For many students athletic scholarships are viewed as the ticket to a bright future. Many parents sacrifice a lot in an effort to help their promising young athlete will be able to compete on the next level. Many parents have an unrealistic expectation that every good athlete will get a full ride and somehow their child will beat the odds.
Many parents and athletes believe that that there are large numbers of full-scholarships available for top athletes. That just is not the case. Consider that there 1 college scholarship for every 145 boys playing high school soccer. NCAA Division I football teams are limited to 85 full scholarships while soccer times are limited to 9.9 full scholarships. That is the total number of scholarships allowed per year. The scholarships available for incoming freshmen are greatly dependent upon the number of seniors leaving. Most teams split scholarships between several students.
Another common misconception is that scholarships are given for 4 years and that just isn’t the case. Most scholarships are given annually and may be revoked due to lack of academic or athletic performance.
Many good athletes do not even make the team much less get any form of scholarship. This may be due to lack of exposure or having an off day on the day the scouts came. The attitude of the parents also contributes to students loosing scholarships. Many parents have an unrealistic expectation that every good athlete will get a full ride. Some parents are unwilling to accept anything less than a full-ride.
The real money for scholarships lies with academic scholarships. Academic scholarships are limited by funds available rather than by quota.
Sports can play an important part in the development of teens. However it is important not to loose focus of the big picture. Very few teen athletes will play beyond the high school level much less in the pros. Injuries must be considered as well. It is better to develop a well-rounded student than focus on one particular area.
Source: NY Times