While I recently talked about the NCAA requirements and their sliding scale that allows you do be eligible as a freshman, a big part of that scale is determined by your SAT/ACT score. While you don’t need to take both, scoring high on one of the tests will allow you to have a little more breathing room if you have a low GPA.
And while the dream for everyone is to get a scholarship that will pay for college and allow you to play the sport you love all year, that may not always work out. You may not be good enough for that scholarship coming out of high school or eventually decide to transfer out. That is where the real importance of an ACT/SAT score comes in.
Outside of receiving a full athletic scholarship (Which normally only happens at the highest ranks of Division I), there will still be a large chunk of change that you will need to find a way to pay for. The college coaches will be there helping you trying to find every loophole possible but one easy way to make sure that the price tag for your education is low is to score well on your ACT/SAT.
I have seen myself that many smaller colleges actually have a sliding scale regarding your GPA and test scores. The higher that both are, the more money that you will be given each year in an academic scholarship. And because that helps reduce the price of the school up front, it will open many more doors than if you had done poorly on these tests.
While you don’t realize it when you are 16, 17, or 18 years old, it is worth it to take as many Saturday mornings as possible. Many students may just take it once, get a passing scoring, and move on. But to get more academic money at the college level, you might as well spend a few tries at getting the highest score possible.
Looking back, I wish that I would have taken the time to take the test multiple times. I was perfectly happy with the score that I received the first time taking it and had no problem getting into any colleges that I was interested in. But I know if I had focused on it more, I could have done much better. And with that, my current student loans would be much less than what they are now.
A good example of what getting a high ACT/SAT score is that of a basketball recruit a few years back. He had some major ability to shoot the ball and had size as well. Division I schools from throughout the country were recruiting him but he wanted to stay close to home and attend State University. But because they were out of scholarships, most normal recruits would have started looking elsewhere.
Because this athlete had worked so hard in the classroom, it really paid off about the time he was getting ready for college. He ended up getting what they call a Presidential Scholarship that paid for his entire four or five years of attending college. The time that this athlete had paid off and he was going to college for free so it didn’t matter much if he was on a scholarship or not.
That scholarship ended up allowing him to go to this major Division I school and eventually start and standout. While he was plagued with injury problems during his career at the school, he wouldn’t have been able to play there without the work he had done in the classroom.
Anyways, if you are not getting a full athletic scholarship to go to college, think long and hard about if it would be worth it to spend another Saturday taking a standardized test. There are a lot more fun things that you could be doing with your time but it could save you thousands upon thousands of dollars in the long run.