AFA Athletics


10-Year Member
5-Year Member
Dec 29, 2008
Everyone at the Academy has to participate in sports/athletics, but which has more advantages- being an IC (intercollegiate) or playing intramural? The practice schedules for IC are pretty intense (from what I hear), but then again there are some advantages (from what I hear)... as in you don't have to eat at attention :smile: And also you can actually say... "Yeah I play for Air Force."
But then again intramurals are pretty fun and are also a good way to blow off steam w/o such an intense schedule (again, from what I hear). So really could you go wrong either way? Does anybody know more about the athletics there or have experience? How hard is it to walk- on?
Thanks bulldog300. I was wondering the same thing. Just to add to that more specifically, does anyone know if USAFA has a JV men's lacrosse team? I really want to keep playing, but I'm not a D-I player.

Haha, I also have that question. I want to walk-on for Baseball if possible, but don't know how to go about doing that...
Well; my son is an IC and his 2 room mates aren't and did the Intramural athletics. They both have their pros and cons. 1st; To be an IC you have to be recruited or depending on the sport, they might have walk-ons. So realize it's not like you have a choice. You're either IC or you're not. If you aren't, then you do intramural sports.

2nd; intramural sports is only a couple of days a week; you get to CHANGE activities after a certain time period. I.e. you can start off playing flag football and then a little later on change to volleyball or basketball. IC is what you do all the time.

3rd; IC when you are "Out of season" will usually have you doing mostly weight room type of conditioning. Some sport. I.e. Now that football season is over, my son will spend a lot of time in the weight room. Maybe a couple of days a week they will do some actual football practicing; possibly indoors.

4th; IC has all their classes in the morning hours so they can do practice/conditioning in the afternoons. You get done late. Eat. And stay up till all hours trying to get your homework done and study for tests. (Little easier in the off season, but still stressful)

5th; Normal non-IC cadets have a lot more time for themselves and for homework and such. I.e. Football had practices on Saturdays prior to the bowl game; students were released for christmas on Tuesday the 16th, while football players didn't get to leave to go home until 2 days later. Those going to the Bowl game today; went home on the 18th and the day AFTER christmas was on a plane to Dallas/Ft Worth to practice for 5 days and played today. They come home tomorrow or late today and gets to stay home a WHOLE 3 days and then go back to the academy with everyone else.

6th; IC is like a full time job that you are fighting to keep. In the off season; my son is practicing on his own every morning at 5:00am for an hour. Then goes back up to the Hill to get ready for breakfast and school. Then he practices/conditions in the afternoons. Then he prays that come spring practice that he isn't cut from the team. (Many will be). Of course then he will just start doing intramural activities and have more time for himself.

I could go on with other things. The point is; BOTH have ADVANTAGES. ONLY IC has DISADVANTAGES. Intramural doesn't have any negatives. There's a lot of IC football players who quit/cut from the team and wind up doing Rugby because it's fun and they are tough. My son's BCT flight really liked having quite a few football players in their flight. Made a lot of the physical competitions nicer.

Major negative. There are quite a few cadets who AREN'T in IC athletics who have a bad attitude towards IC athletes. Yes, there are some times when an IC athlete might be excused from an inspection or similar because it conflicts with a scheduled event. Most cadets understand. They realize that some of those little perks in no way make up for the 5-6 hours a day that many of these students put in and the extra hours they have to spend on academics because they are behind. My son and many of his team mates have spent a lot of time in the locker room before practice helping each other with home work and such. Anyway; take it as you may. The biggest thing however is that it's not really like you have a choice. If you aren't a recruited athlete, then it's really difficult to become a walk on. Not impossible, but much more difficult. Then, once you are on the team, it's really difficult to stay on the team. Best of luck. later... mike....
No, the coaches recruited him during High School. His was a little unique however. Before the coach actually "Blue Chip" him (Recruited him to play for air force) in November; he had just received his Appointment to the academy. Remember, most people receive their appointments in March-April. He received his the 1st week in November and the coach contacted him officially a week later to recruit him. But the coach had been in contact since the summer. The teams have recruiters just like any normal college. They contact high school coaches and such to find out if there are any students that are standouts on the team. If yes, if they'd be interested in the academy. Just like a normal recruiter. Like I said; my son already had his appointment prior to the final recruiting.

FWIW; The football team does have a walk on day right after BCT. It's a one day period where you can try out. Basketball would probably be easier to contact because there's a lot more time between BCT and basketball season. Football season starts 3 days after BCT. later... mike....
Problem is, I come from a smaller school, so I don't think there are a great deal of coaches contacting our school. And we haven't had the same head coach for the last 3 years. 2 got fired, our new one is probably here to stay, since he is such a good coach.
IC has all their classes in the morning hours so they can do practice/conditioning in the afternoons. You get done late. Eat. And stay up till all hours trying to get your homework done and study for tests.
Wow and I'm stressing out about having AP Calc and soccer next semester :)
I filled out the questionnaire online but I'm pretty sure I won't be recruited any time soon... I need to worry about the appointment first!
Thanks for the info
Wow and I'm stressing out about having AP Calc and soccer next semester :)
I filled out the questionnaire online but I'm pretty sure I won't be recruited any time soon... I need to worry about the appointment first!
Thanks for the info

AP Calc, AP lit, human anatomy, THEN soccer for me :p
Yeah I'm not looking forward to reading Les Miserables for AP Lit this semester... there's gonna be some long nights ahead I guess :(
Yes, it can definitely be tough. But to be honest with you, when I asked my son how tough it was with time management, he said it's just like it was in high school for him. He was in the IB program, so all classes except 1 elective, are IB advanced classes. He started high school every day at 7:00am; done with school at 3pm; Football practice (Soccer in the spring) until about 6:00 pm; get home about 6:30 - 7:00pm; eat dinner; watch TV (While eating dinner); 8pm take a shower; somewhere after 8:30pm start doing home work. Do that until midnight. Go to bed and wake up at 6:00 am. Start the whole day over again. Friday night football game then hang out with girlfriend. Saturday spend time with family. Sunday do homework that is due on Monday.

Now; wake up at 4:45am. Jog down to the field house. (Self Practice) football until 6:00am. Take a quick shower. Back to the hill. Go off to breakfast. Go to classes until around noon. Go to lunch. Free till about 1:30pm. Hike back down to the field house for football practice. (Off season combination conditioning and some practice). During the season, get off of practice around 5-6pm. Take another shower. Back to the hill for dinner. Back to the dorms around 6:30-7pm. Homework until about 10pm. Chat with dad and/or girlfriend online MSN messenger for about 15 minutes. In bed by around 11pm. Normal academy inspections and/or other things on the weekends. Football games on Saturday. Sunday is to catch up on homework due on Monday. Start the week all over again.

He still gets about 6 hours sleep from IB in HS to academy and football. The rest of the day is non-stop. That's why a large percentage of athletes quit the team their 1st year even before having the chance of being cut. Even athletes had to have grades, applications, nominations, etc.... to get an appointment to the academy. Difference from a traditional college is they didn't get a scholarship for athletics. So they can quit or get cut and still continue with their education and become military commissioned officers. There are athletes in all 4 years of the academy that have quit. Even seniors on the team. Nobody dogs an athlete who says; "I can't do all of this. I need to quit and concentrate on my grades". The longer you are there, the more you understand and appreciate it. Anyway; best of luck to you. Mike.....
My sons were seen at a competition by the AF coach and then filled out the questionnaire online. The coach remembered them and contacted them.

Being an IC athlete really does take a tremendous amount of time. And, there was a change this fall - the 4-digs must eat at attention, at least at lunch, even if they are IC's. For my sons, they are up early working on their gear, weights, sprints, etc., then start classes first thing in the a.m. They did get excused from one SAMI because they were in CA at a tournament, and their roommates were happy about that, since they were excused too.

I think the most difficult thing for mine has been keeping up academically while traveling. That is tough. They travel several hours, get into a motel, study study study, go to the tournament all the next day, study at night, go to the tournament a second day, travel, get back to The Hill late, study, go to bed.

It is tough, especially if one is in a sport where the season is Sept - June, with Nationals in July.

The best skill to have is indeed time management. If you can master that, you will succeed (in anything!).