When to contact ALO?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by TexasSoccerMom, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    First time posting but I have been on here reading a lot. This site is a great wealth of information!

    When should we advise our son to make his initial contact and introduce himself to his ALO? He is a sophomore in high school.

    Thanks in advance for any guidance! This is our first child to send off to college so everything is new to us. :)
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2015
    Momof4 likes this.
  2. baileydb

    baileydb Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2014
    Messages:
    654
    Likes Received:
    588
    I first contacted my ALO when I was a Sophomore. I e-mailed him introducing myself and telling him my qualifications. Then he set up a meeting with my parents and me. Not all ALO's are like that, but some are. I don't think it hurts to at least contact your ALO now and get on his/her radar. But it isn't necessary to do so until this time next year for your DS.
     
  3. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    Thanks for your reply. We weren't sure. DS is interested in possibly playing soccer for the academy (He has played club for past 8 years and 2 years for high school team.) We are sending him to AFA soccer camp this summer to have a chance to introduce himself to the coaches. DH and I also are sending him to afa soccer camp because we want him to get an opportunity to visit campus, stay in the dorms etc... before continuing on this journey.
     
    RogersCO'19 likes this.
  4. wildblueyonder

    wildblueyonder USAFA '19

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2015
    Messages:
    339
    Likes Received:
    380
    Another thing you can do (in addition to contacting your ALO) is contact your USAFA Admissions Counselor. He/she will be able to give you specific advice on how to prepare academically, what the admissions board looks for in candidates, and a bunch of other tips and helpful information. I met with my counselor a few years ago when I visited USAFA and he was willing to set up a private appointment with me. :eek3: He has helped me a great deal since I started my application.

    A lot of the questions you will have about preparation could also be answered by your ALO, but it's good to at least contact your admissions counselor now, since you may be talking to him/her much more often once you begin the application process.

    It sounds like your DS is preparing early, which is a great thing. If he works hard and keeps his grades up, he'll be able to make a huge splash with his application when the time comes! :thumb:
     
  5. baileydb

    baileydb Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2014
    Messages:
    654
    Likes Received:
    588
    Great idea! I was at Summer Seminar during one of the sports camps and it seemed like the kids were having a fabulous time! I'm sure he'll have a blast!
     
    RogersCO'19 likes this.
  6. Usafamom2016

    Usafamom2016 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2012
    Messages:
    315
    Likes Received:
    74
    If your son is interested in being recruited for soccer, he needs to contact the soccer coach.
     
    TexasSoccerMom and RogersCO'19 like this.
  7. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    DS intends on contacting coach and introducing himself prior to attending camp. He has already written many drafts of the email/letter and created several different soccer resumes. He plans on sending that a few weeks before arriving camp. :)
     
    RogersCO'19 likes this.
  8. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    4,963
    Likes Received:
    872
    If you go to the academy athletic website, there is an online self notification page where you can contact the athletic department and let them know of your interest I playing sports.

    Just an fyi. Don't be shocked if the coaches don't reply as often or as detailed as you like. Even though this is the academy, the Athletics are D1 and have many NCAA rules and regulations. The same as all D1 schools. There's a fine line when recruiting athletes. Use the website and meet them at the camps.
     
    USAFA83GradWife likes this.
  9. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    Yes, the coaches are not allowed to initiate contact or respond until junior year I believe. I think I have read the NCAA rules correctly. Potential athletes can email but no response can be given. However my son's coaches can contact on his behalf. First experience with college athletic recruiting too. We are learning! Apparently service academies have slightly different guidelines with athletic recruiting.

    Only providing coaches with DS information showing interest, giving his GPA, accomplishments, psat, leadership honors , references and background that will show he will be a qualified applicant who is meeting the academy standard criteria to earn an appointment. Only goal is to get him "on the radar" as a potential athlete.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2015
  10. MJP

    MJP Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    322
    Likes Received:
    165
    You probably know this, but putting together a short video-3-6 mins max with a screen at the beginning that details his resume and then video clips of him that outline some of his key soccer skills goes a long way. There are plenty of services that will charge you for this. DS made his own for lacrosse in about two hours and sent it out to all the coaches he was interested in talking with. It was well received.

    He's putting together another this year as a follow-up for his senior year.

    Good luck
     
    TexasSoccerMom likes this.
  11. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
     
  12. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    4,963
    Likes Received:
    872
    Something else you can do for all those interested in academy IC athletics. Once you've gone to the athletics website and filled out the online questionnaire and let the coaches know you're interested, you'll usually get an email back from one of the coaches. If not, look up their name and email on the athletics website. Send them an email with a LOT of HOT-Links that they can simply CLICK. Do their homework for them. Put in all the links to newspaper articles, online articles, tv references, etc. of your achievements. E.g. Most sports has a writeup online in the local papers of the "Box scores" or similar the day after the match. If your name is mentioned in the articles because of points scored or some spectacular play, link that to the coaches in an email. Don't send them endless emails with a link or two each. Send them 1 email with the 5, 10, 15, 20 etc. links that mention your name. Points, defence, time, state champion, etc. For you football players; articles about "Play it smart". Basically, anything link that mentions your name and the sport. Even if it's only your small online school newspaper. Not everyone lives in a large city with state wide or national coverage. The athletic department, teams, and coaches have a lot of interested people. Recruiting season sucks. Especially trying to validate if you're actually worth a crap as an athlete. It doesn't say much if you're BEST football player on the "Wheatland Wyoming High School Team". But if you happen to have one the state championship, all conference/all state, Gatorade Player of the year, or a lot of newspaper and online articles about your athletics and academics, that will definitely mean something.

    Remember; as many student athletes that the academy recruits and make into cadets, there's twice as many or more that they turn down. Many MUCH BETTER athletes than any of you. But they don't meet the academic requirements or the coach doesn't believe the individual can make it through the academy and become a trained officer. Believe it or not, in the end, our coaches know that you are being trained to be a Military leader. An air force officer. I've seen a LOT of athletes applying to the academy get turned down. Even though they were some of the BEST athletes applying. So make sure when you speak of your athletic accomplishments and send in all those hot-links; try to include some that mention being on the honor roll, NHS, IB Program, or any other academic or community accomplishments you have.
     
    TexasSoccerMom likes this.
  13. MJP

    MJP Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    322
    Likes Received:
    165
    Christcorp +1
    DS' video was a youtube video and he emailed the link to the coaches to simply click on.
    In his front page, there were references to his academics, awards, eagle scout rank, etc, height, weight, GPA, Class rank SAT...

    Tried to give them a quick look to garner interest and then followed with an email with resume and more detail.

    Even asked a top tier D1 LAX coach for advice on making it better and he was more than helpful.

    Exciting times and lots of fun. Good Luck but like CC said above, academics first, athletics second.
     
    TexasSoccerMom likes this.
  14. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    Great info! He is making a one page resume with his info academic as well as athletic.

    If he stays on track DS is appears competitive for an appointment. 4.5/4.0 GPA in all PreAP/AP courses, psat scores in national merit scholar range, perfect math score, not sure of his class rank. We are at a 6A Texas high school where sports are extremely competitive. DS made team freshman year. Varsity sophomore year. He is club team captain. Hoby leadership candidate for sophomore class, mission trips, national honor society.

    Academics come first always!
     
  15. RDG143

    RDG143 Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2014
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    19
    My DS is a HS senior/USAFA candidate, soccer player from Texas. We have been to the camps, SS, etc. If you would like, DM me and I can give you as much info as you would like. By no means an expert but we are deep into the process and would be glad to help or share our experience.
     
  16. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
     
  17. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    Not sure what I just did. Using the App on my phone.

    Yes! I would love and appreciate any advice or insight. Best of luck to your son.
     
  18. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2007
    Messages:
    2,580
    Likes Received:
    800
    Ahh, D1 athletics, USAFA admissions, ALOs.... the whole catastrophe!

    Christcorp knows the scoop (as do others).

    One thing I like to remind PARENTS: Your child may be the #1 soccer player, fencer, gymnast, etc. in your area. Congratulations. The commitment of time, talent, $$$ (sports can get costly!) on your part and on your child's is commendable. But do remember, USAFA is not around to get your child into the NFL or NBA, nor does it pass out "athletic scholarships." It's purpose is to make Air Force officers. If your child is not seeking that end game, perhaps a different college situation is desirable.

    Just a reminder, not a bubble burster.
     
  19. baileydb

    baileydb Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2014
    Messages:
    654
    Likes Received:
    588
    Just wanted to real quick say-- you and your DS sound amazing! Congrats to you for raising such an awesome kid and to him for being such a hard worker!
     
    TexasSoccerMom likes this.
  20. TexasSoccerMom

    TexasSoccerMom Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    44
    Thanks all. DS is well aware that this is a service academy. DH had an appointment to USAFA in 1993. He ended up with a knee injury which lead to surgery from high school sports spring of senior year. So no USAFA for him. I applaud my DH because he is maintaining such composure, remaining impartial and giving no influence at his son going after an appointment. DH is only speaking up and stressing the importance of making sure a firm solid plan B is in place.

    I was just asking questions about process. DS is not seeking a service academy as the gateway to major league soccer.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015

Share This Page