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February 11, 2013

Do you know the scholarship requirements?

From the Publisher:

Many student athletes who graduate each year would have the opportunity to continue to play the sports they love and get portions of their educations paid for if they only knew the rules.

TNVarsity.com contacted Marlynn "The Eligibility Coach" Jones recently to ask her if she would update the student athletes in high school today on the guidelines and procedures of properly becoming eligible for college scholarships.

She knows that making one simple mistake in the Eligibility Certification Game can cost parents thousands of dollars. That's why she wrote, The Athletic $cholarship Eligibility Coach: A How-To Guide for the Eligibility Certification Game to help parents, youth coaches and guidance counselors to direct their high school student-athletes to obtain a College Athletic $cholarship Offer.

The following is advice from Marlynn "The Eligibility Coach" Jones about how student athletes can live out their dreams and often change the direction of their lives through athletic scholarships.

Warning, some high schools have varying classes that may or may not qualify under NCAA core grade-point-average definitions. Please contact your school guidance department to find out what classes qualify.

For more from Coach Jones her book is available in paperback and eBook formats at www.amazon.com www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.eligibilitycoach.com. For a preview of the book click here.

High School athletes wanting to take their game to the next level need to learn about the newest NCAA eligibility rules or they will be left on the sidelines.

A drastic change in the Eligibility Certification Game requires members of the high school Class of 2016 to qualify for an athletic scholarship before their senior year.

That forces the Class of 2016 to step up the pace because many of them are in the second half of their freshman year of high school.

NCAA statistics show that 15 percent of college freshmen athletes in 2009-2010 would not have received athletic scholarships if they had been restricted to the new rules. In football, the percentage rises to 35.2 with men's basketball topping out at 43.1 percent.

For more background information, please refer to Dana O'Neil's article, Eligibility v. academic preparedness.



Core Courses

Often student athletes talk to those who have received scholarships about the path they took to college.

Nevertheless, with the new rules the path options have changed.

Student athletes should check with their guidance counselors, who should be updated on the current academic guidelines and requirements.

Remember that 15 percent of the students who got scholarship last year wouldn't be able to get scholarships under these new rules.

Students can no longer load up on electives early in their high school careers and save academic courses for their junior and senior years.

The new initial eligibility standards require students to complete 10 of the 16 total core courses by the end of the junior year. And, seven of those 10 core courses must be in English, Math, and Natural Science.

Once the GPA for these 10 core courses has been earned, students may not replace or substitute other grades achieved in the senior year.

The only way to raise the GPA in the senior year is through the six remaining core courses. Therefore, a student can be disqualified from receiving a college athletic scholarship BEFORE starting classes for the senior year.

Sliding Scale

Currently there is one sliding scale that allows students with high test scores to have lower GPAs, and vice versa. However, students with GPAs below 2.0 are not eligible to receive athletic scholarships. Students who have grades or test scores that fall outside of this sliding scale are considered nonqualifiers. These students may still attend college if admitted, however their family will have to finance all of the first-year college costs.

New NCAA rules include two sliding scales. The current sliding scale will be used to identify students who may be awarded athletic scholarships and practice during the first academic year of college. The second sliding scale will be used to identify students who may compete during their first year in addition to being able to practice and receive an athletic scholarship. Students who test scores and GPA's fall outside of both sliding scales will be nonqualifiers.

Academic Redshirt -- Blessing or Curse?

Currently nonqualifiers must pay all of their first year college expenses. In addition, they may not practice, compete or travel with teams to away competitions. If these student-athletes complete 24 hours of course credit during their initial year of college, they may possibly earn an athletic scholarship during their second year of college.

For members of the Class of 2016, former non-qualifiers, will now become academic redshirts. While these students will be able to receive athletic scholarships during their freshman year, the question remains will they be able to meet the current continuing academic benchmarks required to maintain scholarship eligibility for the second year of college with the addition of practice and film sessions added to their freshman year class schedule? It will probably be 2018 before we know for sure.

Academic redshirts will be required to pass nine hours in the first semester or quarter of school to be eligible to continue practicing in the next term of enrollment.

Earning a Fourth Season of Competition

Nonqualifiers may only compete in their sport for three years. However, if these students complete 80 percent of their chosen major area of study prior to beginning their fifth year of college, the students may earn back their fourth year of competitive eligibility.

Core Courses after Graduation

High school students will still be allowed to complete one core course after high school graduation and before collegiate enrollment, as long as the course is completed prior to one year after the date of high school graduation, and use that course to meet the 16 core course or GPA requirement.

Students with diagnosed education learning-impacting disabilities may still complete up to three core courses after high school graduation and use those courses to fulfill the core course and GPA requirements.

Standardized Test Scores

While there are over 800 colleges and universities that do not require a SAT or ACT score to be admitted, you cannot receive an athletic scholarship without a test score.

For the SAT, the NCAA only uses the scores from the critical reading and math sections. It does not use the writing score at all. The new sliding scale will require students to score 180 points higher on every step of the scale.

While the ACT reports scores that range from 0 to 36, the NCAA uses a sum score of the ACT sections for its certification process. Therefore, ACT scores range from 37 to 93 for NCAA eligibility purposes.

For example, if you scored a 18 on English, 19 on math, 18 reading and a 15 on science, your ACT composite score would be an 18. However the NCAA will add 19 + 18 + 15 + 15 to get 70. On the current sliding scale a 70 ACT score requires a 2.435 to 2.45 GPA. On the new sliding scale a 70 ACT score will require a 2.875 to 2.9 GPA.

Highlights of the New Initial Eligibility Certification Rules

Ten of 16 core courses must be completed before beginning senior year;

7 of the 10 core courses must be in English, Math and Natural Science;

Students with GPA's between 2.0 and 2.3 cannot receive an athletic scholarship in their first year of college;

Test scores on the sliding scale have drastically increased. For example:

Current Sliding Scale New Sliding Scale
GPA SAT ACT GPA SAT ACT
3.5 420 39 3.5 600 50
3.25 530 46 3.25 700 57
3.0 620 52 3.0 800 66
2.75 720 59 2.75 900 75
2.5 820 68 2.5 1000 85
2.3 900 75 2.3 1080 93
2.2 940 79 N/A N/A N/A
2.0 1020 86 N/A N/A N/A



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