(Part Two in a two-part series)
I can’t tell you what a good GPA is–this varies depending which coach and school you are talking to. What I can tell you is that if you strive for C’s–that 2.0 mark–you are not helping yourself in any way, shape or form.
As noted in Part 1 of this series, your GPA tells much more about you than you may think. To understand this we can bring back the term “Think Like a Coach”. As a recruit you need to understand what a coach is attempting to do with you as a student-athlete. Most coaches assume certain things about student-athletes and grade point average can be the first piece of information that leads to these assumptions.
The Structured Life
Coaches understand that student-athletes are likely to live at their parent or guardian’s house and eat the food their parents provide for them. Parents make sure student-athletes aren’t out late on a Friday night partying, that the student-athletes are up in time for school and are studying on a regular basis. Basically they make the assumption that the student-athlete lives a structured lifestyle through the guidance of his parents.
A coach is going to pluck that student-athlete from the structure they have known their entire life and place them in a completely foreign setting, sometimes thousands of miles away from familiar faces. The structure these student-athletes have known will be gone–they will be completely on their own.
A Welcome Challenge or a Disaster?
They will have free will to eat, study, party, work out, play, go to practice and get good grades. But only if they want to. This is a welcome challenge for some and a disaster for others. What coaches see is that if a student-athlete has shown the ability to be successful with the structure provided at home, they generally will succeed outside the structure as well. The questions come with those students who manage to struggle even within that provided structure.
Don’t Be a Liability
Coaches will ask themselves, “If they didn’t care enough to succeed while everything was being handed to them, what happens when they are completely on their own?” The answer is that these are the athletes that become the liabilities; coaches don’t like liabilities because so much money is at stake with a scholarship on the line.
Your GPA is a Reflection of Your Character
Understand that your GPA is a direct reflection of your character, how much you care and the type of person you are. Your GPA can open many doors if you work hard at it and impress coaches with your ability to succeed in the classroom. A poor GPA can close just as many well before a coach even cares to look further into who you are. This is an important lesson to understand as a recruit and one which can benefit you in college recruiting and in life.