Our basketball dream – a first look back

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In recent posts, we shared our reasons to participate in the LDV Exposure Camp & Combine and our personal expectations.

Now, that we are back home, you are probably wondering how our basketball dream has evolved. After all, we decided to participate in Exposure Camp in California to explore and improve our chances to attain a basketball college scholarship.

First (intermediate) results
Hopefully, we will not disappoint you when saying that we have not yet signed a contract with any college. That would have been more than we ever expected. If and to what extend the camp participation has actually impacted our chances of playing college basketball in the US we will only be able to see clearly during the next 1-2 years.

In any case, the journey has confirmed and strengthened our aspirations, hopes and plans. Therefore, immediately after the end of our journey, our big adventure, it is still a good time to draw some preliminary positive conclusions:

From a basketball perspective, we are both fully convinced that the US system offers the best opportunity to combine sports and study. The way athletics and academics are combined in US colleges is pretty unique globally. For this reason, we are now even more eager to leverage basketball in order to finance a college attendance in the US by means of a sports scholarship. We took the first step to draw attention to our skills in California. Ideally, there will be a scholarship offer at some point as a team wants to leverage our specific skills. In that case, we would get to decide if we want to accept the offer.

Open Questions
Several coaches from Division I and Division II teams attended the LDV Exposure Camp. Although the Division I teams usually play at an even higher performance level, the division is not too relevant to us. Instead, we feel that it is more important that we get along well with the team and the coach and feel comfortable at the college itself. A good atmosphere within the team and a positive connection with the coach would therefore have a much bigger impact on our decision to join a team than the division the team plays in.

Another decisive aspect is the academic quality. We put as much focus on our academic progress as on the athletic opportunities. We will still be quite young when we finish High School. Still, we already now look for suitable colleges, at which we can meet our academic aspirations. Both of us are pretty good at school. So we expect to successfully complete the Abitur, the German High School diploma, and meet the US college admission criteria. But one key question is still open: What should we study? One objective for the coming months will be to get clear on the professional direction we want to take in the future.

Support with the challenges that come with our dream
There is still a lot of work ahead of us, yet we hope to find a college that matches our aspirations for the combination of academics and basketball. We are looking forward to the challenge – it will ultimately decide about our entire future, as basketball players, as students and as persons. With the confirmation that Linda Fröhlich will help us with questions and comments in the future, we feel very well equipped and not alone our journey. We can hardly think of anyone who could give us better advice.

Linda has encouraged us to try this path. According to her experiences, the entry into college life is hard because you have to deal with a new environment, a new language and a new team. But although the first years may be difficult, one grows from the experiences and the shared memories with fellow students. These experiences stay with you for a lifetime and they define who you are or will be one day: Do you let go of your dream because it seems too difficult, too exhausting, and too impossible? Or do you stick with it because you believe in yourself and in your dream? Will this be enough to ultimately make your dream come true?

There are many questions and challenges ahead. But as we said, we are not alone on this journey: We have the support of our families and our friends. And we know that Linda with all her experience and know-how will be there for us if we call her with questions. We are very thankful for all the support Linda has extended to us so far. She helped us move ahead – just like the other coaches and staff of the FRO-family.

We can only hope that our desire to reach our goals and the support of many who help open-mindedly and selflessly will ultimately lead us to arrive where we want to go.

We benefitted a lot from the weeks in California and we hope you enjoyed our articles. Hopefully, they have also inspired some of you to dare try a similar path. For us it was an excellent choice to put our basketball dream to the test during the LDV Exposure Camp in the US!

Good luck and all the best,
Ana and Ayla.

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