Simon Fraser University is among one of the seven institutions being considered for NCAA membership at the Division II level. If approved, it would be the first Canadian member school, and the first school to be located outside of the U.S.
The NCAA has over 1,200 members across the division levels, and the approval of Simon Fraser University would mark the first member to lie outside the U.S. SFU has been a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and will transition into the NCAA Division II level which offers a similar level of competition if they get approved by the NCAA. Simon Fraser University isn’t the only international school vying for NCAA membership either; there are a couple of universities in Mexico that have also expressed interest in joining.
Being able to compete as an NCAA institution will help allow the athletics at SFU to grow and also give the boost to the university’s profile. The NCAA dominates the world of college sports, and being a member can be very beneficial to a university. Athletes at SFU will benefit from the wider range of competitors and prospective students also see more opportunities for finding somewhere to play college sports.
So what does that mean for you as a recruit? Well, there are several things to consider as the NCAA grows. With more member institutions, there are more opportunities to be able to compete in college athletics. Having member schools in Canada and Mexico would also give American students a chance to study abroad, but stay a little closer to home. But there are also some downsides. This means there are more opportunities for other student-athletes to compete for the same positions that you are. You will have to work even harder to get the attention of college coaches. This could also affect your eligibility as an international athlete, so it will be critical for you to know and understand the rules.
Here are some tips to help:
- Do your research; make sure you are thinking critically about what kind of school you want to attend and what will be best for you.
- Read and understand the basic eligibility requirements for international athletes and work to get what you need.
- Put together a package of informationto send to college coaches when you first contact them; give them what they need to consider you as a potential recruit from the beginning