How to Get on a D1 College Basketball Team

Three Methods:Earn a ScholarshipJUCO/Post Graduate Year(s)Walk On

There are over 100 NCAA Division 1 (D1) schools with at least 12 players on each team. Yet this does not make getting on the team easy at all. Colleges are looking at over a hundreds or thousands high school prospects, and you have to find a way to stand out.

Method 1
Earn a Scholarship

  1. 1
    Choose the Right High School. Evaluate the high school before you attend it. See if it best fits you. Know what advantages you'll get from the school. Advantages Could Include:
    • Challenging basketball Division. (schedule)
    • Attends basketball exposure tournaments.
    • Good learning environment.
    • Lack of talents-to make varsity easier and sooner.
  2. 2
    Make your Varsity Team. The sooner the easier. Introduce yourself to the head coach prior to your freshman year. Let him know what your goals are and see what his goals are for the team. See what style the team plays at. Here are a few ways to make the team.
    • Hustle! Coaches love to see a guy that is willing to get down and dirty, fight to lose balls.
    • Be Athletic, people can't help but keep an eye out for the blazing fast kid or the kid that's throwing down dunks.
    • Be Well-Rounded, you don't even have to be average at every aspect of your game, EX: Don't look like you've never dribbled a ball or rebounded when doing drills
    • Do what you do best. Don't go out there doing new things or do that one move you practice every once in a while, if you're a shooter shoot 3's, slasher go to the basket, defensive types, stop your guy and try to get a steal/block.
  3. 3
    Play for a local AAU team. AAU is the best way to improve your game in the off season. Not only that, but you can also get college coaches attention in some tournaments. Do some research on the AAU team, see how many DI alums the team has
  4. 4
    Get good grades. There are countless numbers of prospects that had to settle with no scholarship and play DIII basketball or use a year or two of there NCAA eligibility to catch up on there grades. Having a good GPA that's well above the the standards gives a college coach more confidence that you will be eligible in the college level.
  5. 5
    Contact Colleges. Email a college coach, make official visit (unofficial visit if you're an underclassmen in high school). In emails share goals you hit, highlight videos and other info that might interest the coach.
  6. 6
    Make a recruiting profile. Nowadays there are a bunch of recruiting websites you can join. There you can add highlight videos, stats, and personal blogs.
  7. 7
    Make goals yearly. Set to improve every year. make career goals say to score 1000 points or make the All-State/Area team.

Method 2
JUCO/Post Graduate Year(s)

  1. 1
    Understand Why. Know what you need to improve while doing your time at either a Junior College or Post-Graduate year. Whether it's to improve academically or with your skills.
  2. 2
    Choose the best fit. Choose a school that will fit your requirements. You should ask these questions before making a decision.
    • Do I wanna be far or close to my home.
    • Will this school help me get my name out?
    • Will this school help me where I need help?

Method 3
Walk On

  1. 1
    This will be tough. Worst case scenario you'll have to walk on to that school. Being a walk on means you'll need to pay the normal price for the school (unless you are eligible for financial aid). Being a walk on also means that you do not have a spot on the team. Meaning you have to earn it in a try out.
  2. 2
    Make the team. You basically have to do the same thing as trying to make the team back in high school. But this time, you have to be at least decent in every part of your game. But most importantly be athletic. If they see you flying all over the court and dunking left and right that gets a lot of attention. Then when they see that you shoot the ball well, they're gotta make a spot for you, hopefully.


A Post-Graduate year is a extra year of high school. In that year you can get more college exposure. You could also reclassify just to hold back a year. These two options do not take any years away from your college eligibility.


A walk-on is not guaranteed a spot on the team and are also not given an athletic scholarship unless earned from past season with the team.

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Categories: Team Sports