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The Rough Rider

Is it Worth it to Play Sports in College?


     Do you try hard and put effort into the sports you play? Do you want to make a career out of your sports life like your RIS teachers did?

     Kids in this generation are very athletic and are into multiple sports making more opportunities available like college scholarships, junior Olympics, and much more. 

     Here at Roosevelt, many teachers were college athletes. With hard work and dedication, young people can achieve great feats in their athletic careers. 

     There are also financial benefits to playing sports in college.  

     College can be expensive and according to College Data, the average cost per year for a college is $41,540.

     The average athletic scholarship for all Division 1 sports is approximately $14,270 annually for men and $15,162 for women. Division II sports, the numbers go down to $5,548 for men and $6,814 for women.

     The following teachers were athletes throughout college and they shared their struggles, achievements, and more. 

     Mrs. Giaccio was a very strong and skillful athlete and played club soccer in college at Rowan University.

     What were the struggles and positives of your experience? 

     “I am social and I like to talk and hang out with friends and soccer took up a lot of time …  I was always at practice,  games, and tournaments so when I did want to go to college, I wanted to have the full college experience. On the positive side,  I had great teammates that I have been friends with for my whole life now,” Mrs. Giaccio said. 

     Mrs. Banic was a very successful track and field athlete in college at Rutgers University.

     What did it take to become the college athlete that you were?

     “My natural god-given talent, ha ha ha, just kidding, you have to have natural ability for athleticism, drive, and determination,” Mrs. Banic stated.

     Mr. Bauch was a very talented soccer player who played club soccer in college at Rutgers University.

     What were some struggles that you faced?

     “A lot of time practices can be really strenuous and tiring, and for me, I am not a big person, so I have to compete against people that were a lot bigger than me. So I had to figure out, well if I can’t overpower or be stronger than somebody, can I do something better? I had to make sure that I was in better cardiovascular shape, and I had to be smarter about decisions on the field and not getting hit, and things like that.”.

     “What were some achievements that you accomplished?

     “I became the captain of our club team and I played all 4 years in college so I actually made a lot of really good friends people that I still play with now were from college and a lot of them went on to become coaches like I’m a coach now as well, so they went on to become head coaches at the high schools, like Cranford High School.”.

     Overall, was it worth it to join and would you recommend that students were to continue their sports into college?

     “I do think that it was worth it. Obviously, most of us go to college to get a good education, so that is the top priority, but if you’re able to balance that and still play and enjoy it, I think it’s really beneficial. I think it teaches you discipline and time management, and you can make a lot of new and really good friends. I wouldn’t say it is easy, but I would say if you can balance it, then I would recommend it.”.

     Clearly, our teacher athletes at RIS were faced with many struggles and also some achievements, but overall, all three of them can agree that it was worth it to persevere through any obstacle and continue in college sports. 

     These three teachers were dedicated, hardworking, and talented at their sports and all of the hard work paid off now making all three of them coaches here in Westfield. 

     Going into college playing a sport can greatly affect your life in so many ways. College sports can open up many opportunities like the Olympics, making lifelong friendships, coaching jobs, and even professional sports teams. 

     If you are willing to put in the hard work and dedication that it takes to become the athlete that you want to be, college sports sounds like the perfect thing for you.

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