Recently there was a post talking about the potential to play college basketball. What struck me as out of place regarding this post was the fact that the person said “he is not really into the basketball scene but think that it is something that he could play in college.” After having played four years of college basketball myself, I find a big problem with that comment.
No matter what sport you play at the college level, the time you are going to have to put into it is pretty impressive. It doesn’t matter if it Division III to Junior College to Division I, each and every player and coach involved logs a ton of hours. And unless it is something that you are going to be into, it may not be a good move to even consider playing it.
At the Division III level of basketball, lets say that you practice for two hours each day for six days a week. That is twelve hours a week from somewhere around October 15th until at least late February (That depends on how good your team is and when your conference tournament is). If all you do is practice those two hours per day, six hours per week, that is 192 hours of basketball.
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That doesn’t count watching film, lifting weights for basketball, extra shooting, going to the training room, and talking to the coaches. That is the very minimum of things that you would have to do. For me, unless I really love something, there is no possible way that I can spend 192 hours doing something that I am not really into.
This holds true for all sports and is not just a basketball thing. In order to play college athletics, even at the non scholarship Division III level, you have to log a lot of time to be able to get on the court or the field. So unless you heart is totally into that sport, you are going to be wasting your time. I can promise you that this is going to be a lot more serious than playing the sport in high school. The coaches will be more demanding and the class work will be more demanding as well.
I wrote an article about this recently but one story that I want to bring up was an athlete who is in the process of following his heart. He was a small school standout in football and basketball but grew up loving hoops. He was a little undersized for basketball but had the perfect frame for football. This athlete started focusing more on the recruiting attention for football and ended up with multiple Division II scholarship offers.
But instead of taking the money, his heart was in basketball. He turned down the Division II schools and has been focusing on playing Junior College basketball. It may not have been the best choice in terms of dollars and cents but this athlete followed his heart. I hope he is able to end up at a great school following his Junior College run because few athletes would have the determination and focus to do that.
The moral of this article is that unless you can fake your way through hours everyday of something you don’t enjoy, you need to love the sport you play at the college level.
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