Athletes Commit to their Future by Committing to College


Warren Unzeuta

Macey Leonard (11), Joey Hobert (12), and Delaney Fuller (12) have committed to universities on athletic scholarships and must continue to maintain high academic and athletic standards in order to maintain their admission. Leonard will attend Brown for soccer, Hobert will attend Washington State for football, and Fuller will attend Angelo State for volleyball.

Jack O'Connor, Staff Writer

All across the nation, high school athletes sign letters of intent promising to compete athletically at universities or colleges and at the same time the athletes have to maintain their academics. Even here at San Juan Hills, many students are able to earn college scholarships through their dedication and hard work, both on and off the field.

Out of every single high school football player who competed during the 2018 season, only 2,613 of them were able to earn athletic scholarships. And that’s just for football, in other sports even fewer athletes actually receive athletic scholarships.

Without a doubt, being apart of the select group of athletes who receive athletic scholarship demonstrates not only an athletes’ incredible talent, but also their immense commitment to devotion to be the best player they can be

“[Getting a scholarship] takes a lot of hard work it doesn’t just happen to anybody. You have to work for what you have, it doesn’t just happen randomly,” said Dub Gleed, who has recently committed to the University of California Irvine to play baseball.

For an athlete, getting an athletic scholarship can help alleviate a lot of pressure and can plan out an athlete’s future in he or she’s sport.

“[Getting a scholarship is]  relieving because you finally know that you are able to play the sport you love the most at the school you love the most. I have the next five years planned out for me and I know what it is that I specifically need to do in order to be successful for the rest of high school and in college,” said Macey Leonard, who committed to play soccer at Brown University.

Although for committing to college for an athlete can relieve some of the anxiety of not knowing whether or not he or she will be able to compete at the college level, that doesn’t mean that they can take the training for their sport any less serious.

Senior Joey Hobert, who committed to play football at Washington State University, said that “I’m still gonna push myself to be the best player I can be at all times. Even if I don’t play my freshman year . . . I’m still gonna make sure I work harder than everyone else, no matter what.”

I’m still gonna push myself to be the best player I can be at all times. Even if I don’t play my freshman year . . . I’m still gonna make sure I work harder than everyone else, no matter what”

— Joey Hobert

But getting a sports scholarship isn’t just about what you do on the field, it’s also about how you perform in the classroom. Although it could depend on the college and the athlete, in most cases, athletes have to push themselves in their academics in order to get and then maintain their scholarship.

“In school, you can’t just start slacking, you have to maintain your good grades because if you don’t you could lose your scholarship,” said Gleed.

Athletic scholarships can also come with clauses that require the athletes to get a certain GPA or in other circumstances earn a certain score on their SAT or ACT score. “I have to take three AP classes a year and I have to get A’s and B’s in those classes. For SAT and ACT scores, I have to get at least a 28 on the ACT or a 1200 SAT, but they want me to get higher scores,” said Leonard.

But not only do committed athletes push themselves, both athletically and academically, the athletes also have to deal with the anxiety that comes with committing to college.

“Obviously it’s a little scary since it’s four years of your life and you want to make the right choice but everyone has always told me that ‘when you know, you know’ and that’s definitely the feeling I got [when I officially committed],” said Delaney Fuller, who committed to play volleyball at Angelo State University. 

According to Gleed, committing to college both raises and eases the pressure that comes with athletic scholarships. “[Committing] kind of brings down the aspect of you have to worry about what is going to happen after high school. It kind of makes you relax a bit and allows you to take a step back since you know what is going to be in the future for yourself. But [committing] also puts a little pressure on you in the sense that now you are the committed guy and you have to perform and prove it to everyone that you deserve what you have,” said Gleed.

Although getting athletic scholarships and committing to schools is an important step for athletes to make, once a student athlete does commit, that doesn’t mean they can rest easy until college. Athletes, like the ones at SJHHS, have to push themselves in both their athletics and their academics just to prove that they deserve what they have worked for.