Dos & Don’ts When Choosing a College for Basketball

choosing college for basketball

As summer comes to a close, the time for high school basketball players to think more seriously about where they want to go to college is fast approaching.

Maybe some new schools have reached out to you about playing for them. Maybe you’ve learned that you will play DII or DIII instead of DI. Or maybe all you know is that you want to play college basketball. 

Every year, we see PSB players and their parents dive into the process of making a college choice. It’s not easy and not a decision that should be taken lightly. After all, this will hopefully be the next four years of your life as well as your network of friends, alumni and professionals.

Below is our list of Dos and Don’ts when deciding on where to play college basketball.

 

Dos:

#1 List your Priorities

I can’t overstate how important this is. Everyone is different and everyone might be looking for something different from their college experience.

Do you know you want to be an engineer?

Then finding a school with a good engineering program might be high on your list.

Want to play right away?

Do you want to stay close to home?

Go far away? Go to a big school?

Go to a small school?

Play for a certain type of coach?

Be surrounded by a certain kind of teammate?

This is just a small sample of what might be important for you as there are many, many variables that might affect your decision. But, it is very important to weigh your priorities and write them down.

#2 Ask for Help

For a lot of parents and players, the recruiting process is brand new to them. The number of schools, conferences, divisions, rules and levels can be overwhelming.

Also, many parents and players go into the process with a drastically skewed perception of what level they can realistically play at, schools they should be hearing from, when they should receive scholarship offers…and on and on.

It’s important to seek out advice from people that have either been through the process before or are very knowledgeable about college recruiting. Guidance can be extremely valuable!

#3 Do your Research

It’s important to keep an open mind during this process. Just because you’ve never heard of a school doesn’t mean that they’re not for you. Just because you’ve never been to that part of the country doesn’t mean you won’t like it.

Or, just because you don’t know about DIII basketball doesn’t mean that your college basketball experience can’t be extremely fulfilling.

Learn as much about the school, coach, conference, division and area as you can. Nothing beats an in-person visit, but internet research and talking with people that know more about a school than you do can be very helpful!

college basketball by state

Don’ts:

#1 Skip the Visit

Piggybacking off the last “Do”, visiting a school before making your final decision is a MUST! Don’t rely on your perceptions based off of TV and the internet to make your final choice.

Don’t rely solely on text messages and phone calls to decide that a coach is for you…have we learned nothing from Catfish?

Don’t make up your mind before meeting your future coach and teammates and seeing your school in person.

#2 Concern yourself with others perceptions

Do you not want to go to a small school because you’re concerned with what other people will think?

Do you not want to look at DIII schools because you believe other people will think you’re not a good player?

Do you feel pressure cause you know your parents want you to go to a specific school?

If there was ever a time in your life to put yourself first and not worry with what other people think, it’s when you’re deciding on where you want to go to college.

This will be your life for the next four years and beyond. You will be the one going to classes, hanging out in the locker room, attending parties and making friends.

Do not settle for what other people think you should do or concern yourself with other perceptions of you as a player. Find a place where you feel comfortable.

#3 Believe in False Promises

Is a coach telling you how great he thinks you are and painting this perfect picture of you as a future member of the school’s Hall of Fame?

Is he guaranteeing you playing time?

A starting position?

Going on and on about how well you will fit with everyone else he is recruiting?

Please understand, the coach that is recruiting you is not the coach that will be coaching you. Once games start, fans sit in the bleachers, alums start airing their grievances and jobs are on the line, everything you believed as a recruit will seem like a different life.

Understand that this is the way it is and prepare yourself to think critically about everything you’re told. Find coaches, staff and teammates that you trust!

 

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KARL BARKLEY’S CHINA BASKETBALL ADVENTURES: June 2018

PSB China BasketballThe month of June started with a hike at Longquan mountain, just outside of Chengdu.

The mountain, which ended up being more of a glorified hill, was peaceful and provided excellent vantages of the Sichuan countryside.

It was a nice first hike to get my feet wet, but there are a number of more rigorous treks further out in the province that I have planned for future months.

My CIBL season came to a disappointing in with a buzzer beater loss in the playoffs. Our team was leading for the entire game, but sloppy possessions and porous defense late gave the other team the chance they needed to put us away.

Overall I enjoyed the first season, but definitely noticed subtle differences in Chinese basketball culture in comparison to its stateside counterpart.

Some were fun, and others – like the occasional spats between foreign and Chinese teams – were less so.

I’m looking forward to a lot of casual pick-up this summer to get back to enjoying the game in a less competitive environment.

I took some much needed R&R and traveled by myself to Thailand for a long weekend at the beach in Krabi. Traveling with friends is usually a more comfortable experience, but I find I learn a lot more about myself while traveling alone.

It also provides the chance to find new friends along the way like the two I met in Krabi: Gary from Southampton, England, and Jessica from Shanghai, China.

PSB China Basketball

My current lease ends in a few weeks so June has included a lot of apartment hunting all over Chengdu.

I recently found a place a little closer to the city near a metro stop that I think I’m going to move on within the next few days.

It is much more convenient for getting to my Chinese classes and provides a new area of the city for me to explore.

Finally, I’m gearing up for our PSB China Trip in August. We are bringing a number of our program’s elite players, both past, and present, for a three-city tour in China.

The goal is to introduce these young men to Chinese culture while providing a unique basketball experience via scrimmages and clinics.

Right now we are planning to play a famous streetball team in Shanghai, the top academic institution – Tsinghua University – in Beijing, and Sichuan’s very own CBA team, the Blue Whales. Stay tuned for updates!

That’s it for June, come back next month for the July recap!

TOP 5 REASONS WHY KIDS SHOULD WEAR A MOUTH GUARD

kids wear mouth guards basketball

What is a Mouthguard?

A Mouthguard is a dental appliance that acts like a cushion made of high-grade dental plastic material that protects the teeth, mouth and jaw. A protective mouthguard should be comfortable, resilient, tear-resistant, durable and easy to clean.  

It should not restrict speech or breathing and should fit properly.  In basketball, communication plays an important role to effectively exhibit teamwork and win games.  

Players communicate when they need to pass the ball, assist a co-player, yell when he or she is open, or thank a team mate for a good play.  Hence, a mouthguard should be a perfect fit for it not to be a hindrance for good team play and communication.

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PSB ELITE 17U UNDER ARMOUR ASSOCIATION CHALLENGE PREVIEW

By: Zain Motani

Pro Skills Basketball 15U, 16U, and 17U Elite teams will be participating in the Under Armour Association Challenge this week in Atlanta.

The 17U PSB Elite team faces a pair of teams out of Texas (Texas Impact; Texas Hardwork) and a team out of New York (NX Level) on Wednesday and Thursday before bracket play begins on Friday.

Below are some of the top PSB players to watch in Atlanta this weekend!

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5 QUESTIONS WITH NBA GUARD MALIK MONK

In June, we hosted the first session of the Malik Monk Basketball Camp in Charlotte, North Carolina. The second session will take place August 6-9 in Huntersville, NC and there is still room to sign up!

The Malik Monk Basketball Camp is a week-long summer camp powered by us, Pro Skills Basketball, a Jr. NBA Flagship Organization.

This camp is a special way for Malik to give back to the game while providing a fun opportunity for young boys and girls ages 6-17 to learn the game.

The camp includes appearances by Malik, a personal picture, and autograph for each camper as well as a ton of fun drills, competitions, and games.

During the first day of camp, all of the different age groups took part in the “Meet & Greet and Q&A” station where the campers all got to personally meet Malik as well as ask him any questions they wanted.

The video above highlights some of the questions and answers, and they’re also transcribed below!

Here are 5 questions that we had the opportunity to ask Malik Monk.

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