College sports in USA are easily compared with some European competitions. The conditions for athletic improvement are incredible, but vary between divisions. The most powerful and biggest one is D1. This is where athletes regularly travel across USA to compete with many different colleges and people from different backgrounds.
An athletic scholarship that is given to an athlete does not require anything else but fort he athlete to reach a certain academic standard, which are usually dictated by the team. The only other requirement is to attend all the team events. A student athlete’s responsibility is to represent his/her university as best as they can and be a role model both in sports as well as academically. More about athletic scholarships HERE.
Get to know university sports
NCAA also supports many other sports, for which we can help you get all the information you need. Apart from the above mentioned sports (both men and women’s teams), universities offer athletic scholarships fort he following sports:
- Men’s sports: baseball, boxing, cross-country (goes under track and field), fencing, football, gymnastics, wrestling, lacrosse, rifle and skiing.
- Women’s sports: bowling, cross-country (goes under track and field), fencing, gymnastics, beach volleyball, lacrosse, rifle, rowing, skiing, softball.
In which divisions do college teams compete?
Some basic information about each division (NCAA, NJCAA in NAIA)
The first NCAA division is followed by NCAA division 1, NAIA division 1 and NAIA division 2. The fact that teams compete in one of these divisions does not mean that the college is not academically or athletically as good as a college in NCAA division 1.The American system of classification has many conditions, which different universities cannot fulfill for various reasons. The conditions can either be specific infrastructures or the condition that a college in division 1 has to have at least 15 athletic teams, etc. It’s important to know that tuitions are high at every college and each athlete should be beyond grateful if offered an athletic scholarship. Coaches dedicate a lot of their time and attention to individuals in teams, regardless of which division their team is in. Many professional athletes have started their successful way in division 2 or 3.
NJCAA is a sports/athletic league at two-year junior colleges. Usually, individuals decide for this one when coaches have already made a scholarship offer according to their athletic performance, but their academic performance is not good enough yet. By studying and training hard at a junior college for one or two years, athletes can achieve the results they have to, to get a scholarship in one of the above-mentioned divisions.
In all NCAA divisions together, there are more than 450,000 student-athletes in 23 different sports. Each one of them has to achieve the given academic standards*, without exceptions.
*Academic standards: each division has different academic standards, which each student-athlete has to meet if they want to compete in the division they chose. NCAA division 1 and 2 have the toughest academic limitations. In division 1 they use the sliding scale, according to which they calculate if a student is academically suitable for competing in NCAA division 1.
More information about NCAA and NCAA Clearinghouse (eligibility center) here.
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