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Copa In College November 2023

Evan Vasquez

College Name: Williams College

Copa Team Name : USL Academy | B03 Black.

Position: Central Attacking Midfielder

Advice to current players wanting to play college soccer:

A piece of advice I would give to players wanting to play college soccer is enjoy the recruiting process and don’t let it stress you out, but you have to be willing to put in the extra work. What I mean by “extra work” is doing the things others aren’t doing to give you that extra edge. Nowadays there are so many good soccer players. The question you may ask is, “What makes a player look more marketable to college coaches?” The biggest factor to this is your academics. I stress that you focus on your academics because the first thing many of these college coaches look at in your emails will be your GPA. Your grades will show these coaches discipline and accountability off the field. Another important factor is making a strong highlight reel, this way coaches can get a quick glimpse of you and you can peak their interest. I recommend including your GPA, test scores, and soccer background in the beginning of the video. Soccer background can include your height, weight and positions played. I also recommend labeling the opponents you play in each clip of your reel to show the competition you are playing against. These little things can all push you to the top of a recruiting list. But, the most important thing in a recruit is how bad they want it. You need to be reaching out consistently to these coaches and sending them email after email. It may seem like you are annoying them, but you are not! These coaches get emails 24/7. I personally, ended up sending around 250 emails by the end of my recruiting process. These emails should be quick and effective as coaches will not want to read an essay on you. Now, this all may seem stressful, but when you are in the recruiting process people want you and you have to realize that. These coaches will call you with interest and don’t feel that you are being interviewed because you need to realize you are actually interviewing the coach. What can they offer me? Do I like the program? Do I like the academics, the campus, etc? Enjoy the process!

What did you learn at FC Copa that has helped you in college:

FC Copa taught me that the little things matter. From lining up our bags behind the bench, to always matching on and off the field, to sitting down with the team in meetings or dinners to better our relationships. Everything had a purpose at FC Copa. We never did something just because it felt right, we did it because there was a meaning behind it. This influenced my decision on where I wanted to play in college because I wanted to be in a professional environment with a group of people who genuinely care about me. I was able to find that here at Williams College, but I would have had no idea to even look for that type of culture if I hadn;t played with FC Copa. FC Copa taught me how to be accountable for myself, be a good teammate, and to love the grind in the beautiful sport. Finally, I want to mention something that has stuck with me since my last game at FC Copa. If there is one thing you should take away from everything I have said it is this right here. It was the last game with my club team and we had just gotten knocked out of states. Coach Roberto called us into a huddle and we all took a moment. Roberto looked up and stated he had three things to tell us before we all parted ways. One, never feel sorry for yourself. Two, you must always work hard. Most importantly three, you have to love what you do. We all said our final goodbyes and Roberto looked at me and said, “Good things happen to good people.” I smiled and said my farewells. This lesson forever stuck with me and I hope is passed on throughout the club for many years to come. As these factors are what make FC Copa.

Caroline Rebele

College Name: The College Of New Jersey

Copa Team Name : G02 Black.

Position: Center Back

Advice to current players wanting to play college soccer:

My first piece of advice to current players looking to play collegiate soccer would be to start the recruiting process early. You want to be able to build good connections with multiple schools, and the whole process takes time to unfold. I began in my sophomore year of high school, and it took me until my fall of senior year to commit. This takes me to my next point. Don’t give up on the recruiting process. When I began narrowing down my schools, TCNJ was still on my list, even though they had not watched me play yet or had been in contact with me. This is where I began using my connections, and I eventually got to where I hoped I would be. It’s essential to make use of your coaches; they will help you and be your biggest advocates through this process. The college soccer recruitment process can be unpredictable, so you have to stick with your gut and your hopes. Find connections and use them, but always be patient. My last piece of advice would be to research and visit as many schools as you can. It’s important to look for a school that would fit you academically, socially, and athletically. You want to make sure that you feel comfortable and at home in a place you are going to spend your next four years at.

What did you learn at FC Copa that has helped you in college:

FC Copa and their coaches taught me several lessons that have helped me in college. The first is that academics come before sports. There will be times that you have to miss practice because of a class, or have to complete homework or study on the away trips. Your career will set you up for a successful future, and sometimes that has to come before soccer. However, time management is also an important factor in balancing academics and athletics, and this is another concept I learned from Copa. Whether you are playing a sport in college or not, you are going to be busy with schoolwork and studying. With the addition of playing on a team, you will be even more busy. If you are planning to play collegiate soccer or any sports, practice your time management skills in high school first. Knowing when you can sleep, when to complete homework, when you have meetings, when to eat, etc is vital to staying on track. The last, and one of the most important things that I learned from Copa was that your team is your family. Your teammates and coaches will have your back no matter what as long as you have theirs. You will be practicing with them everyday, going to film with them, living with them, etc. Know who you can trust and rely on. They will be your family. I hope the future collegiate soccer players who are currently at FC Copa enjoy their collegiate recruiting experience and take these lessons and hopes with them to grow.

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