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Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

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Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by dfwsoccerdad on 3/12/2017, 10:12 am

I understand that you have a better chance of playing in college if you play USDA. My question is playing on the worst Academy team in your city versus playing on a top non-Academy team. In Dallas and Houston, there are great discrepancies in the teams (depending on the age group) and I wonder if it is worth it to stay on a poor Academy team rather than join a top non-Academy team.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by soccer4fun on 3/12/2017, 11:36 am

imo there is no question it is only about the team and playing time. In order to be seen and develop your son needs to play. Make sure the team is going to showcases, the coach is one who will truly help your son and the club has a college program and then go for it.
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by go99 on 3/12/2017, 5:23 pm

you are already off. You are looking at the WORST team vs the BEST team. No college is looking for teams they are looking for players. Players looking to ride the coat tails of tops teams don't usually do much. Find the highest level that the kid can showcase their talents.
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by dfwsoccerdad on 3/12/2017, 7:29 pm

I understand that coaches are looking for players rather than teams. Academy offers some great exposure (European tournaments, Showcases, playing against all the future pros on FCD). One of the local Academy teams eeks out a few victories here and there against some of the lesser teams and generally gets spanked against the better teams. I am just not sure if either of those cases gets many players noticed.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by Sprint on 3/13/2017, 10:16 am

dfwsoccerdad wrote:I understand that coaches are looking for players rather than teams. Academy offers some great exposure (European tournaments, Showcases, playing against all the future pros on FCD). One of the local Academy teams eeks out a few victories here and there against some of the lesser teams and generally gets spanked against the better teams. I am just not sure if either of those cases gets many players noticed.


DA at any level should get your player more exposure than non-DA. The very best non-DA teams do get exposure by playing in the showcase tournaments, and the premiere league and national league are big events and if your team gets to the National Championship in Frisco, clearly there will be scouts watching them. However, in order to do that, your team has to be very, very good.

Even if you are on the worst DA team in the country, that team will still be playing in the DA showcase in Florida in early December of your kids 10th or 11th grade year in HS with college coaches all over the place. Talked to parents of kids on DA teams that are near the bottom of the DA table and they still had over 50 college coaches at each game. If your kid is college level, he would leave that weekend with contacts and a good idea of where they will slot into college.

There are a number of routes to a kid playing in college, but DA seems to be the best for getting multiple looks in the current system.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by davito on 3/13/2017, 11:13 am

You answered it yourself. DA gives great exposure. As Sprint said good exposure can come with Premier/National League. But if you are primarily deciding where to play based on exposure you are making a bad decision.

If you are on the "worst" DA team in NTX you are still probably on a DA team that is better than plenty of other DA teams around the country.

People tend to pay more attention to the good teams. It is human nature. However, good scouts know that good players are scattered around. They are not all on the best team. They look at the ability of the individual not the team.
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by TexasFutbol on 3/15/2017, 2:41 pm

College bound Soccer, Basketball and Baseball players should be focusing on playing in regional and national "showcases". There is a good documentary on Netfix about the basketball path which really drills down into the "showcase" aspect of getting to the NCAA. Unlike Basketball and Baseball, in Soccer the DA teams seem to control the path which is very unfortunate as there are less soccer scholarships than the other two sports. Also rules preventing players from playing in High School and much more travel involved than the other sports in getting to the NCAA.. No Bueno...Mucho Dinero$$$$

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by earbucket on 9/15/2017, 2:03 pm

Map of States with percentage of HS players in D1

Texas comes in at 0.9%.  Texas has 38,491 boys participating in HS soccer according to 2016-2017 report.  http://www.nfhs.org/ParticipationStatistics/PDF/2016-17_Participation_Survey_Results.pdf


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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by PremierLeagueFan on 9/15/2017, 3:12 pm

dfwsoccerdad wrote:I understand that you have a better chance of playing in college if you play USDA. My question is playing on the worst Academy team in your city versus playing on a top non-Academy team. In Dallas and Houston, there are great discrepancies in the teams (depending on the age group) and I wonder if it is worth it to stay on a poor Academy team rather than join a top non-Academy team.

Get good grades make a highlight reel and self promote your player. Go to a private religious school that has deep pockets and 4 year scholarships.

If you aren't at an MLS academy forget the pro leagues or make a top 10 D1 college team and become a standout which might get you a soccer opportunity.

The best scenario is to get a free ride from a rich school and study something that will pay your BB well or qualify them for grad School.

My BB is shooting for a 4 year free ride and a degree in mechanical engineering and so far we are right on track so long as he follows the self-promotion and religious school or rich school route.

If he wants a pro opportunity he would have to play for FCD Academy if he wants a D1 college he would have to play for FCD Academy or play for a nationally competitive Solar or Texans DA team.

Independent of all that he would still need to travel and play in big showcases and self promote. This route is very difficult but it can pay dividends so long as he focuses on standing out and contacts lots of programs.


Last edited by PremierLeagueFan on 9/15/2017, 3:48 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by finish1 on 9/15/2017, 3:40 pm

EB, thanks for sharing the links. The one to the map didn't work, but I was able to find the Tweet from NCAA Research. The data was a couple of years old, but probably still accurate.

A funny story is that BB is one of those .9% of HS soccer players in D1 (on scholarship too) and when the game announcers talk about him, they mention that he came out of the Texans DA program. They just can't admit that he's a HS player. LOL!

On top of being a HS player, BB is a freshman and has started 3 of the first 6 games this season and has 2 goals and 1 assist.

PLF, you're on the right track. Best of luck!
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by PremierLeagueFan on 9/15/2017, 4:15 pm

finish1 wrote:
PLF, you're on the right track. Best of luck!

Thanks that means a lot to me coming from such a great soccer parent who helped a lot of us gain a better insight by sharing your knowledge on the forum. Your experience has definitely helped me to navigate through the North Texas soccer matrix.
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by earbucket on 9/15/2017, 5:44 pm

finish1 wrote:EB, thanks for sharing the links. The one to the map didn't work, but I was able to find the Tweet from NCAA Research. The data was a couple of years old, but probably still accurate.

A funny story is that BB is one of those .9% of HS soccer players in D1 (on scholarship too) and when the game announcers talk about him, they mention that he came out of the Texans DA program. They just can't admit that he's a HS player. LOL!

On top of being a HS player, BB is a freshman and has started 3 of the first 6 games this season and has 2 goals and 1 assist.

PLF, you're on the right track. Best of luck!

Here is the tweet link NCAA Research .  It now includes girls percentages.  Texas is at 2.9%.  Figures for boys and girls are from 2015-2016, so it's not that old.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by dfwsoccerdad on 9/18/2017, 10:29 am

I am shocked at the difference b/w D1 and DA. D1 kids roll up a couple of minutes late to practice, joke around during pre-game warmups etc. Culture shock.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by bigtex75081 on 9/18/2017, 12:01 pm

dfwsoccerdad wrote:I am shocked at the difference b/w D1 and DA. D1 kids roll up a couple of minutes late to practice, joke around during pre-game warmups etc. Culture shock.
I don't think that's a DA vs Non-DA issue. That's more about the coach and the expectations he/she sets.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by FCD07 Mom on 9/18/2017, 6:23 pm

bigtex75081 wrote:
dfwsoccerdad wrote:I am shocked at the difference b/w D1 and DA. D1 kids roll up a couple of minutes late to practice, joke around during pre-game warmups etc. Culture shock.
I don't think that's a DA vs Non-DA issue.  That's more about the coach and the expectations he/she sets.

Yep...my kid is at a D1 program at one of the big 3. Arrive late to practice, u don't play that week's game. Arrive late to a pre-game warmups, you dont play.
No culture shock here....need to expect more from the coaches...

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by dfwsoccerdad on 9/19/2017, 10:09 am

Yeah. I may bring it up tactfully. We have been with super strict and pretty relaxed. Maybe something in the middle?

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by bigtex75081 on 9/19/2017, 10:37 am

dfwsoccerdad wrote:Yeah. I may bring it up tactfully. We have been with super strict and pretty relaxed. Maybe something in the middle?
Honestly... It might not be worth mentioning to the coach at all.  

If the team has been together for a long time with that same coach, they've already established the parameters for what is acceptable and what is not acceptable.  He may not care as much about punctuality as other people do.  The players' actions are simply reflecting the expectations set on them by the coach.  If this is a team that's been together for a while, that cat is already out of that bag.

I've coached.  I tend to keep things hard working but loose and fun.  I took on an assistant once that had a military background.  That background and the associated formality were applied in everything he did, even to his family life.  (I didn't realize how focused he was on this before agreeing to let him help.  His real vision was that this girls' team should train in a much more formal manner.  "YES SIR!" and "NO SIR!" was his first insisted change.)  When he became the assistant, he wanted the girls to suddenly meet his more rigid expectations.  The girls, after initially being taken aback, began to reject him and avoided working with him.  The girls and their parents began grumbling about his role. They were happy and already had a team they liked.  They strongly resisted his efforts because they'd already established their norm.

Once the cat is out of the bag on something like that (punctuality), it's a steep effort to get significant reform.  Is it really worth the effort if the impacted parties aren't excited for the change?

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by Soccer_Dad_NTX on 9/19/2017, 11:42 am

For Texas, it looks like college programs break out like this:

4 in NCAA D1
9 in NCAA D2
15 in NCAA D3
about 12 in NAIA
? for junior college programs

In Texas, at least, the vast majority of college ball is outside of D1.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by PremierLeagueFan on 9/20/2017, 7:58 am

The biggest difference between DA and D1 is quality! My BB played 3 years academy without injury. Last week in his first CCSAI game as a GK, he had a clean sheet and was kicked in the face twice with a resulting bloody nose. His nose is still swollen and might be broken but his question to me was: "why did they kick me in the face, when I had possession of the ball?

I told him it was sloppy, disorganized play and he agreed. He said he won't be able to prevent injury in his future games because the players are too aggressive and have poor ball control with limited motion control.

As a parent that sums up one of the main differences for me, but in all honesty the most impactful issue I have observed is in tactics and formation. I think CCSAI is losing out because the players don't have a good solid understanding of the why and how of a style of play or a specific formation and transition.

If you think I am kidding then ask your BB what his number is (not his jersey number) and the type of formation he plays and the strategy and benefits of that formation.
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by TikiTaka10 on 9/20/2017, 8:54 am

dfwsoccerdad wrote:I understand that you have a better chance of playing in college if you play USDA. My question is playing on the worst Academy team in your city versus playing on a top non-Academy team. In Dallas and Houston, there are great discrepancies in the teams (depending on the age group) and I wonder if it is worth it to stay on a poor Academy team rather than join a top non-Academy team.

Rather than focusing on which league to play on, you should focus on which Coach to play for. For as long as your child is clearly being developed properly, it's obvious that he or she is good, the grades are good, the league won't matter.

It goes down to how good are you as an individual??? The game is 90% mental, if you're good in D2 you're good anywhere. The same moves you use there you can use against the pros. The main difference is the pace, and that's something you can easily control. You just need to believe and not be afraid to try.

The biggest thing the DA gives you is exposure. Youtube gives you more exposure!
Exposure won't mean much if your child is not that good. Your child won't be that good if your coach is not that good...

Regardless of what your goal is (national team, pro, college...) your chances of accomplishing that goal depends heavily on how good your coach is and how good and committed/dedicated your child is. The league means very little. For as long as your child is good. I am a living examples. From Plano premier, to NCAA D1 on a FULL ATHLETIC SCHOLARSHIP, to D1 professional games is in Europe, to becoming a college coach.

College coaches must win to keep their job. In order to win they must be good and have good players. Their goal is to recruit the best players, regardless of where they play.

If your child plays for a D3 team and he's very good, he can get a D1 college scholarship. And for that all you need is a camera, youtube account, and an email account.

Even if you don't go to a single college showcase, you can still get a full scholarship. You just have to be very good, and introduce yourself to those who hold the opportunities you're looking for. Google will give you all the contacts you need!

"The people that make it in this world, they look for opportunities and if they can't find it they create them."

If you need help getting scholarships, PM me and I'll help you. FREE OF CHARGE, just make sure your kid is good.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by davito on 9/20/2017, 9:15 am

CCSAI incentivizes poor playing styles because the Richland fields are not good for passing and the subbing rules facilitate frequent fresh legs.

So games are played at 100mph and teams lump the ball forward and press hard in the final 3rd all game long hoping the opponent will make mistakes near their goal.

DA is played on better fields and there is no re-entry of subs. A total of 7 subs means at least 4 players on each team have to play the whole game.

The DA rules promote a better game. Teams can't close down space hard all game long and passing is more worthwhile on a good surface.

The refereeing is also far better in DA.
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by davito on 9/20/2017, 9:25 am

TikiTaka10 wrote:

If your child plays for a D3 team and he's very good, he can get a D1 college scholarship. And for that all you need is a camera, youtube account, and an email account.

Even if you don't go to a single college showcase, you can still get a full scholarship. You just have to be very good, and introduce yourself to those who hold the opportunities you're looking for. Google will give you all the contacts you need!

Any player can look good in a video. Just select all the good play against weak opponents and edit out all the errors.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by SnookumsConCarne on 9/20/2017, 11:16 am

davito wrote:
TikiTaka10 wrote:

If your child plays for a D3 team and he's very good, he can get a D1 college scholarship. And for that all you need is a camera, youtube account, and an email account.

Even if you don't go to a single college showcase, you can still get a full scholarship. You just have to be very good, and introduce yourself to those who hold the opportunities you're looking for. Google will give you all the contacts you need!

Any player can look good in a video. Just select all the good play against weak opponents and edit out all the errors.



If it fools the college coaches, why not?
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by davito on 9/20/2017, 11:48 am

Yeah, just got to ask yourself do you want to play for that fool.....
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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

Post by dfwsoccerdad on 9/20/2017, 12:48 pm

davito wrote:CCSAI incentivizes poor playing styles because the Richland fields are not good for passing and the subbing rules facilitate frequent fresh legs.

So games are played at 100mph and teams lump the ball forward and press hard in the final 3rd all game long hoping the opponent will make mistakes near their goal.

DA is played on better fields and there is no re-entry of subs. A total of 7 subs means at least 4 players on each team have to play the whole game.

The DA rules promote a better game. Teams can't close down space hard all game long and passing is more worthwhile on a good surface.

The refereeing is also far better in DA.

This is very true. It is 2 different games. I will say that the position my son plays gets a lot more action in 1 league vs. the other.

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Re: Playing in college (Academy vs. non-Academy)

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