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Post by arewethereyet on 25/05/12, 07:22 am

Well the soccer season coming to an end,this is a question
to those parents of ECNL player. What is the REAL cost to
play on an ECNL team??
Did you see a benefit?
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Post by ballhead on 25/05/12, 08:36 am

arewethereyet wrote:Well the soccer season coming to an end,this is a question
to those parents of ECNL player. What is the REAL cost to
play on an ECNL team??
Did you see a benefit?

This question has been answered so many times, its hard to understand why it keeps being asked.

The "REAL" cost is very similar to what it was when playing on a top tier Lake Highlands team. Travel is very much the same. Take out the LHGCL and Premier League fees, ECNL doesn't have them.

Before there was an ECNL, we did 3 or 4 big tournaments a year. In the ECNL we do the same. Tournament fees are actually less for ECNL than they are in most showcases, although when spread across 18 players, the difference isn't all that much. The showcases may, in some cases, be further from home, but we played in Las Vegas, Florida, New Jersey, and California before there was an ECNL.

I think most involved with ECNL teams would tell you that the coaching exposure is outstanding, with 40-60-80 (or more) coaches at each match. Before ECNL, we never saw numbers anywhere close.

Now, if history is any indicator, you'll hear from a number of people that DON'T have ECNL players saying that they can get the same exposure through other avenues, and that they spoke with a "friend" who told them they spent tens of thousands of dollars in travel expenses and that they would never do it again. Oddly, though, we never hear a first hand report from any of those people.

What it is NOT, is a perfect solution for every player. Care must be utilized to make sure you're on the right team, with the right coach. You must understand your dd's place on the team, and have realistic expectations. A player on an ECNL team that rarely gets much time on the field isn't going to garner as much attention as a player getting 30 minutes a half.

If the goal is a college soccer career, there is no better way to get exposure for your dd, but it will still require a significant amount of work from the player and her family to get the benefits. Just being on an ECNL team won't do it. Lots of emails, lots of phone calls, lots of research, and a lot of effort will be required if you expect to reel in a scholarship.
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Post by Guest on 25/05/12, 08:53 am

[quote="ballhead"]
arewethereyet wrote:
If the goal is a college soccer career, there is no better way to get exposure for your dd, but it will still require a significant amount of work from the player and her family to get the benefits. Just being on an ECNL team won't do it. Lots of emails, lots of phone calls, lots of research, and a lot of effort will be required if you expect to reel in a scholarship.


Whats interesting is that this is exactly what was required from a parent BEFORE ECNL. Just being ona top team did nothing for you without work.

It is not for everyone and is not the only avenue to a scholarship if that is what is being sought. It is simply an alternative route to take.

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Post by KSD on 25/05/12, 08:56 am

ballhead wrote:
arewethereyet wrote:Well the soccer season coming to an end,this is a question
to those parents of ECNL player. What is the REAL cost to
play on an ECNL team??
Did you see a benefit?

This question has been answered so many times, its hard to understand why it keeps being asked.

The "REAL" cost is very similar to what it was when playing on a top tier Lake Highlands team. Travel is very much the same. Take out the LHGCL and Premier League fees, ECNL doesn't have them.

Before there was an ECNL, we did 3 or 4 big tournaments a year. In the ECNL we do the same. Tournament fees are actually less for ECNL than they are in most showcases, although when spread across 18 players, the difference isn't all that much. The showcases may, in some cases, be further from home, but we played in Las Vegas, Florida, New Jersey, and California before there was an ECNL.

I think most involved with ECNL teams would tell you that the coaching exposure is outstanding, with 40-60-80 (or more) coaches at each match. Before ECNL, we never saw numbers anywhere close.

Now, if history is any indicator, you'll hear from a number of people that DON'T have ECNL players saying that they can get the same exposure through other avenues, and that they spoke with a "friend" who told them they spent tens of thousands of dollars in travel expenses and that they would never do it again. Oddly, though, we never hear a first hand report from any of those people.

What it is NOT, is a perfect solution for every player. Care must be utilized to make sure you're on the right team, with the right coach. You must understand your dd's place on the team, and have realistic expectations. A player on an ECNL team that rarely gets much time on the field isn't going to garner as much attention as a player getting 30 minutes a half.

If the goal is a college soccer career, there is no better way to get exposure for your dd, but it will still require a significant amount of work from the player and her family to get the benefits. Just being on an ECNL team won't do it. Lots of emails, lots of phone calls, lots of research, and a lot of effort will be required if you expect to reel in a scholarship.

My DD is an '05 so we obviously have several years before any of this comes into play for us... but, I'm curious, do most parents of kids playing LH and ECNL have dreams of scholarships or is it something else? And if your DD does earn a scholarship to a school that is less than ideal, scholastically speaking, what will you do?

And if any of you have DD's in college that played LH or ECNL... would you do anything different if you had the opportunity?
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Post by soccersounder on 25/05/12, 09:13 am

Make no mistake about it!!!

Next year this time, I will let everyone know exactly what the money, time and effort was for ECNL... Very Happy
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Post by socrocks on 25/05/12, 09:16 am

ballhead gives a great explanation. ECNL is not perfect...and it's not right for everyone. If your kid won't get ample playing time, it's not a wise choice.

It seems to me that those that tend to "poo poo" ECNL are those that are not in ECNL. And they seem to justify to themselves that non-participation will still provide viable college options for their girls.

So, if you're really thirsty, you can stand around with your tongue sticking out and hope for rain.....or you can simply drink a glass of water. Which is the easiest means to an end?

If your thirsty dd wants to play soccer in college, get her a glass of water from the ECNL fountain.

PS...Androfan, ECNL is not an "alternate" route, it's the Superhighway. At this point, anything else would be the "alternate" route.
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Post by Guest on 25/05/12, 09:25 am

@Sockrocks... how far back does your involvment in all this go? Ive been involved in this since the '79 age groups were being recruited.

I am not knocking ECNL, in no way. My current one in the meat grinder is years away from that monster, and for all I know may end up on a ECNL roster one day, but I have been around long enough and involved in the entire process to know there is no Superhighway or sure fire thing and may be here now, but be gone by the time my current one gets there.

Every option out there is an alternative to the others. I doubt you are one to just drink up the "flavor of the month" just because your DD is thirsty. Parents have to edjucate themselves about the options and the work that is required in all of the routes that can be traveled. It is a journey, not a sprint and simply setting up a folding chair on an ECNL sideline will guarantee nothing.

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Post by Lawnboy on 25/05/12, 09:31 am

Androfan wrote:@Sockrocks... how far back does your involvment in all this go? Ive been involved in this since the '79 age groups were being recruited.

I am not knocking ECNL, in no way. My current one in the meat grinder is years away from that monster, and for all I know may end up on a ECNL roster one day, but I have been around long enough and involved in the entire process to know there is no Superhighway or sure fire thing and may be here now, but be gone by the time my current one gets there.

Every option out there is an alternative to the others. I doubt you are one to just drink up the "flavor of the month" just because your DD is thirsty. Parents have to edjucate themselves about the options and the work that is required in all of the routes that can be traveled. It is a journey, not a sprint and simply setting up a folding chair on an ECNL sideline will guarantee nothing.

"Parents have to edjucate themselves..."

Oh, the irony.

Once your youngest gets to that point, you will see how radically ECNL has changed the recruiting landscape versus when you went through it with your '79. Then you will see first-hand what Socrocks and so many other parents who are in the thick of it right now are saying.


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Post by Lefty on 25/05/12, 09:34 am

kellersoccerdad wrote:
ballhead wrote:
arewethereyet wrote:Well the soccer season coming to an end,this is a question
to those parents of ECNL player. What is the REAL cost to
play on an ECNL team??
Did you see a benefit?

This question has been answered so many times, its hard to understand why it keeps being asked.

The "REAL" cost is very similar to what it was when playing on a top tier Lake Highlands team. Travel is very much the same. Take out the LHGCL and Premier League fees, ECNL doesn't have them.

Before there was an ECNL, we did 3 or 4 big tournaments a year. In the ECNL we do the same. Tournament fees are actually less for ECNL than they are in most showcases, although when spread across 18 players, the difference isn't all that much. The showcases may, in some cases, be further from home, but we played in Las Vegas, Florida, New Jersey, and California before there was an ECNL.

I think most involved with ECNL teams would tell you that the coaching exposure is outstanding, with 40-60-80 (or more) coaches at each match. Before ECNL, we never saw numbers anywhere close.

Now, if history is any indicator, you'll hear from a number of people that DON'T have ECNL players saying that they can get the same exposure through other avenues, and that they spoke with a "friend" who told them they spent tens of thousands of dollars in travel expenses and that they would never do it again. Oddly, though, we never hear a first hand report from any of those people.

What it is NOT, is a perfect solution for every player. Care must be utilized to make sure you're on the right team, with the right coach. You must understand your dd's place on the team, and have realistic expectations. A player on an ECNL team that rarely gets much time on the field isn't going to garner as much attention as a player getting 30 minutes a half.

If the goal is a college soccer career, there is no better way to get exposure for your dd, but it will still require a significant amount of work from the player and her family to get the benefits. Just being on an ECNL team won't do it. Lots of emails, lots of phone calls, lots of research, and a lot of effort will be required if you expect to reel in a scholarship.

My DD is an '05 so we obviously have several years before any of this comes into play for us... but, I'm curious, do most parents of kids playing LH and ECNL have dreams of scholarships or is it something else? And if your DD does earn a scholarship to a school that is less than ideal, scholastically speaking, what will you do?

And if any of you have DD's in college that played LH or ECNL... would you do anything different if you had the opportunity?

You are asking the right questions. Given that you are asking those questions I would say you probably have a good idea of the answer, however it really depends on your financial situation and what kind of academic $ and need $ she can qualify for at better schools.

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Post by socrocks on 25/05/12, 09:41 am

Androfan...no intention of disrespecting your exposure/experience with the process. But the soccer landscape has changed. What was, was...what is, is.

ECNL is hardly the "flavor of the month." Good or bad, it has completely changed (and will likely continue to be the driving force behind) the face of youth soccer. If anyone believes for 1 second that ECNL is not "hands down" the best route to college soccer, they're sadly misinformed.

As ballhead pointed out, it's not a "slam dunk" just b/c your dd plays ECNL, there is still much work to do.

FYI, my only dd, is a '96.


Last edited by socrocks on 25/05/12, 09:43 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Guest on 25/05/12, 09:42 am

I am fully aware of what ECNL brings to the table. I am involved in this beyond just where my DD is currently at.

I just dont agree with those that state to others that it is the only route one should go or just give up on the whole process.

I also dont agree with those that state it is ungodly expensive and nothing but a money grab.

It is what it is, its a route to consider with many questions to consider for each family before they venture into the water. The same is to be said of any other route to take.

There is no one thing out there that is a sure thing. It all requires money, it all requires work by both the DD and the parents supporting her. A little luck is also required, and the school your DD wants to go to still has to want her.

It is still about the DDs right, and where they want to go and what they want to pursue in life beyond soccer. Last I checked there isnt a professional womens league and NTX hasnt produced a full blown member of the National team since Carla Overbeck, as someone reminded me last night.

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Post by ballhead on 25/05/12, 09:46 am

Androfan wrote:@Sockrocks... how far back does your involvment in all this go? Ive been involved in this since the '79 age groups were being recruited.

I am not knocking ECNL, in no way. My current one in the meat grinder is years away from that monster, and for all I know may end up on a ECNL roster one day, but I have been around long enough and involved in the entire process to know there is no Superhighway or sure fire thing and may be here now, but be gone by the time my current one gets there.

Every option out there is an alternative to the others. I doubt you are one to just drink up the "flavor of the month" just because your DD is thirsty. Parents have to edjucate themselves about the options and the work that is required in all of the routes that can be traveled. It is a journey, not a sprint and simply setting up a folding chair on an ECNL sideline will guarantee nothing.

Another alternative would be just to sit home and do nothing, and wait for the offers to come pouring in. Not necessarily a good alternative, but an alternative, nonetheless.

ECNL is far more than a "flavor of the month". It has changed the entire college recruiting landscape from both the school side and the player side. No, its not a "sure fire" thing, but it does create a significant advantage over any of the other alternatives when approached properly.
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Post by harry7405 on 25/05/12, 10:04 am

ECNL will continue to evolve and change the way coaches recruit and travel. There is still hope for our non-ECNL DD's. Lots of letter's calling and emails not to mention bringing A game to showcases. 96 has drawn some serious interest from regional D1 schools. Will be attending a few camps this summer to help build a relationship. We hope she stays regionally to attend her games but long road to go. Its eventually up to your DD and her abilities that will determine the next level.

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Post by Guest on 25/05/12, 10:07 am

ballhead wrote:
Androfan wrote:@Sockrocks... how far back does your involvment in all this go? Ive been involved in this since the '79 age groups were being recruited.

I am not knocking ECNL, in no way. My current one in the meat grinder is years away from that monster, and for all I know may end up on a ECNL roster one day, but I have been around long enough and involved in the entire process to know there is no Superhighway or sure fire thing and may be here now, but be gone by the time my current one gets there.

Every option out there is an alternative to the others. I doubt you are one to just drink up the "flavor of the month" just because your DD is thirsty. Parents have to edjucate themselves about the options and the work that is required in all of the routes that can be traveled. It is a journey, not a sprint and simply setting up a folding chair on an ECNL sideline will guarantee nothing.

Another alternative would be just to sit home and do nothing, and wait for the offers to come pouring in. Not necessarily a good alternative, but an alternative, nonetheless.

ECNL is far more than a "flavor of the month". It has changed the entire college recruiting landscape from both the school side and the player side. No, its not a "sure fire" thing, but it does create a significant advantage over any of the other alternatives when approached properly.

Agreed. It does have an advantage, but it still has to be a fit, and if it is not there are other ways.

In the end its all fun to watch and be a part of no matter the path traveled. Enjoy the journey with your DDs.

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Post by Guest on 25/05/12, 10:31 am

socrocks wrote:Androfan...no intention of disrespecting your exposure/experience with the process. But the soccer landscape has changed. What was, was...what is, is.

ECNL is hardly the "flavor of the month." Good or bad, it has completely changed (and will likely continue to be the driving force behind) the face of youth soccer. If anyone believes for 1 second that ECNL is not "hands down" the best route to college soccer, they're sadly misinformed.

As ballhead pointed out, it's not a "slam dunk" just b/c your dd plays ECNL, there is still much work to do.

FYI, my only dd, is a '96.

No offense taken. We all have our opinions. A good discussion is what I need as I wait for this work day to end.

Im headed to USA v Brasil next week so Im on pins and needles for this week to end already.. flight heads out Sunday and Sunday cant get here quick enough!!

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Post by KatCon on 25/05/12, 10:32 am

If you are paying for soccer just so your dd can go to college on a scholarship you should look at the money spent from academy until graduation. You could have just saved up all of that and paid for a decent education. Just sayin! Most are in it for the wrong reasons.
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Post by MoveYourFeet on 25/05/12, 11:00 am

KatCon wrote:If you are paying for soccer just so your dd can go to college on a scholarship you should look at the money spent from academy until graduation. You could have just saved up all of that and paid for a decent education. Just sayin! Most are in it for the wrong reasons.


Let's say you spend $4,000 a year on soccer. Heck, let's move it to a cool $5,000 a year.
Multiply that by 8 years.

Please list the schools that will give you a decent education for $40,000 over 4 years.

Soccer is expensive, but wait until that kid goes to college for four years with no scholarship.
I'm hoping for a little help with that, academically and/or athletically.
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Post by KatCon on 25/05/12, 11:26 am

MoveYourFeet wrote:
KatCon wrote:If you are paying for soccer just so your dd can go to college on a scholarship you should look at the money spent from academy until graduation. You could have just saved up all of that and paid for a decent education. Just sayin! Most are in it for the wrong reasons.


Let's say you spend $4,000 a year on soccer. Heck, let's move it to a cool $5,000 a year.
Multiply that by 8 years.

Please list the schools that will give you a decent education for $40,000 over 4 years.

Soccer is expensive, but wait until that kid goes to college for four years with no scholarship.
I'm hoping for a little help with that, academically and/or athletically.

And how much do you think a scholarship is going to pay exactly? If you think you are getting a full ride you are crazy.
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Post by Lefty on 25/05/12, 11:31 am

MoveYourFeet wrote:
KatCon wrote:If you are paying for soccer just so your dd can go to college on a scholarship you should look at the money spent from academy until graduation. You could have just saved up all of that and paid for a decent education. Just sayin! Most are in it for the wrong reasons.


Let's say you spend $4,000 a year on soccer. Heck, let's move it to a cool $5,000 a year.
Multiply that by 8 years.

Please list the schools that will give you a decent education for $40,000 over 4 years.
Soccer is expensive, but wait until that kid goes to college for four years with no scholarship.
I'm hoping for a little help with that, academically and/or athletically.

A whole bunch depending on grades/test scores and/or need.

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Post by Justwatchin98 on 25/05/12, 11:36 am

Okay, lets get back to the topic...this really is important information to some of us that want to know especially if you don't have a clue what it truly costs for a team that was already playing premier and traveled a lot. Personal experience for me recently, my dd played on a premier team and actually did one out of state tournament and the cost was still less than $3000. Did we cover in fundraising, yes and how much, don't really know or can't remember exactly...but it wasn't that much more. So, it would be helpful for you guys to put some actual numbers out there for us to work with. Thanks.

Costs? Age Group?

D'Feeters $
Solar $
FC Dallas $
Sting $
Dallas Txns $
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Post by socrocks on 25/05/12, 12:07 pm

I doubt many get onto the treadmill (we call youth soccer) day one, with the vision of soccer paying their kid's way thru college. I don't think many view it as a college savings plan. The time/money commitment sort of sneaks up on us though. But the focus of this discussion seems to be the value of ECNL towards the end goal of playing in college. And for most of those that play ECNL, playing in college is (or should be) the objective. Otherwise, don't play ECNL.

KatCon, don't say the "full rides" don't happen...they do. And "full rides" also happen without any supplementation from the academic side. Does everyone get them? No. Are these deals rare? I'd say not. Does your kid have a better shot getting closer to a "full ride" if their grades are strong? Absolutely.

For those that don't know...NCAA D1 schools are allotted 14 scholarships per year. The coach has the ability to parcel those out, as he/she see fit. So naturally, if there are 20-28 kids on the roster, everyone won't be getting a 100% scholarship from the athletics side. But many of those will get a boost from the academic side (a lesser known perk is that out of state tuition can sometimes be waived).

What seems to happen is that a college coach will identify his/her key recruit(s) for each class and will offer them a 100% (or near 100%) ride, often with no academic strings attached. These recruits tend to get identified early and make verbal commitments early (usually by late spring of sophomore year). From there the coaches will fill in their spots with 50-60% deals, sometimes supplemented with academic dollars.

Sending your kid away for 4 yrs will cost $80k - $100k for in-state tuition. Privates, as much as $200k for 4 yrs. Any portion of those costs that can be recovered thru soccer/academics is windfall, right? The youth soccer dollars have already been spent...they're gone. Even a 50% ride on an $80k degree is nothing to sneeze at. Not a bad payback for everything that was put into the process, up to this point.

I'll reiterate though, in this day and age, your process will be much easier if you're on an ECNL roster.
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Post by KatCon on 25/05/12, 12:16 pm

Soc, great input and insight.
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Post by ballhead on 25/05/12, 12:19 pm

socrocks wrote:I doubt many get onto the treadmill (we call youth soccer) day one, with the vision of soccer paying their kid's way thru college. I don't think many view it as a college savings plan. The time/money commitment sort of sneaks up on us though. But the focus of this discussion seems to be the value of ECNL towards the end goal of playing in college. And for most of those that play ECNL, playing in college is (or should be) the objective. Otherwise, don't play ECNL.

KatCon, don't say the "full rides" don't happen...they do. And "full rides" also happen without any supplementation from the academic side. Does everyone get them? No. Are these deals rare? I'd say not. Does your kid have a better shot getting closer to a "full ride" if their grades are strong? Absolutely.

For those that don't know...NCAA D1 schools are allotted 14 scholarships per year. The coach has the ability to parcel those out, as he/she see fit. So naturally, if there are 20-28 kids on the roster, everyone won't be getting a 100% scholarship from the athletics side. But many of those will get a boost from the academic side (a lesser known perk is that out of state tuition can sometimes be waived).

What seems to happen is that a college coach will identify his/her key recruit(s) for each class and will offer them a 100% (or near 100%) ride, often with no academic strings attached. These recruits tend to get identified early and make verbal commitments early (usually by late spring of sophomore year). From there the coaches will fill in their spots with 50-60% deals, sometimes supplemented with academic dollars.

Sending your kid away for 4 yrs will cost $80k - $100k for in-state tuition. Privates, as much as $200k for 4 yrs. Any portion of those costs that can be recovered thru soccer/academics is windfall, right? The youth soccer dollars have already been spent...they're gone. Even a 50% ride on an $80k degree is nothing to sneeze at. Not a bad payback for everything that was put into the process, up to this point.

I'll reiterate though, in this day and age, your process will be much easier if you're on an ECNL roster.

You're spot on in all respects. I know of a number of players that received scholarships in excess of 80%. In truth, I was expecting much much less for my dd, based on hearing for years that there are no full rides, and was pleasantly surprised that one of her offers was in excess of 90%.

All that said, however, we have received our money's worth based on the life experiences she's learned, the friends she made, and the trouble she didn't have time to get into.

Anything offered would have been considered a windfall. We know where she's going, she's happy about it, and its all been a great experience.

Its all good!
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Post by arewethereyet on 25/05/12, 02:20 pm

BUMP
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Post by Settle It on 25/05/12, 03:19 pm

Ballhead and Socrocks, great input.

My oldest DD went to college on a soccer scholarship just before ECNL started in N. Texas. Thankfully, she had fantastic grades and graduated in the top 2% of her class of 700. Her academic money is much higher than the athletic money. Soccer scholarships (or any athletic scholarships) are re-negotiated every year. The coach may give your daughter $10K the first year to bring her in and if she doesn't perform, the next year she may get $5k or nothing, just a spot on the team. It's important to note D3 schools don't offer any athletic money.

Make sure when you negotiate with the coach you are NOT talking %. There are four things you have to negotiate for:

1. Tuition (make sure you get in-state if you are looking at an out of state school. It's usually very easy to set up and the coaches will help/guide you).
2. Housing
3. Meal plan
4. Books

The disappointing thing about all of this is only 30 - 35% go back their second year with athletic money. There is very little time for anything outside of classes and soccer in the fall term. Spring is a little easier but there is some travel for friendlies and exhibition games. Out of my daughter's signing class of 10, 6 will not return. Out of the 4 girls that came from Texas, only two are returning. Mine is going back with some with very valuable life lessons she learned.

Good luck to all!
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