How to Find A JUCO to Play College Basketball For: Unsigned Seniors

How to find a JUCO to play college basketball for

If you have decided you want to go the Junior College route, it is a great option many players take. Players like you, can complete your first two years of college and get a 2 year degree. After this, you can transfer to play for a 4 year school on scholarship. Junior College is very competitive, filled with players aspiring to move onto play D1 basketball. However, players also use this opportunity to transfer to other divisions such as the NCAA D2, D3, NAIA, USCAA, and the NCCAA. It is important to mention that NCAA D1 and D2 coaches put serious time into recruiting and evaluating Junior College players, so you can be confident knowing that this is a good option for you. Going to a Junior College will give you a great opportunity to further improve on your athletic abilities as well as your academics. You will have an extra 2 years to build on your size, skills and athleticism. You will play against a good level of competition and you will get much better and you will also receive high level coaching and learn what it takes to play college basketball.

Getting Your Information Organized for Junior College Coaches

The first step in getting yourself recruited to play for a Junior College is to get yourself organized. You need to have a basketball profile together. This profile needs to have all the information a Junior College coach is going to want to see. Make sure you include your full name, graduation year, position(s) you play, height, weight, stats, and a video of all your most recent high school basketball highlights. If you want to include things like basketball achievements and one rep max etc. this is fine but make sure you have what is needed to back them up. Junior College coaches have a lot of players interested in playing for their program, so you want to make sure that your information is clear, concise and makes a positive impression.

TIP: Leave out the background music in your video. Junior College coaches prefer players to have no music while watching their videos. Junior College coaches have told us directly! This will also save you time and effort that is not needed.

Update Your Video Before Sending it to Junior College Coaches

If you have some film laying around from one of your last senior games or a basketball tournament you played in, get on it and update your video. You need to make sure you have all your most recent highlights together before you send it out to a Junior College coach. This is your first impression to the coach. You want to really catch his attention. You can do this by having a well thought out and well put together highlight video. Make sure you cover all aspects of your game so the JUCO coach has a clear understanding of your talent and abilities. You can section these up under the following headings: shooting (mid range and 3 point), spotting up and off the dribble, driving to the basket, cutting to the basket, posting up (if applicable), passing, rebounding, blocked shots, steals etc. Make sure you keep your highlight video under 5 mins. Don’t make it too long. Additionally, make sure you have your 3 best, unedited, full games available. If the Junior College coach is interested in you after seeing your highlight video, there is a good chance the coach will want to see your full game.

How to Contact Junior College Coaches

Coaches need to see you play to be interest. You want to make sure you are utilizing your time. They way to utilize your time when contacting Junior College coaches is to make sure they are still recruiting and have not completed their roster for the season. You also want to focus in on Junior College coaches who are still recruiting your position. Don’t spend your time contacting JUCO coaches who are recruiting a point guard if you are a spot-up shooter. When you have identified the Junior Colleges that are recruiting your position, you should send them your profile and video so they can evaluate you.

Can I Get a Scholarship to Junior College?

Yes you can, but not all Junior College offer the same deal. Some Junior Colleges offer full scholarships, some Junior Colleges offer partial scholarships and other Junior College offer no scholarships. Junior Colleges who are competing in either D1, D2 or D3 division have to follow certain guidelines established by the NJCAA. Junior Colleges who play D1 can give players full scholarships (tuition, books, fees, room & board, up to $250 in course required supplies, and transportation costs one time per academic year to and from the college by direct route). However, there do have a limit on how many can be given out.  Junior Colleges who play D2 can give players partial scholarships (limited to tuition, books, fees, and up to $250 in course required supplies). And, Junior College who play D3 can’t give athletic scholarships.

NOTE: Just because a Junior College plays in D1 or D2 doesn’t mean they necessarily offer full or partial scholarships. It is up to the school whether they want to, or not.

What are the Different Divisions of Junior College?

There are three different divisions in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA), commonly referred to as “JUCO”. They are:

Talking to Junior College Coaches Who Are Interested in You

When a JUCO basketball coach is interested in you, the first step is to have a conversation with the coach. We recommend making a full list of questions you want to ask the coach about the basketball program and the school. This helps because it is easy to forget a question when you are mid-conversation with a coach. This way, you can make sure you get all your questions answered at the same time. It can also be helpful to take notes. Listen carefully  to what the coach has to say about the basketball program and what role they have envisioned for you at the JUCO. This way you can review your notes later to help you make your decision. If you like what you hear, and think that this JUCO could be a good fit for you, the next step is to visit the campus! It’s always an eye opening experience to visit a JUCO campus because you can’t really know what its going to be like until you have physically been there. By visiting a campus you get to see the area it is located in, what type of facilities they have available to you and you also get to meet the coach you will be playing for in person. All this information is vital for you to make the right JUCO choice.