So you have followed our advice and worked hard all year, but you didn’t get any offers from and/or didn’t get accepted to any of the schools you wanted. This is a tough spot. There are two ways you can look at it: you can feel sorry for yourself and get angry at everyone or you can look at it as a challenge to overcome. Keep in mind that Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, but he chose to take that as a challenge and worked as hard as he could to get to the next level and beyond. His mindset was positive and the results speak for themselves.
While there is no guarantee that you will play college baseball, you can take pride in knowing that you did everything you could to try to get there. You left no doubts or “what ifs.” So, what is our advice? Don’t give up now! There are still a few things you can do if you really want to play college baseball. Let’s look at some of the possibilities depending on your situation.
You didn’t get recruited at all.
Contact junior college (JC) coaches in your area. JC ball can be a great place to focus on improving your skills and grades. Maybe you haven’t fully matured yet, and while you are still growing, you can work on improving your baseball skills while getting bigger and stronger at a JC. Another great option is to take a gap year and focus on intensive training. Most kids who don’t get recruited out of high school need more time to mature physically or develop their skills. Taking a gap year to focus on training and getting bigger and stronger pays off for dedicated players every year when they are rewarded with a roster spot.
You didn’t get accepted anywhere.
Again, consider attending a JC. Maybe you didn’t apply to a wide enough range of schools or were overly ambitious. You still may be able to make it to one of those schools if you improve your academic and baseball skills at a JC and transfer. Gap year is another option here as well.
You got accepted, but not to the school you wanted and the coach at the school that accepted you doesn’t know about you.
Not getting in where you want to go to school can leave a sour taste in your mouth. If this scenario applies to you, contact the coach immediately. Let him know that you are already admitted to the school. Find out as much as you can about the program and if there is room for you on the team. Read our article about what it means to be a walk-on here. If the baseball prospects work out, sometimes a school or college experience can be surprisingly good. If not, you can always look to transfer somewhere else. Before you do anything, find out as much as you can about the program and opportunities, and then go from there. Transferring can have some complications, so make sure you read up on the NCAA transfer guides and know the ramifications for enrolling.
You got accepted, but not to the school you wanted. However, there is a spot for you on the baseball team where you were accepted if you want it.
First, you should cheer up because things could be worse. Why don’t you want to play there? If this is your only option, it might be worth going in with a positive attitude and giving it a fair shot. You can transfer out if it doesn’t work. Your other option would be to go to a JC and then try to transfer to a more desirable school. Keep in mind that at any school you go to, you will get out what you put in. While some may be a better fit than others, you could find that the school is a better fit than you thought.
You got accepted to one of your dream schools, but are not good enough to play baseball there.
This can be a tough decision. Do you go to a school where you think you will be really happy and give up baseball? Only you can make this decision. Look into whether they have a club team in addition to their NCAA participation. Club baseball may be enough to satisfy your baseball hunger while still allowing you to go to the school of your dreams. See if you can try to walk on the baseball team or maybe help out as a student manager. This is tough, but you should try to be happy that you got into a school you want to go to.
Sometimes things in life don’t work out quite the way you planned but with all these options, you should be able to find a way to Keep Playing Baseball (at least for fun). No matter what happens, all the skills you learned while working hard on and off the field will help you handle the challenges ahead, in college and in life.