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Play in the USA

Posted by devo on July 14, 2009

I do not have any personal dealings with LZ Sport, but they have been recommended to me by one of devo’s overseas correspondents. So, if you are interested in a scholarship in the USA, give them a try.

17 Responses to “Play in the USA”

  1. Alexis said

    For what it is worth, having spent some time over there, and having friends who coach teams at a number of levels in NCAA, I’m happy to provide advice if people have any questions, particularly on the women’s side.

  2. Yankee Boy said

    To be completely honest I would NOT be involving myself with this group. They are European which would make me think that they probably aren’t as up on the NCAA rules as they may tell you. Are they agents? If they are then that is a big no-no, in fact it is illegal for athletes entering the NCAA Arena to have an agent. What do they charge?
    There are so many Australians with a far greater knowledge than this lot who are in the US or in Australia that can help, ask them first before even thinking about tis group.

    • devo said

      I get ongoing inquiries about going to the USA. I refer those people on to people here in Aus who have experience of the system. I’ve now added Alexis to that group.;-)

      As I said in the post, I have no personal experience with the group, but they were recommended by a person whose thoughts I respect.

      I also get several requests for info from USA coaches each year.

      There is definately the need here in Aus for someone to be a “contact point” for all things US College. A nice little project for someone with more expertise in this area than me.

    • Ana LZ Sport said

      Hello Yankee Boy,

      My name is Ana Matijasevic, I manage LZ Sport in countries such as France, Serbia, Croatia, Finland and other countries. I would like to introduce our company to you and the other participants of this conversation so you guys can maybe understand what it is we do a little better.

      We have been running LZ Sport since 2002 out of Europe, you are correct on that. This is where we happen to be from and our goal is to help as many athletes from all over the world obtain athletic scholarships. Me and most of our employees have studied in the USA and obtain athletic scholarships to play various sports. So we are very familiar with the whole system. This was personally the best experience of my life and I truly hope as many people can get the same opportunity as I did. Also, let me tell you that having played for 4 years there I am very familiar with all NCAA rules and follow them very closely. Moreover, we have sent over 250 student-athletes to the USA already so we are very knowledgeable about NCAA rules and the US college system in general.

      I would like to clarify one thing to you and all the participants of this conversation: we are not agents AT ALL and as you said that would be totally forbidden by the NCAA. We are a company that provides services to athletes that would like to obtain athletic scholarships to go study in the USA. More particularly, we want to send WOMEN VOLLEYBALL PLAYERS that are not elite level as Devo said. There is a great need for women volleyball players in the US since every team has about 10 to 12 FULL athletic scholarships that we hope Division 2 or 3 (second tier) players from Australia could fill. These scholarships are roughly around $130 000 over 4 years. A full athletic scholarship covers the cost of education, books, apartment, and food.

      I come across a lot of kids that have tried to obtain a scholarship to go play in the US. A lot of them come to me when they realize they have underestimated the difficulty of this task or have given up. This is why I think an Australian volleyball player could use our service:

      – We have a great network of over 500 volleyball coaches in the NCAA
      – We have sent over 250 student-athletes already so we have great experience with the system and NCAA rules in general
      – We also take care of all the administrative work such as university application, NCAA sign-up and clearance, visas while constantly assisting our clients in whatever they need until and after they leave to the USA.

      Plus we give a great guaranty: if we do not find a scholarship, the client gets their money back.

      I hope this post answers to your questions and concerns regarding our company and the service we offer. If you or anybody else has additional questions please feel free to post them here and I would be happy to address them.

      You can also check our website at http://www.lzsport.com. We have a new great website coming up very shortly which would have a lot more in depth info but this is a great start to anybody that is looking at or thinking of obtaining an athletic scholarship in the USA. It also has a bunch of testimonial stories of past clients and supporters of our clients.

      Best,

      Ana.

      • Robbo said

        Please dont take this the wrong way, i’m only asking as i’m not fully aware of how it all works. What is the difference between Agents and what you do?

        • Ana LZ Sport said

          Hi Robbo,

          No problem at all, feel free if you have questions.

          Agents work with professional athletes and professional clubs in Europe and usually take 10% percentage of the player’s salary. I.E: If player makes $100,000, agent takes $10,000.

          Our fee is fixed and this includes a huge administrative work and a big consulting job (we educate the volleyball player in regards to NCAA rules and many other details pretaining to NCAA sport). The goal is to provide a lot of exposure for the player by showing his video to all the NCAA universities and after that let him pick the school he/she is interrested in attending.

          Ana

          ps: for detailed information about our services and prices, feel free to contact me at ana@lzsport.com

  3. Amanda said

    Hey Devo,

    On the women’s side for athletes engaged in the development pathway we have been trying to centralise the coordination of communication between athletes and ‘decisions’ if you like. Both Pauline and I with the women’s program have extensive experience with the NCAA system as well. I think between us, including Alexis and the additional Aussie coaches over there I think we need to coordinate this better or have the opportunity to. I’d encourage open communication between us to assist the girls in making learned decisions on their best option.

    The reality of it is I suspect that there will always be athletes that fall through the cracks and others that go and never come back – The depth of the league is such that there is almost a place for a lot of our athletes in different divisions, but the knowledge on how to get there and what suits people best is a tough one. There is also the question of scholarships and what/who/how and why different athletes receive what they do.

    In addition, I’d like to thank you for recognising the girls that are over there and doing very well. It’s fantastic for them to receive the recognition at home on a more broad basis.

    Cheers,

    Amanda

    • devo said

      Hopefully we can move beyond talking about it.

      It is also important that not only elite players, but also second tier players are accomodated in any plans put into place.

      There are places in second div teams that would provide excellent opportunities for many of our young players who perhaps will not go on to play for Australia, but are looking for a reward for their years of commitment and training – although the chance of scholarships for these players are limited.

      Let’s not forget the boys in the planning.

      • Amanda said

        I agree with you on all levels of players being given the opportunity to have the NCAA experience and certainly assist anyone that has shown interest in that pathway. Unfortunately, for me, there isn’t too much I can help the boys with given the people I know, but would imagine the experience for them could be just as enlightening as for the girls.

        There are Division II and even III that would also be a good fit for second tier athletes, then there is the NAIA.

        • Ana LZ Sport said

          I would like to add on this subject to provide a little more info. From experience, I know that there are a lot less men’s volleyball teams in NCAA then women’s (20 GOOD programs in men’s).

          Moreover and unlike women, there are only 4 and half scholarships available and those are often split up between all the players on the roster. A lot of time, a high-level player would still need to cover between $20,000 and $25,000 per year whereas an average/solid women’s volleyball player would get a full scholarship ($40,000 per year and her cost will be zero – except plane ticket, personal expense, and personal insurance $700 per year) because of what I said in my previous post: 10 to 12 full scholarship per every women’s team.

  4. Jason said

    I’ve been involved in the US College System for a number of years. I’d be willing to assist in anyway possible.

    Jason Watson
    Arizona State University.

  5. Paterico said

    My son and a friend are there as we speak. I’m American by origin and my son has dual citizenship. I’ve been able to organize them to do a camp at Pepperdine as well as visit a couple top colleges in LA. Bill McHoul has been helpful and I’ve found coaches OS generally very positive and interested in the boys coming to look at their schools. It’s really been a matter of a few emails and phone calls and they will have the opportunity to meet 3 of the top coaches in America and see for themselves if NCAA could be a possibility for them.

  6. edbinnie said

    Hi all,
    this article appeared today in New York Times – on the issue of medical coverage in the NCAA.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/16/sports/16athletes.html

    Since my move to the US, understanding medical coverage is possibly my single greatest problem (although lots of other Aussies in the US say its understanding visas etc). Playing social volleyball here, I did a grade 3 ankle sprain. I have reasonable medical coverage, but I have still been out of pocket over $2,000 (all up the “quoted” medical coverage has amounted to over $15,000, although most of this is taken care of by my insurance). This required no surgery, just x-rays, MRI and 3 months of physical therapy (read physiotherapy).

    I bring this up here, because aside from working out what sort of experience you would like to have, the level of training, play etc, the coach that you have, visa conditions and medical coverage would have to be some of your top priorities when looking into the US system.

  7. Alexis said

    One thing about NCAA coaches is that, if you contact them, they will almost always respond politely and request more information. This is their job. Don’t mistake this for any interest (necessarily) in trying to help (sorry Jason!).

    I agree completely with Amanda’s comments in that as a volleyball community it would be ideal to pool resources and knowledge in order to best help any Australian athletes looking for opportunities there. This is not one person’s job, but any decision made can impact on a number of different areas of Australian Volleyball so the best possible advice should be given to everyone.

  8. Alexis said

    Just to clarify my comment regarding NCAA coaches: I certainly didn’t mean to imply that NCAA coaches don’t care and don’t genuinely try to help.

    However the first reason NCAA coaches will respond is that recruiting is the #1 priority for a coach, and they never want to risk missing out on a ‘gem’. So, when a coach gets back to you, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are ‘in’.

  9. Ana LZ Sport said

    I would like to add on this subject as well. I completely agree with Alexis and I have seen often times athletes thinking they are “in” if a coach answers or is interrested in them.

    I have had various situations happen. Some coaches are very interrested and at after a while end up finding a better player and then change their mind. It is important for prospect athletes that want to go study in the USA on a scholarship to understand that coaches in the US have to do this to make sure their recruiting is good at the end of the day. They definitely care, it is just the nature of the beast.

    This is another great advantage in working with us because we predict this and usually always have a back up plan in case something falls through. We basically need to do somewhat of the same thing as the coach (talk to a few universities simultaneously) to make sure the client is not left a few weeks before departure without a place to go and it being too late to find another university. Thanks to our experience, we know to think a few steps ahead… something somebody that tried to go on their own would not necessarely know how to do.

    Ana
    ana@lzsport.com

  10. Hello everyone,

    I just wanted to drop by and let you guys know that LZ Sport’s website has officially been redesigned and fully updated! It has great new interactive information (testimonials, photos, videos and updated news) on how we can help you obtain an volleyball athletic scholarship at an American University. Check it out at: http://www.LZSport.com.

    Thanks,

    Ana
    ana@LZSport.com

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