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Senior Scholarships

The Journey of Getting to College on a Sports Scholarship
Image of Kyra Quinn who is going to Bushnell University for NAI Basketball. (kyraq3)

The spotlight shined down on these four varsity student-athletes. One of them speeding down the court dribbling the basketball, the other tackling his way to first down, and the last two, running their hearts out to finish first place in every race. These students stand out beyond the rest being the best of the best in their chosen high school sport, and they’re not stopping here.

Although these students are extremely blessed with these opportunities, it might be too much for them or anyone to handle.  In contrast to the general public, stress is a natural part of anyone’s life. When it comes to choosing a college, stress can become too much for these collegiate athletes. The fear of making choices and deciding their future is a huge decision to make in their lives, and no one would want to mess that up. 

According to Trine Education, it highlights that an NCAA study found  30% of surveyed athletes feel  extremely overwhelmed, “with nearly 25% feeling mentally exhausted.” This pressure is felt through the whole procedure of obtaining a scholarship, which starts with communication.

The first thing to do is contact colleges by emailing an application and staying in touch. 

Senior varsity cross country/track and field runner Madison Shaver said,” I had to make sure that my application and my grades were all updated and that I showed leadership skills and extracurriculars.” Getting good grades is one thing, but staying consistent in school and your sport . The pressure from peers, parents, and coaches to get good grades while investing in a sport is tough. These amazing students figured out a way to do it.

Along with applications athletes  choose a coach that will benefit them and their goals for what they want to do in their sport. Overall making sure the coaches are right for them. 

Captain of the girl’s basketball team and Bushnell University commit, Senior Kyra Quinn, known as KQ from her friends and her teammates said, You want to be around coaches that are going to value you and your time and what you have to offer and can see your love for the game outside of playing well.” Choosing a coach that will help the athlete improve themselves and their sport is vital. A strong presence of guidance can help relieve worries and get athletes to focus more and become better players on and off the sports field. 

Image of Luke Lawson who is going to Cal Lutheran University for D3 Football

That’s why getting in contact with coaches, meeting them, and having them watch the athletes’ games/meets/matches are so important for them as athletes. However, having some of the coaches/recruiters come and watch their games can sometimes be nerve-wracking for incoming collegiate athletes so these athletes try to play their best and not let any adversity stop them. 

Although Senior Luke Lawson, Captain of the varsity football team, wasn’t nervous at all. He was unfazed and ready to show off to the recruiters. “Some recruiters did [come to games], most of them came for important games but it was mainly just me going to them and communicating with them. Cal Lutheran went to two of my games and an all-star game of mine. The colleges try to go as much as they can,” said Lawson. He was ready to take on the game and wanted to show the recruiters all of his moves. 

Now, Lawson was not worried but that is not true for almost all college athletes. Quinn said, “Sometimes when coaches would come to watch you, you wouldn’t know who was coming to watch you so you didn’t know if they, you know look at me or if they are doing it on purpose or just glancing over at me.” The unknown causes stress for many people, as well as overthinking moments. Even with this, Quinn still found a way to overcome and play her heart out for the recruiters. Whether athletes are excited or nervous about the recruiters coming they still need to figure out what it’s going to take to play their hardest for the recruiters, doing this can result in offers upon offers for different colleges.

Getting offers from colleges is an exciting time for most. But for others, they can cause distress. For many student-athletes, the first offer feels amazing. The third one felt good. The sixth one felt overwhelming. These overwhelming feelings could affect the way these college athletes play.

Madison Shaver is going to Cal Lutheran University for D3 Cross Country and Track

Lawson said, “As more offers came in it started to be a tougher decision and I just had to figure out what was best for me.” Lawson had to determine what he needed to do to get him ahead in his collegiate career.

According to Arizona State University, “Deciding what to do after high school graduation is a major life choice. If [seniors] are admitted to multiple colleges, they may feel overwhelmed with the decision. They want the best college experience possible and might be worried about making the “wrong” choice.” Everyone has things to be worried about in their lives. However, having multiple offers can be an intense sense of worry for these incoming freshmen. As well as the thought that they are making the right choice.

One of these seniors, Quinn said, “The first offer was really really, motivating I would say, and then once they started coming, a lot of people would think that it would become less stressful because it’s like oh you have all these opportunities, but it almost puts a little bit more pressure on you depending on how you look at it.” Most people would think getting offers would be a weight lifted off your shoulders but for many seniors, it was double the amount of pressure they already felt. Having options is good but having too many options can put a burden on these soon-to-be college athletes. 

When everything falls into place it can be a feeling of immense relief, especially for these seniors who have to decide their whole future. 

Ashley Purcell is going to the University of Santa Barbra for D1 Track and Cross Country.

Ashley Purcell is one of these seniors who was extremely reassured by her choice. “I was relieved like the whole process was over and just excited because I love the campus. and it is everything I want in a school and I get to keep competing.” 

Making this choice soothes the athlete’s worries when getting ready to go to college. It lets them know that all the hard work that they put into their sport, emailing, getting in contact with coaching, and going through the recruiting process is all worth it because they reached their goal. This eases the worry and stress from these Seniors and they can finally celebrate.

Shaver said “[Cal Lutheran]was my top school so once I got accepted for that I was super excited to just know that I was committed to a school and I was super excited to run.” 

The sensation of the seniors’ hard work being paid off is an amazing feeling for these soon-to-be collegiate athletes. This has been an incredible journey for these seniors, both good moments and bad moments, they still pushed through and got to the happy ending that they deserve. This is the end of their first chapter of life but the beginning of their whole story ahead.


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About the Contributors
Mia Batcher
Mia Batcher, Writer
Mia Batcher is a freshman at San Marcos High School. Mia joined Pendragon because she likes to write and she thought it would be a good way to be involved in the school.
Christiana Samuel
Christiana Samuel is a Freshman at San Marcos High School. She joined Pendragon because she has always had a spark for writing and telling stories about the things going on around her.

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