full ride scholarships

Basketball in hoopGetting an athletic scholarship isn’t all about the money.  Parents and student-athletes can let their pride get in the way of the best choice.  They put the scholarship offer at the top of the list and the kid ends up at a college and program that aren’t the best fit.

In my case, I transferred after just one year.  I really enjoyed my first choice, the University of Minnesota.  But it wasn’t the best fit athletically or academically.

I have to admit that I transferred to Indiana University for athletic reasons, but other factors fell into place to make IU the best fit overall.  I’m glad for my Minnesota experience, but I’m thrilled for my Indiana experience.

I could have saved myself and my parents a lot of stress and expense had I known then what I know today. Continue reading

FootballThe NCAA guidelines state that full-ride scholarships will cover fees and tuition, board, room, as well as all books related to a particular course. But these scholarships are only offered to students who participate in “head-count sports” such as basketball, Division 1-A football, women’s tennis, women’s gymnastics, or women’s volleyball. All other sports fall under the category of “equivalency sports”, which allows a coach to determine the allotted scholarship amount for many players. Some of these scholarships may be partial while others are full-ride.

Equivalency Sports for Men and Women

Equivalency sport scholarships can be used as a starting point to obtain a full-ride scholarship in future years, or at least an increase in funding as you progress through the program. Sports that fall under this category for men include baseball, Division 1-AA football, gymnastics, wrestling, tennis, rifle, and volleyball. The women’s list of sports includes equestrian, rowing, field hockey, softball, squash, and rugby. Equivalency sports for both men and women include cross-country/field and track events, fencing, ice hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, skiing, diving and swimming, as well as water polo. Athletic scholarships through these sports will offer monetary and support benefits that can be crucial for the development of student-athletes.

Financial Realities

Full-ride athletic scholarships are expected to cover all costs involved in the education of a student. But there remains a sizable difference between the costs of attending college and the scholarship. Students are not fully covered for things such as incidentals and travel home on vacations, but the scholarship will be a huge factor in saving a lot of money over the duration of your college career.

Although most athletic scholarships are one-year renewable scholarships, there is a move towards four-year guaranteed scholarships.  That’s good news for student-athletes.  According to the Indiana Business Journal, the Big Ten made a startling announcement late last month:Track

“The Big Ten Conference said [Tuesday] that it supports guaranteed four-year scholarships and improved medical coverage for its athletes.

“The league announced in a statement signed [Tuesday] by its 14 presidents that it proposes working within the NCAA structure to provide greater academic security for its athletes by guaranteeing scholarships for four years, even if an athlete can no longer compete or has left for a professional career. Athletic scholarships are typically awarded on a one-year renewable basis. Continue reading

Cell phoneIn my last post, I went through a number of questions athletes should ask college coaches when the coaches call.  Or when you call a coach.  Recruiting is a two-way street.  While the coach is recruiting athletes, you are recruiting schools.  You should take the initiative to find out as much as you can about the program, coach and school.  That way you can make an informed decision.  Let’s continue from last week’s discussion.

College Life

What is a typical day for a student-athlete?
You will learn a typical schedule that will include courses, practices, meal times, study times, etc. This will give you insight as to how to manage your time and assist you with needed adjustments.

What does the institution’s services entail?
You will be informed of any study hall hours that may be required of you during your tenure. Also, this is a good time to ask about the availability of tutors. Continue reading

college athletesEvery parent alive would love for their kids to get a complete scholarships and dodge the escalating tuition bullet.  For athletes, these are called full rides.  We read about them in the paper on signing days, and the write-ups make it seem like every scholarship athlete is rewarded with a full ride. 

But no.  That’s not true.  Continue reading

The NCAA guidelines state that full-ride scholarships will cover fees and tuition, board, room, as well as all books related to a particular course. But these scholarships are only offered to students who participate in “head-count sports” such as basketball, Division 1-A football, women’s tennis, women’s gymnastics, or women’s volleyball. All other sports fall under the category of “equivalency sports”, which allows a coach to determine the allotted scholarship amount for many players. Some of these scholarships may be partial while others are full-ride.

Equivalency Sports for Men and Women

Equivalency sport scholarships can be used as a starting point to obtain a full-ride scholarship in future years, or at least an increase in funding as you progress through the program. Sports that fall under this category for men include baseball, Division 1-AA football, gymnastics, wrestling, tennis, rifle, and volleyball. The women’s list of sports includes equestrian, rowing, field hockey, softball, squash, and rugby. Equivalency sports for both men and women include cross-country/field and track events, fencing, ice hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, skiing, diving and swimming, as well as water polo. Athletic scholarships through these sports will offer monetary and support benefits that can be crucial for the development of student-athletes.    

Financial Realities

Full-ride athletic scholarships are expected to cover all costs involved in the education of a student. But there remains a sizeable difference between the costs of attending college and the scholarship. Students are not fully covered for things such as incidentals and travel home on vacations, but the scholarship will be a huge factor in saving a lot of money over the duration of your college career.