When it comes to college football programs, the big money-makers like LSU, Florida, and Georgia often get the limelight. But what about smaller colleges? How are they able to generate revenue? In this report, the athletic director of Nicholls State University, located in the heart of Cajun country talks about how they are able to keep playing and paying the price to stay in the game.
All In The Game
Football, basketball, baseball, gymnastics. College sports are a way of life in the South. Fans pack into stadiums or glue themselves to televisions to watch their favorite teams battle it out. But the pressure on a young person to succeed on the field or court is only half the battle. College athletes are also expected to succeed in the classroom.
All In The Game: Athletes And Schools Tackle Tougher NCAA Academic Requirements For Potential D1 Players
When it comes to Division I football, Southern states including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Louisiana, produce the largest number of recruits per capita. New NCAA rules take effect for college athletes next fall. A 2.0 GPA and a decent ACT score won’t be enough anymore. To avoid the bench, freshmen will have to come in with a 2.3 GPA in core classes — reading, math, science, and social studies. And players in high school — where standards are generally lower — are feeling it.
Across the South, college football is in full swing. But football is just one of dozens of NCAA sports. In any season, student-athletes are pushing themselves on the field, in the gym, and in the classroom. They get scholarships and generate billions of dollars. But they also get hurt and struggle with their studies on top of what’s basically a demanding full-time job. In Part One of our series, “Pressure and Performance on the Field of Play,” our Alabama reporter looks at tensions between sports and academics, through the eyes of the athletes themselves.