When parents sign their children up for little league teams, they have no way of knowing if the experience will lead to a lifetime love of competitive activities or if it will be a single summer commitment. 

While some kids are drawn into the world of athletics, others prefer another path. The opportunities to grow through recreational programs into high school undoubtedly raise the question of trying their skill at the next level. 

The NCAA asks a lot of its athletes, but it is not without distinction. If you are wondering if playing a sport in college is suitable for you or your family, consider these six perks. 

Financial Support

It is essential to recognize upfront that not every graduating senior will be offered a full scholarship to a Division I school. 

That said, even if you begin with private student loans, there is always a chance that your performance on the field will lead to another form of financial support. 

Colleges and universities can cover the cost of books for some non-scholarship athletes. In addition, over time, they may be willing to pay for portions of room and board to offset those bills. 

Any relief is typically welcomed when faced with mounting debt.

Physical Activity

Another option for staying active in post-secondary settings is joining a club team. Often these rosters are made up of people who play a sport in high school but are not interested in the demands of a collegiate varsity spot. 

Intramurals provide a reason to work out and have fun without such a serious obligation. 

If you cannot bring your equipment from home, consider purchasing new baseball gloves, cleats, sneakers, or other gear, so you are ready for a game as soon as you arrive on campus.

Academic Monitoring

It is hard for some young people to adjust to a lifestyle without a parent or guardian staring over their shoulders. 

One nice aspect of having a coach is that there will still be someone around to check on grades and ensure you meet your obligations. Some teams will help you set up a schedule and plan study hours if you struggle at first.  


Whether you are looking at nearby colleges and universities or a few that are further away, once you decide to be a part of their athletic department, you will have the chance to travel to other schools around the country for competitions. 

Division III programs tend to stay in their region, but even that will expose you to different towns and cities you might not have otherwise visited. 

Seeing unfamiliar places is a great way to learn about where you may want to settle down in the future and teaches you about how diverse communities live. 

Cementing Relationships

Team members spend a great deal of time together between the opening days of pre-season through the final push to the postseason. During that time, you may forge friendships that will last many years. 

As each of you pursues your degrees and then starts a career, you can look back at the connections you made. Networking is important in growing a business and moving up in your industry. 

Calling on those you knew well in college lets you forgo the need to break the ice and establish a trusting relationship. 

You may find that you can ask for a reference or make a recommendation for someone because you know their work ethic and can vouch for their character.


Most teens have a decent understanding of themselves by the time they finish twelfth grade. 

At the same time, they do not yet have a grasp on who they will become as their journey continues. Leaving the comfort of home forces them to look inward and make decisions that will be the basis of whatever comes next.


Playing a sport in college requires time, energy, and hard work. There will be days when you do not want to get out of bed and sweat through a grueling practice. 

However, the rewards and bonuses may be worth the price.


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