
We suggest you have a "Top 5" schools at all times...keep them at the top of your list.  These five schools are the schools that you would like to most attend based on your needs.  If one of these schools ends up letting you know that they are not recruiting your position or you do not fit their needs, drop them from your 5 and pull up another school. 

Check out these links for finding all schools in each organization.

We hope this information has been helpful in creating your list!  Remember, there are schools that could have EVERYTHING you want in a school that you simply have not yet discovered.  All you have to do is put in the work to research and find them.  Be sure to reach out to your Recruiting Coordinator or Coach for more guidance!