The average high school student juggles essential academic classes, extracurricular activities, time devoted to sports and social life in order to get into college. A select few students take it even further by working hard to become the best athletes possible — with the ultimate goal of winning a college sports scholarship. It’s not an easy path, but many OC students have been successful.
Athletic scholarships can be awarded in a variety of sports, including baseball, basketball, crew, fencing, football, golf, track and field and gymnastics. Scholarships are given to outstanding athletes who represent a college in respective competitions and are professionally managed by college coaches. Successful teams often gain media attention and can be considered more popular than their professional counterparts. Students who successfully play in college often have the opportunity to advance to a professional level.
Sport scholarships are provided on a year-to-year basis and can be renewed for up to four years. With a sport scholarship, you can ultimately study any subject that that college offers because your studies are independent from the sport and the scholarship. Scholarships, can however, be revoked for cheating, inefficient academic performance, unfair play in your sport and disobeying campus rules.
So how can student-athletes get sports scholarships? Easier said than done. Being the top player on your team while actively participating in all the practices is not easy to begin with, nor is juggling all of your academics.
Christian Davis, a freshman at Orange Lutheran, has been playing baseball since he was two and hopes to acquire a scholarship in the future. He knows that achieving that goal will take a lot of hard work.
“From the age of two to 10, I spent about three hours a week playing baseball. From 10 until 14 I spent about eight hours a week, and now in high school it’s about 10 and a half hours a week,” Davis commented.
Are all the hours of work high school athletes put in actually worth it? Beckman varsity tennis player Patricia Moran thinks so. Moran’s ultimate goal is to continue playing on the varsity team through high school. Then, with the help of scholarships, she hopes to continue playing in college.
“College nowadays can get really expensive, so putting the time and money into sports prior would almost balance it out, or be even better,” Moran said.
Beckman baseball player Tyler Evert also recognizes the financial benefits of doing well with a sport. He said he has dreamed of playing professional ball ever since he started the sport.
“The time and money is worth it because I’m doing something I love,” Evert said. “And in the end I get the best reward out if it, which is satisfaction and getting better at the game.”
Ultimately, the time and work going into the sport is at the discretion of the player, depending on where they want to go with it in the future. But, it can be done — and many Orange County student-athletes are proof of that.