We spent 15 hours reading reviews of NCSA. In summary, we found more than 5,500 reviews with an average star rating of 4.8. See below for more details.
*Last updated June 2023
[NOTE: AthleticScholarships.net and NCSA are part of a team of business partners working together to help student-athletes discover their best college fit]
Across All Websites, NCSA Reviews Show a 4.8 Star Rating with 5,500+ Total Reviews
We looked all over the web and found more than 5,500 reviews of NCSA. We aggregated feedback from Google, Yelp, BBB, Apple App Store, Google Play Store, Trustpilot, NCSA’s own website and expert message boards. Below we summarize the reviews of NCSA and explain what we saw from parents, athletes and college coaches.
Why Parents Like NCSA
- Excellent guidance from NCSA Recruiting Coaches – Many parents wrote that their NCSA recruiting coach was able to connect with their athlete and keep them motivated.
- The recruiting tools save time for busy families – A large number of parents said having all recruiting information in one place saved them a lot of time in researching colleges.
- Finding more colleges – A large number of parents said that NCSA helped them find more schools than they previously knew existed.
- Maximizing opportunities for financial aid – Parents also mentioned that they learned how to find scholarship money in the form of athletic scholarships, grant, aid and other awards for their student-athletes.
What Parents Don’t Like
- The most common complaints are about challenges with canceling membership – According to NCSA’s website, a new member has 3 days after they sign up for a premium membership to cancel. The most important thing when considering NCSA is to make sure your athlete really wants to be a college athlete. Families may also cancel if the athlete has a career-ending injury.
- Some parents were unhappy that they ultimately chose a school they had been in contact with before using NCSA– Some parents mentioned being frustrated that after signing up for NCSA, their athlete still ended up at a school they had connected with on their own.
Why Student-Athletes Like NCSA
- Recruiting Coaches serve as someone to talk to who knows the process – Many student-athletes said they most enjoyed the direct communication they had with their recruiting coach. Many of NCSA’s recruiting coaches are former college coaches and athletes who provide the type of authentic, expert advice that really helps during the ups and downs of the recruiting process.
- Recruiting coaches really know me – a lot of the athlete reviews explain that it felt like the “recruiting coach really understood what I was looking for.” NCSA’s secret sauce is using experts to help in identifying schools because simply having a list of colleges and information isn’t enough.
- “Insider Info” into different schools – Athletes appreciated that their recruiting coach often knew insider info on different colleges. Whether it was a direct relationship with a coach or having worked with other athletes who committed to that school, the recruiting coaches could give insights that aren’t available through a google search.
- Encouragement in the face of challenges – Many of the athletes said that NCSA was great for helping them get over the temporary setbacks during the recruiting process.
What Athletes Don’t Like
- Technology Issues – The most common complaints were on the App Store reviews, in which athletes complained about trouble logging into the app. It appears this was fixed in recent updates, but it’s certainly something to consider.
- Certain memberships don’t have full access to a recruiting coach – Athletes with the Champion memberships want more access to recruiting coaches.
Why College Coaches Like NCSA
- College coaches like being able to find more prospects and recruit nationwide – The majority of college coaches say that NCSA allows them to find more prospects than they could without a digital recruiting network. They frequently say things like “we would have never found this athlete without you.”
- Coaches appreciate how NCSA helps get their school and team in front of more athletes – Most college programs have extremely limited recruiting and marketing budgets, and NCSA helps get their name out to more qualified recruits.
What College Coaches Don’t Like
- Some big name schools complain that too many athletes email them – All big-time college teams are swamped with emails from interested recruits, and because NCSA is the largest platform, it generates a large portion of that inbound interest.
- A few coaches say they don’t like to use recruiting services – Not all college coaches are the same, and they certainly don’t all recruit the same ways. Coaches who prefer to recruit mostly from their camps don’t like recruiting services that begin the evaluation process online.
NCSA, NCSA College Recruiting, Next College Student Athlete, NCSA Athletic Recruiting: Who is NCSA?
NCSA is the acronym for their full legal name, National Collegiate Scouting Association. In 2022, the organization changed its name from Next College Student Athlete to NCSA College Recruiting. Prior to 2016, the company also went by the names NCSA Recruiting and NCSA Athletic Recruiting.
If you are doing research and looking for reviews of NCSA, you will also see phrases like “NCSA recruiting reviews,” “NCSA athletic recruiting reviews” and “NCSA Scouting reviews.” All of these searches are the same company and you will find the most recent and up-to-date reviews by searching “NCSA Reviews” or “NCSA College Recruiting reviews.”
NCSA is now part of IMG Academy
Last year, NCSA College Recruiting joined forces with IMG Academy to support and share the same mission of helping student-athletes. As a subsidiary of IMG Academy, NCSA is part one of the world’s largest and most advanced multi-sport training and educational institutions. Together, NCSA and IMG Academy work to empower every student-athletes on their path-to-college.
Does NCSA Really Work?
A question we hear about the college recruiting process is whether a student-athlete should trust paid recruiting services like NCSA, often because a careful search can come up with some strange reviews of NCSA.
The short answer is this: If you’re a student-athlete looking for opportunities to play in college, using a paid recruiting service can absolutely help you find a sports scholarship or roster spot. There are costs involved (scroll down to the bottom of the page for a link that details costs of the different recruiting packages offered by NCSA).
While some paid recruiting services are smaller, local-based companies, national recruiting services like NCSA can help you find opportunities outside of your regional colleges and universities. But the range of NCSA reviews can be confusing and possibly make you wonder, is NCSA is legit? The answer is yes, NCSA College Recruiting is legitimate.
This type of recruiting company operates by matching student-athlete profiles with college coaches’ information to help you understand what kind of opportunities you’d qualify for, helping you take the guesswork out of the sports recruiting process. Because of the size of companies like NCSA College Recruiting, they’ll also help you look beyond the schools you might already be considering and discover more opportunities.
Athletes who are proactive in large recruiting networks like NCSA don’t just rely on the service to do the work for them, but they reach out to college coaches and use the paid products and services as tools to help them find the best college fit.
Wondering if NCSA is a scam is like wondering why being on Facebook doesn’t get you more friends; college-bound student-athletes need to use this kind of platform smartly and put in the effort to take advantage of its features. NCSA is not a scam.
Yes, Recruiting Services Like NCSA Are Legit for Student-Athletes
This is always a difficult question to answer with online research. When reading reviews of NCSA, most of the reviews focus on the experience of individual users. We did a lot of research to see if NCSA is a legitimate business and here is what we found:
NCSA is the Official Recruiting Partner of 10 National Governing Bodies
They show 120+ different partnerships with very impressive organizations including the NAIA, the second largest governing body in college sports. We found some press releases from the past several years showcasing some of their partnerships.
- 2023 – NCSA College Recruiting partnership with US Lacrosse extended.
- 2022 – NCSA College Recruiting was named the official recruiting partner of USA Softball.
- 2022 – NCSA College Recruiting was named the official recruiting partner of The National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA).
- 2022 – NCSA College Recruiting renewed their partnership as the official recruiting partner of Chicago Public Schools.
- 2021 – NCSA was named official responsible recruiting partner for USA Hockey.
- 2020 – NCSA was named official responsible recruiting partner for USA Triathlon.
- 2019 – NCSA was named official recruiting partner of USA Baseball, US Youth Soccer and USA Water Polo.
- 2019 – NCSA was named preferred recruiting service of North America Hockey League.
- 2017 – NCSA was named the official recruiting partner for USA Track & Field, USA Volleyball, and USA Wrestling.
- 2018 – NCSA was named official responsible recruiting partner for US Lacrosse.
- 2016 – NCSA was named the official recruiting partner for USA Field Hockey.
NCSA Has Won Multiple “Best Places to Work” Awards
While being a good place to work might not matter for picking a grocery store, for a business-like NCSA, it is very important. When you are a paid member of NCSA, you are working very closely with their recruiting experts and when employees are happy, they are more likely to provide better service.
It appears that employees really like working for NCSA.
- NCSA is an 11x recipient of the Chicago’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For
- In 2022, NCSA was named in Fortune magazine’s best workplaces in Chicago
- In 2019, they were voted 55 Best Companies to work for in Chicago by Fortune Magazine
- The National Association for Business Resources voted NCSA a “Best and Brightest Company to Work for in the Nation”
- NCSA was selected as a Top Workplace by the Chicago Tribune
- NCSA’s employees rate the company a 4.0 out of 5 on Glassdoor (the average company rating in the nation is 3.3)
There are a lot of hyperbolic rumors saying that recruiting companies like NCSA scam student-athletes and their families for a lot of money, which we have found to be untrue. Whether it’s NCSA or other digital platforms, you are able to put your athletic profile into a database where college coaches can search for you, and that is all free.
Complaints to consumer organization like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) are invariably from athletes and parents who did not get the result they wanted. NCSA reviews that you read online should be read in context. In general, it’s less common to see reviews from happy customers.
Additionally, paid services like NCSA offer step-by-step education, resources and one-on-one consultations about your recruiting process. A lot of student-athletes benefit from online coaching clinics where NCSA reviews specifics of the college recruiting process and all of the intricate details of the NCAA regulations.
There are big differences between free do-it-yourself networks and premium, full-service recruiting services, so keep that in mind when you’re researching NCSA.