Academic Information

Q: What’s a good GPA to have to get recruited for a scholarship?

A: Important to note, just because you meet the NCAA minimum requirements, that doesn’t guarantee you admission to any university. Each school sets their own academic standards, oftentimes higher than the NCAA’s requirements. Always aim to earn the highest grades that you can so it won’t eliminate schools from your list.

If you are interested in a Division I scholarship, your required GPA depends on your ACT/SAT test scores on the NCAA Sliding Scale.

For example, if you graduate in 2015 and will enroll for the Fall 2015 semester, you will need: … A 3.550 & above GPA if you had an 400 SAT* score or 37 ACT** score … A 3.000 GPA if you had an 620 SAT* score or 52 ACT** score … A 2.500 GPA if you had an 820 SAT* score or 68 ACT** score

*SAT scores are figured by combining critical reading and math sections only. The best subscore from each section is used to determine the SAT combined score for initial eligibility.

** ACT scores are figured by combining English, math, reading and science sections. The best subscore from each section is used to determine the ACT sum score for initial eligibility.

This is only a partial list of scores and GPAs, to see the full list – CLICK HERE. Be sure to note your enrollment date, new standards go into effect on August 1, 2016.

For NCAA Division II, institutions require a minimum 2.000 GPA in core courses and a minimum 820 SAT score (Critical Reading + Math sections only) or an ACT sum score of 68 (total of English + Math + Reading + Science scores). (Note: Division II Eligibility Requirements change for students enrolling after August 1, 2018- click HERE for info.)

NCAA DIII institutions do not have uniform academic requirements. Eligibility for admission, financial aid and athletics eligibility is determined by each college or university.

For National Junior College Athletic Association, click here.

For NAIA, click here.

If you can’t make the eligibility requirement, there’s nothing a coach can do for you. Bad grades aren’t often because a lack of intelligence but rather a lack of effort—you must be prepared.

Coaches love players who take care of business in the classroom. Most times, your academic track record will predict how you will do in college. Will you be able to do what’s required of you or do you need to be babysat and pushed every step of the way in college? If it’s a challenge in high school, coaches know you will likely be a challenge for you to qualify in college (and have academic eligibility issues at some point in college).

Q: It’s my SR year, do you have a checklist of what I should be doing to play at next level?

Q: I’m a rising JR, where should I be with the recruiting process?

Q: I’m a SOPH and not sure how to get started with the recruiting process. Advice?

Q: I’m a FR, what should I be doing to put myself in a good position to get recruited later?

NCAA Eligibility

*Register With the NCAA

It used to be called the NCAA clearinghouse, but now it’s the NCAA Eligibility Center that students must register with to validate their status as an amateur athlete.  (This is to ensure an athlete isn’t secretly playing point guard for the LA Lakers during their high school career.)

The process is relatively pain-free; all you need is $50 and a Social Security number. But don’t leave it to the last minute. Every year a few student athletes miss out on the chance to play collegiately, because they fail to register with the NCAA Eligibility Center.

Quick Tip: Register with the NCAA by your junior year.

The NCAA Eligibility Center is responsible for determining the eligibility of every college-bound student-athlete in NCAA Divisions I and II using the following two areas:

  • Academic Certification.  Does the college-bound student-athlete meet the legislated minimum academic requirements?
  • Amateurism Certification.  Has the college-bound student-athlete jeopardized his or her amateur status?

Initial-Eligibility Overview: Academics

  • Academic:  initial-eligibility requirements are different for each of the three divisions.
  • It is possible for a college-bound student-athlete to be eligible in one division and not another.

NCAA Division I Academic Requirements

  • In order to practice, compete and receive institutional financial aid as a freshman, a student-athlete must:
    • Graduate from high school;
    • Earn a minimum required grade-point average (GPA) in 16 approved core courses; and
    • Earn a combined SAT or ACT sum score that matches the core-course GPA (refer to the “sliding scale” in the NCAA Guide for the College-Bound Student-Athlete.

NCAA Division II Academic Requirements

  • In order to practice, compete and receive institutional financial aid as a freshman, a student-athlete must:
    • Graduate from high school;
    • Earn at least a 2.0 GPA in 14 approved core courses; and
    • Earn a combined SAT score of at least 820 (critical reading and math) or an ACT sum score of at least 68.
  • No sliding scale for Division II

* Beginning August 1, 2013, students planning to attend an NCAA Division II institution will be required to complete 16 core courses.

NCAA Division III Academic Requirements

  • Unlike Divisions I and II, there is no uniform set of eligibility requirements for Division III schools.
  • Eligibility for admission, financial aid, practice and competition is determined by the institution.