The USA Today recently had an article talking about how the best recruits in the country do not always end up being the most productive at the college level. Having college coaches all over the country offering you, fans hoping that you will come to their school, and getting high reviews from recruiting experts from Scout, Rivals, ESPN is great but it does not mean you are going to be a sure fire NFL draft pick.
In a lot of cases though, the top rated recruits do have more tools to be able to get to the next level. Their size, speed, strength, and things of that nature after being fine tuned by college coaches could be exactly what NFL scouts want down the road. But it doesn’t always work that way. The article I mentioned above specifically talks about Penn State and their recruits, both with high and low rankings.
The two players that were often mentioned in the article were wide receivers One walked on and another was a grayshirt recruit, which basically means they were not expected to be among the top players on team. Each would be great if they add depth but little was likely expected out of them.
Work harder than anyone else:
While hard work will not make a terrible athlete better than one of the best in the country, if there are two comparable athletes and one works harder, which one do you think will see the field first? Going back to another quote, think about this one. And it is among my favorite all time quotes: “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”
Don’t take anything for granted:
Sometimes when recruits are highly rated, they expect the starting position to be handed to them and that they don’t have to worry about much else. They have been handed things all of their life so why should it stop now? As an underrated recruit, do not take anything for granted. Don’t take the opportunity to walk on or potential to earn a scholarship for granted. Keep it in mind during your workouts that you have something to prove.
Play with a chip on your shoulder:
When you are on the field, play with a chip on your shoulder. Try to prove to the coaching staff that you deserve a scholarship offer. While you will have to put a staggering amount of time in, remember that the time you are putting in is for something you love.
Avoid off the field problems:
The less problems you have off the field, the better chances you avoid going into the doghouse. Just stay out of trouble.
Have success in the classroom:
While this may not get you on the field, having success in the classroom will help you overall. Maybe you never get that scholarship but are able to graduate with a 3.5 GPA.