How To Get Recruited For College Wrestling: Best Guide!

How To Get Recruited For College Wrestling

Becoming a collegiate wrestler is a dream cherished by many young athletes who are passionate about the sport. It’s a journey that requires not only exceptional wrestling skills but also a strategic approach to recruitment.

The process of getting recruited for college wrestling is a blend of athletic excellence and academic achievement, where your commitment to both aspects plays a pivotal role.

In this guide, we will explore the steps and strategies to help you navigate the recruitment process successfully, from understanding the collegiate wrestling landscape to creating a compelling profile that catches the eye of college coaches. Whether you’re an aspiring high school wrestler or a parent eager to support your athlete, this guide is your roadmap to realizing the dream of wrestling at the college level.

How To Get Recruited For College Wrestling

Collegiate wrestling is organized into different divisions, each with its own level of competition and scholarship opportunities. Here are the primary divisions:

NCAA Division I: This is the highest level of collegiate wrestling. Division I schools offer the most competitive programs and the largest number of scholarships. Athletes at this level compete at a high intensity and often have a strong commitment to their sport.

NCAA Division I: Division II schools also offer competitive wrestling programs but typically have fewer scholarships available than Division I schools. Athletes here balance their academic and athletic commitments.

NCAA Division II: Division III schools prioritize the student-athlete experience and do not offer athletic scholarships. However, they provide a strong wrestling community and emphasize the importance of academics.

NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics): NAIA schools offer wrestling programs similar to NCAA Division II in terms of competition level. They provide athletic scholarships and are an excellent option for athletes looking for a smaller, close-knit community.

NJCAA (National Junior College Athletic Association): Junior colleges offer two-year wrestling programs that can serve as a stepping stone to four-year colleges. They are an excellent option for athletes looking to improve their skills before transferring.

Research Colleges and Wrestling Programs

Once you understand the different divisions, it’s crucial to research colleges and wrestling programs that align with your academic and athletic goals. Here are some steps to consider:

Academic Fit: Look for colleges that offer your desired major or field of study. Your academic success is as important as your athletic performance.

Wrestling Program: Investigate the wrestling program’s history, coaching staff, and competitiveness within its division. Do they have a track record of success, and are they known for developing athletes?

Campus Culture: Consider the campus culture and environment. Do you see yourself thriving both academically and personally at that college?

Location: Think about the location of the college. Are you comfortable with the geographical location and climate?

Financial Aid: Explore the availability of athletic scholarships, grants, and financial aid options. Determine the cost of attendance and how you plan to fund your education.

Athletic Facilities: Assess the quality of wrestling facilities and training opportunities available at the college.

Understanding the collegiate wrestling landscape and researching potential colleges and wrestling programs will help you make informed decisions as you pursue your goal of wrestling at the college level.

Academic Preparation and Eligibility

Academic preparation is a critical aspect of the college wrestling recruitment process. College coaches not only look for skilled athletes but also students who can meet academic eligibility requirements. Here’s how you can ensure you are academically prepared and meet the eligibility criteria, especially if you aspire to compete in NCAA or NAIA wrestling programs.  To be academically prepared:

Prioritize Your Studies: Dedicate time to your studies and maintain good grades throughout high school. Your academic record is a significant factor in the recruitment process.

Meet Core Course Requirements: Familiarize yourself with the NCAA or NAIA core course requirements. These organizations have specific guidelines regarding the types and number of courses you must complete in high school.

Take Challenging Courses: Challenge yourself with advanced or honors courses when possible. This demonstrates your commitment to academic excellence.

Prepare for Standardized Tests: Many colleges and wrestling programs require SAT or ACT scores for admissions and eligibility. Study and prepare well in advance of test dates to achieve competitive scores.

Seek Academic Support: If you encounter academic difficulties, don’t hesitate to seek help from teachers, tutors, or counselors. Strong academic performance can open doors to both wrestling opportunities and scholarships.

Understand NCAA or NAIA Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible to compete in NCAA or NAIA wrestling programs, you need to meet specific eligibility requirements. Here’s an overview:

NCAA Eligibility Center: Register with the NCAA Eligibility Center during your high school career. This process involves providing your academic and athletic information, including your high school transcripts and standardized test scores. The Eligibility Center will evaluate your academic credentials to determine eligibility.

NAIA Eligibility Center: Similar to the NCAA, the NAIA has its own eligibility requirements and eligibility center. Register with the NAIA Eligibility Center to have your academic and athletic eligibility assessed.

Maintain Amateur Status: To compete in collegiate wrestling, you must maintain your amateur status. Avoid accepting money, prizes, or benefits related to your wrestling activities that violate NCAA or NAIA rules.

Meet Academic Standards: Both the NCAA and NAIA have specific academic eligibility requirements based on your high school GPA, standardized test scores, and core course completion. Familiarize yourself with these requirements and work to meet or exceed them.

Stay Informed: Regulations and eligibility requirements may change, so it’s essential to stay informed about updates and any changes in NCAA or NAIA rules.

Academic preparation and eligibility are fundamental aspects of your journey to collegiate wrestling. By maintaining strong academic performance and understanding the specific eligibility requirements of the NCAA or NAIA, you position yourself as a well-rounded student-athlete ready to excel both in the classroom and on the mat.

Showcase Your Wrestling Skills

If you’re aspiring to wrestle at the college level, effectively showcasing your wrestling skills is crucial. College coaches need to see your abilities in action. Here’s how you can do that:

Build a Wrestling Resume

A wrestling resume is a tool that allows you to present your wrestling achievements and skills to college coaches in a structured and organized manner. Here’s how to create an impressive wrestling resume:

Contact Information: Start with your contact information, including your name, address, phone number, email address, and your high school’s name and address.

Wrestling Achievements: Highlight your key wrestling accomplishments. This could include championships, tournament wins, and notable rankings. Be sure to mention any state or national recognition you’ve received.

Weight Class: Specify your primary weight class and any weight class flexibility you have.

Statistics: Include relevant wrestling statistics, such as your win-loss record, pins, and bonus-point victories.

Wrestling Style: Describe your wrestling style, strengths, and areas where you excel, such as takedowns, escapes, or mat strategy.

Academic Information: Mention your GPA, standardized test scores (SAT/ACT), and your intended field of study in college.

Wrestling References: Include the contact information of your high school wrestling coach and any other wrestling references who can vouch for your skills and character.

Video Highlights: Provide a link to a video highlight reel showcasing your wrestling skills in action. High-quality video footage can be a game-changer in getting noticed by college coaches.

Attend Wrestling Tournaments and Showcases

Attending wrestling tournaments and showcases is an excellent way to get your skills in front of college coaches. Here’s how to make the most of these opportunities:

Research Events: Identify wrestling tournaments and showcases that attract college coaches from the programs you’re interested in. Look for events that align with your wrestling level and goals.

Prepare Physically: Ensure you’re in top physical condition for these events. Regular training and conditioning are essential to perform your best.

Compete Competitively: Approach each match with a competitive mindset. College coaches are looking for wrestlers who give their all, regardless of the competition level.

Interact with Coaches: If you’re interested in a specific college program, reach out to the coach before the event. Express your interest and ask if they’ll be attending the event. If possible, arrange a meeting or conversation during the event.

Showcase Your Skills: During matches, focus on showcasing your skills. Implement your strengths, and don’t be afraid to take calculated risks.

Stay Professional: Remember that you’re not just showcasing your wrestling skills but also your sportsmanship and attitude. Be respectful to opponents, coaches, and officials.

Collect Contact Information: If a college coach expresses interest in you, collect their contact information and follow up with a thank-you email or letter.

Effectively showcasing your wrestling skills through a well-structured wrestling resume and by participating in relevant tournaments and showcases can significantly enhance your chances of getting noticed by college coaches and earning a spot on a collegiate wrestling team.

Connecting with College Wrestling Coaches

Building relationships with college wrestling coaches is a crucial step in the recruiting process. It’s essential to initiate contact with coaches and create a compelling recruiting profile to stand out. Here’s how to go about it:

Initiate Contact with Coaches

Research Colleges: Start by researching colleges that offer wrestling programs aligned with your goals academically and athletically. Consider factors such as program competitiveness, location, and academic offerings.

Create a List: Create a list of colleges you’re interested in and rank them based on your preferences.

Find Coach Contact Information: Locate the contact information for the wrestling coaches at these colleges. Most colleges have coach contact details on their athletic department websites.

Craft an Introductory Email: Write a personalized introductory email to each coach. In the email:
– Introduce yourself briefly, mentioning your name, high school, and wrestling accomplishments.
– Express your genuine interest in their wrestling program and college.
– Highlight why you believe you’d be a valuable addition to their team.
– Mention any upcoming tournaments or showcases you plan to attend where they can watch you wrestle.

Attach Your Wrestling Resume: Include your wrestling resume as an attachment to the email. This provides coaches with a comprehensive overview of your skills and achievements.

Follow Up: If you don’t receive a response within a reasonable time frame, don’t be discouraged. Follow up with a polite reminder email. Coaches receive numerous inquiries, and it’s possible your initial email got lost in the shuffle.

Phone Calls: If a coach expresses interest or responds positively, consider scheduling a phone call or virtual meeting to discuss your potential fit within their program. Be prepared to ask questions about the team, the coach’s coaching philosophy, and the college’s wrestling facilities.

Create a Compelling Wrestling Recruiting Profile

A wrestling recruiting profile is a digital or paper document that provides a comprehensive overview of your wrestling career and academic achievements. It helps coaches quickly evaluate your potential. Here’s how to create an effective profile:

Contact Information: Include your name, contact number, email address, and high school information.

Academic Information: Mention your GPA, standardized test scores (SAT/ACT), and intended field of study.

Wrestling Accomplishments: Highlight your wrestling achievements, including tournament wins, rankings, and awards. Specify your weight class.

Statistics: Include your wrestling statistics, such as win-loss record, pins, and bonus-point victories.

Wrestling Style: Describe your wrestling style, strengths, and key skills. Discuss your approach to training and competition.

Video Highlights: Provide links to video highlight reels showcasing your wrestling skills in action. Ensure the videos are of high quality and well-edited.

References: Include references from coaches, mentors, or teachers who can vouch for your character and work ethic.

Transcripts and Test Scores: Attach copies of your high school transcripts and standardized test scores, if applicable.

Schedule: Mention any upcoming wrestling events where coaches can watch you compete.

Creating a compelling recruiting profile and reaching out to college coaches demonstrates your proactive approach to the recruitment process. It helps you make a strong impression and increases your chances of finding the right wrestling program and college fit.

The recruitment process is a pivotal phase in your journey to college wrestling. It’s essential to schedule visits, evaluate your options, and make informed decisions.


The journey to becoming a college wrestler is a thrilling pursuit that combines athletic dedication with academic excellence. As you navigate the path to getting recruited, remember that your dream of wrestling at the collegiate level is within reach, and it’s a journey worth the effort.

By understanding the college wrestling landscape, maintaining strong academics, showcasing your skills, connecting with coaches, and making informed decisions, you are not only positioning yourself as a desirable recruit but also taking charge of your future. Your hard work, discipline, and passion for the sport have brought you to this point, and they will continue to be your allies as you embark on this exciting chapter.

FAQs: How To Get Recruited For College Wrestling

 I aspire to wrestle in college. What should be my initial step to get noticed by college wrestling programs?

Begin by building a strong wrestling resume, including participating in high school competitions, attending wrestling camps, and maintaining good grades. This will help you get on the radar of college wrestling coaches.

 What can I do to increase my chances of receiving wrestling scholarships or recruitment offers?

Besides showcasing your wrestling skills, reach out to college coaches, create a recruiting profile, and attend college wrestling events. Maintain a competitive GPA, as academics play a crucial role in securing scholarships.

What eligibility rules should I be aware of when pursuing college wrestling recruitment?

Yes, there are NCAA and NAIA eligibility requirements, including academic standards and amateur status rules. It’s essential to familiarize yourself with these guidelines and maintain your eligibility throughout the recruitment process.

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