One of the best ways to open up doors using sport, is to play college level soccer in the USA. The USA college sports system is the feeder to it’s national leagues, and as such, talented athletes enter the college system to develop their athletic and sporting talent to the highest level possible pre-professional, whilst earning a Bachelor’s Degree.
South African athlete Dillon du Toit accepted a scholarship at Mercer County Community College in 2022, read on to hear his first-hand experience:
“The experience up until now has been nothing short of life changing. Having never left home for more than a week it has been 3 months and I don’t regret taking the leap of faith for a single second.
Academically, I have coped well with the workload. The content is more complex but not impossible, the biggest challenge has been to consistently have the discipline to get work done and get it in on time where no one is checking up on you. Consistency is key in showing up to class everyday and making sure your work is up to standard.
The social aspect has been phenomenal, living with my roomates has created a family like relationship between us and allowed us to grow closer as a team. The team becomes your new family, helping you find your feet, doing homework late at night with you. You will meet so many new people and have to deal with such a wide range of personalities which you must navigate. I have learnt hard lessons I cannot forget and made memories I will always treasure and remember. An amazing cultural experience if you’re up for a challenge.
Sporting aspect, the physical requirements in the USA are often more focused on rather than footballing ability. Technical ability is expected to be at a high level when you get here therefore fitness and strength are worked on regularly and rigorously. The football level is high as everyone is just as big, just as strong as you, so what separates you is your ability to play under high pressure. The trainings are long and intense, requiring an obsession with the sport and not just an enjoyment for it. You become as close to a professional footballer as you can get without signing a contract. Early morning gym, school, training, lifting session and recovery before you get home. You will play on a heavy schedule of a game every 2/3 days during season while training. You are responsible for your own recovery and body and will get injured if you do not take care of yourself. The coaches and the college are investing in you and effort and professionalism is what they expect in return.
You will be driven to be exceptional as everyone is good. It is a constant fight to keep your position in the team but you learn to relish the opportunity to perform for your team.”
Why not send us a contact form, if you are interested in pursuing an Athletic Scholarship in the USA.