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There are more academic scholarship money than athletic scholarships

college scholarships high school to college recruiting scholarships student athletes Mar 13, 2021

With grueling practice schedules and frequent games, the complicated life of a student-athlete means always on the go. It also means parents must figure out how to pay for school.

Athletic scholarships typically are limited by each sport. What parents don't understand is that there are far more academic scholarships than there are athletic scholarships. Parents also can help their student-athletes find online scholarships that they can apply for.

Grades and test scores are very important because if you can't get a full academic scholarship, a partial athletic scholarship can be supplemented by a merit scholarship to result in a full-ride if your grades are on par with the expectations. There’s no limit on the number of academic (or merit) scholarships that colleges and universities can award. On average, you need a 3.5 or above GPA to be considered for merit scholarships, but full-ride academic scholarships typically go to high school students whose GPA is 3.8 or higher.

Some universities don’t even require a separate application for merit-based scholarships for college students. If your athlete’s college application lists a high-class ranking plus an ACT and/or SAT score that is at or above a certain number, the school will guarantee a college scholarship for your student-athlete.

NCAA Rules for Academic Scholarships

Federal and state financial aid based on need is exempted. Institutional academic scholarships for freshman may be exempted if the students meet one of the following conditions depending on the division:

Division 1

  • Top 10% of the high school graduating class
  • Achieve a cumulative high school GPA of at least 3.50
  • Score 1200 or higher on the SAT or ACT sum score of at least 105

Division 2

  • Top 20% of high school graduating class
  • Achieved a 3.5 cumulative GPA out of 4.00
  • ACT Sum score of 100 or SAT of 1140

The schools also have to certify that athletic information was not required as part of the application process although students may voluntarily list athletic achievements.

Considering the Scholarship Offer

One thing that parents need to think about when their student-athlete is considering college scholarships is what the family contribution will be after you factor in scholarships. Depending on the cost of tuition you still could end up paying a large amount of money, even with a scholarship offer. You will need to calculate what options make sense for your athlete. TruChampions is pleased to offer courses in our Master Class that discuss Scholarship offers and how to negotiate scholarships.