Division III is a great option for playing lacrosse after high school. The division is full of national championship contenders with plenty of history. There are players in both the Premier Lacrosse League and National Lacrosse League that played their college ball at the Division III level.
These schools also offer a lot in the way of academics to help players after college.
So if you decide that Division III lacrosse is the way to go, you probably have questions about the process. As with all college recruiting, you want to make sure you stay atop the rules and not make any mistakes.
So, how does Division III lacrosse recruiting work?
When compared to Division I recruiting, Division III’s rules are more relaxed, giving both coaches and recruits more flexibility in how the process goes. Schools can send recruiting materials at any time, rather than waiting for September 1st of the prospective player’s junior year.
Division III coaches do not have any restriction on phone calls with prospective students. Student-athletes are not restricted on how many unofficial visits they can make with Division III schools, and they can start making official visits January 1st of their junior year. Student-athletes and coaches can make contact off-campus once the athlete’s sophomore season is complete.
So what does that all mean? It means you can find out what schools have interest in you as a player early on. You can also have a higher degree of contact with coaches and schools at the Division III level than at a higher level.
Does Division III lacrosse offer athletic scholarships?
However, one of the key differences in the recruiting process for playing Division III lacrosse is that you will not be offered an athletic scholarship. All but five NCAA Division III schools are not allowed to provide athletic scholarships at all. The five that do are for specific sports only, and those sports compete at the Division I level anyways.
However, the NCAA reports that about 75 percent of student-athletes at the Division III level do receive financial aid based on merit or need. So while you won’t get a free ride athletic scholarship to a Division III school, there are other avenues to help with college expenses while you play lacrosse.
How to gain interest from Division III lacrosse coaches?
If you are looking to get recruited for playing Division III lacrosse, there are specific lacrosse camps throughout the country, including the D3 Lacrosse Showcase in the northeast.
It caters to both girls and boys looking to continue their playing careers. A number of college coaches come and watch the events, so it’s another way to get in front of prospective coaches that you want to play for.
Is it easy to find a spot on a Division III Lacrosse roster?
Division III offers plenty of opportunities, because there are more teams at this level than any other single level in the NCAA. There are 248 schools with a men’s lacrosse team and 298 schools with a women’s lacrosse team.
While the dream may be to play at the highest level of college lacrosse, you will find plenty of opportunity to play college lacrosse at the Division III level and perhaps continue on with a professional career. Rochester Institute of Technology won the 2021 national championship, their first ever.
However, they have produced professional players before that in recent years, such as Jordan MacIntosh and Eli Salama in the Premier Lacrosse League and Kyle Killen and Ryan Lee in the National Lacrosse League.