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Why Your Academics Matter


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Student-athletes know that demonstrating their athletic ability can help them reach their goal of getting recruited. However, what most student-athletes tend to overlook is the importance of academics in reaching their dreams of playing at the next level. Maintaining exceptional grades can help you attain a scholarship and is one of the key factors coaches use when evaluating athletes.

Getting An Athletic Scholarship

Sometimes, one of the major obstacles of playing at a top choice school is the need for an athletic scholarship. One piece of criteria that coaches look at when deciding if they will give an athlete a scholarship or not is academic standing. Athletes who are dedicated to their academics and maintaining a high GPA have a much higher chance of receiving an athletic scholarship. Coaches are not simply looking for gifted athletes but also are looking for players who show their dedication in the classroom through their grades and high test scores. Compared to peers with the same athletic ability, a student with high academic standing has a better chance of receiving an athletic scholarship as opposed to a student only performing to meet the basic academic eligibility.

Academic Scholarships & Other Financial Aid Options

Due to the way the recruiting process works, coaches have limited athletic scholarships to offer. Students who excel scholastically can also be eligible for academic scholarships and this can be extremely helpful if an institution has limited athletic scholarships to distribute. Academic scholarships vary for each institution but most can often greatly reduce the costs of tuition. In order to qualify for academic scholarships athletes must often have GPA’s higher than 3.5 and typically have high test scores for the SAT’s and ACT’s, although specific requirements vary depending on the college.

High school students with great grades have more options in their choice of college and have a higher chance of attending college with a scholarship under their belt. Even if an athlete does not receive an athletic scholarship directly from the school, a variety of other grants, scholarships, and programs often can aid students. Requirements for these other forms of financial aid often require good academic standing so having good grades is always beneficial regardless of where you receive aid from.

Bottom Line

Student-athletes who have a solid GPA and solid  SAT and ACT test scores have a much greater chance of receiving scholarships at the next level. Students who focus in on their schooling will be much more attractive to coaches seeking out skilled and hard-working athletes.

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