Track & Field Scholarships
Track and Field originates from the original olympic games which makes it one of the oldest, longest serving and most competitive collegiate sports. Track and Field is different to most collegiate sports in the NCAA, as you can be training and obtaining your degree whilst competing in the olympic games. While other sports require you to complete your degree before competing in the professional environment, college track and field athletes can compete at the highest worldwide level as long as they do not receive money for doing so. To give an example, there were 48 current track and field college athletes that competed in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, which shows the world class talent that competes within the NCAA year in and year out.
Am I eligible?
Having a high enough GPA or SAT/ACT score is the most overlooked concept by student athletes looking to be recruited. Even if you run the 100m in under 10 seconds, if you do not have the right grades, you simply will not be NCAA eligible or you will not get into the university of your dreams. If you do not have high enough grades to compete within the NCAA you will be what is called a “non qualifier” and you will then either need to improves your grades or attend a NJCAA college for two years. Once you have done this, you can then transfer to an NCAA school with more experience and ready to complete your bachelors degree. The College sports America team has a lot of experience and will help you determine which university is the best fit for you based on your athletic and academic level.
How is practice structured in America?
In general, the college teams practice up to six times a week for 2-3 hours each day. You will therefore get the best chances to improve as an athlete, with great facilities directly on campus, a private track and field stadium, and in some cases the university might also have its own indoor arena with a 200m or 400m running track.
As an athlete, you can imagine there are various types of coaches in the US. It is important that the training philosophy of you and your future coach match. However, you can be certain that you will be in professional hands. The American coaches are full-time coaches, paid by the university and can therefore devote themselves entirely to developing their student athletes.
Here are some important facts about college Track & Field and Track & Field scholarships:
- Number of NCAA Div 1 Track & Field teams: Men 278, Woman 314
- Number of NCAA Div 2 Track & Field teams: Men 151, Woman 160
- Total number of Track & Field teams (all divisions): Men 878, Woman, 951
- Scholarship limit per team: D1 Men: 12.6, D2 Men: 12.6, D1 Women: 18, D2 Women:12.6, NAIA, M&W: 12.6 NJCAA, M&W: 20
- Former College Track & Field Athletes: Jesse Owens, Carl Lewis, Michael Johnson, Ashton Eaton, Justin Gatlin