To get the opportunity to play college soccer, you need to be seen as a youth player playing against the best. Coaches want to see the best against the best, because it is the only way to get an accurate assessment of performance and potential.
The ECNL operates the 6 biggest National Showcase Events in the country. Each showcase attracts coaches from over 200 schools across the country - from every region, and from every level. The only teams that play in these events are ECNL teams. It is the best against the best, in the most prominent showcase environment in the country.
To step on a college soccer field, you need to continue your development until the day you step onto the college campus. That means playing every day with and against the best.
The ECNL includes the top 73 female soccer clubs in the country. Most of these clubs do not play any games outside of the ECNL, and those that do do so exceptionally sporadically. The ECNL brings the top players, into the top clubs, and puts them into the top competition. Training and competing in that environment is the best way to prepare for a successful collegiate career. Players from ECNL clubs constitute the majority of almost every US Soccer youth national team.
As an example of the exposure provided to our players, the following colleges attended at least one game of last year’s Stars U16 ECNL team vs PDA at the ECNL Championships in Waukegan, Illinois:
Boston University, Clark University, Colorado College, Duke University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Iowa State University, Liberty University, Loyola University, Michigan State University, Northwestern University, Ohio University, Penn State University, Samford, San Jose State University, St. John’s University, Stony Brook University, Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Texas Tech University, UCLA, University of Cincinnati, University of Dayton, University of Illinois, Kansas University, University of Kentucky, Louisville University, University of Massachusetts, University of Miami, University of Miami - Ohio, University of Oklahoma, University of Pittsburgh, University of South Carolina, University of Texas, University of Wisconsin - Madison, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, and Vanderbilt University.
Colleges in Their Own Words - The ECNL and College Recruiting
Texas State University Coach Kat Conner: “We [college coaches] kind of chase the ECNL events around.”
University of Michigan Coach Greg Ryan: “You’ve got the best players here, in the top league, in ECNL.”
Northwestern University Coach Michael Moynihan: “The ECNL, it is kind of the cream of the crop. When you see kids here, you know they are competing at a high level, against other high-level kids …”
University of Notre Dame and US U-23 National Team Coach Randy Waldrum: “the dynamics of recruiting have really changed in the last 2-3 years … bringing all the top clubs together has really changed the dynamics of recruiting.”