As part of our Featured Player content series, SoccerWire is publishing Q&A articles with recently-committed players who are Featured in the SoccerWire Player Directory. The series will allow players to share their stories on the college recruiting process, travel and high school soccer, and their passion for the beautiful game.

In this edition we will showcase Sami Fisher, who has committed to play NCAA Division I soccer in 2023 at the University of Florida. Fisher plays travel soccer in the ECNL for Phoenix Rising FC, and attends Chaparral High School in Scottsdale, Arizona.

SoccerWire: What made you decide to commit to Florida?

Sami Fisher: I was looking for the right balance for me. That was a mix of top academics, competitive soccer in a top conference and where I felt I could really make an impact. Florida checked all the boxes and coach Sam and the rest of the staff are great and I felt like they want to win and build a great soccer program.

SW: What was the recruiting process like and what did you learn about yourself while going through it?

SF: I really took my time. Having three older siblings that went through the soccer recruiting process, they all told me to take my time, don’t rush, don’t feel like you have to commit because you see others committing. It was hard because you want to jump at your first offer and you wonder if you are making the right decision. Finally, when I visited Florida it all hit me that it was the right place and the staff were great and sincere. I learned that being patient often pays off and you have to trust your gut in decisions like this.

SW: How has social media and being a SoccerWire Featured Player helped you with the college recruiting process?

SF: I would say there were a number of benefits. It certainly helped build awareness with the schools because they all track the players on SoccerWire and other platforms (Twitter, IG, etc). I had a lot of inbound emails from coaches soon after my profile was posted. It also opened my eyes to schools that I had not considered early in the process. Finally, it gave me some additional confidence going through the process that I might not have had. At times, it can be a little daunting and you don’t know where to start, what to say, questions to ask, etc. SoccerWire helped reduce some of the overall anxiety.

SW: What are your favorite subjects in school and what do you think you would like to study in college?

SF: I love business and the marketing side of business. I also think that it is an area that continues to change so fast with all the new ways to connect with your audience. I will keep an open mind, but most likely you will find me studying marketing at Florida.

SW: Outside of soccer, what clubs, organizations, and/or jobs are you involved in?

SF: Outside of year around soccer, I volunteer for the Special Olympics as a soccer coach. I also really enjoy participating in student government and was the Senior Class Vice President my senior year.

SW: What has your experience been like playing for Phoenix Rising?

SF: It was amazing and something I will miss. The soccer was great, playing in ECNL against all of the Socal teams was super fun and very competitive. I will miss all the trips to Socal playing against San Diego Surf, Blues, and Legends! I made some of my best friends ever while playing at Rising. I was so lucky to have some of the best coaches on the planet, Coach Paul (Taylor) and Coach Kelly (Cagle). Yes, they pushed us really hard, but now reflecting back I know why and I feel like I am really ready for college.

SW: Do you have any pregame rituals that you like to do to get yourself ready for a game?

SF: I always use red pre-wrap to hold my hair back. On the way to the game I usually blast some Drake or Nas to get fired up! And just before kick-off I have a special handshake with a few of my teammates.

SW: If you could give one piece of advice to a younger player that wants to play soccer at a high level what would it be?

SF: You have to work outside of team practice. Work on your touch, weak foot, dribbling, etc. Having strong skills will get you comfortable on the ball and set you apart from others.

SW: Is there anyone that you would like to give a shoutout to who has helped you both on and off of the field?

SF: I already mentioned Coach Paul and Coach Kelly! I owe a special thanks to Steve Lindquist of Helix Performance. The countless hours he put in to train me and improve my strength and speed! It goes without saying, I would not be where I am at without all that my mom and dad sacrifice daily!