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Mike Westwood
Noodle Expert Member

March 10, 2021

This article details how a college sports player is able to manage the difficult balance of being a student and an athlete.

When it comes to playing a sport while being in college, there are many aspects that the players must deal with well enough to participate and set a good example for their college. It is vital and a necessity for the players to maintain good grades, as well as attending practice meets and games, whether said games are home or away. It is a high-pressure dynamic and one such athlete, who happens to be a close friend of mine from college, agreed to be interviewed for this article.This gentleman’s name is Dominick and he has personal experience about the lifestyle.

The first question was as far as prioritizing coursework with playing a sport in college, what did he feel is the biggest challenge. Dominick replied, “This is a challenge for any student athlete at any level, whether it be Division 1 or Division 3 or even in high school. The hardest challenge is time management, because with practice, games, classes, homework, exams, traveling, etc, it seems like there isn’t enough hours in a day, especially when you’re in the thick of a season. The key is to manage your time correctly and have a schedule throughout your week. Set aside time before and after practice to get your work done and when you pick your classes in the beginning of the semester, know when you have games and practices ahead of time to pick the right class times."

The second question was how vital is it for a college athlete to maintain good grades in their courses. Dominick replied, “It was extremely vital to maintain good grades throughout college because if you don’t get good grades, you don’t play. Especially for our coach, he made that a top priority that you get your schoolwork done and maintain good grades throughout college. We had a mandatory three-hour study hall for all freshmen and anyone under a certain GPA. You could work your way out of study hall if you had a high enough GPA and he was confident that you would get your work done."

The third question was what your main piece of advice be for a potential player of your sport entering college. Dominick replied, “I would advise them to enjoy the little things, like the conversations in the locker room, going out to dinner with your teammates after practice or a big win, because before you know it you will be a senior walking across the stage to start the real world. Overall, have fun but always work hard so the opportunity given to you doesn’t get taken away."

My friend Dominick’s experiences have bestowed him with a good amount of knowledge to be an example-setter and how to progress as an individual through being a college athlete and student. Knowing Dominick from my time attending Curry College, he set a good example for his entire team and continues to be a great friend to his former teammates and myself. Dominick’s college years demonstrate that the balance of athletics and academics is difficult, but through self-discipline, ambition, and hard work, can be achieved.

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