Athletic Scholarship offered from University while waiting for Appointment to USAFA

JRS92078

Member
My DS is currently undergoing the Application Process with USAFA. He is a recruited athlete; however, his desire to be at the Academy extends far beyond wanting to do his sport while at USAFA. He is also being recruited by other Universities as well. He has just received his 1st Official D1 Athletic Scholarship Offer. While he understands that an appointment at USAFA is not guaranteed, we also do not want him to lose out on other opportunities waiting for an appointment that may not come. At all his Official Visits at other Universities, he asks to meet and tour their ROTC Programs. They know he is an applicant for USAFA. Any suggestions or guidance as to how best to handle this type of situation would be greatly appreciated. Are there any rules that say universities have to release a kid if they receive an appointment to a SA? I have not been able to locate any threads yet with this scenario as of yet. Thank you!
 
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time2

10-Year Member
Lots of older threads on this subject, some more contentious than others.....LOL. Try searching fewer words in your search criteria. Words like 'scholarship' or 'recruiting' will yield more results versus very specific criteria. Many colleges understand the SA application takes longer and being honest with them is generally a good idea.
 

JRS92078

Member
time2 thank you!! I will try that. My son has been very open with them. I'm just afraid they are going to time limit this scholarship offer to get him to commit to them and NOT USAFA. Once he commits then his recruiting is over, if I am understanding correctly. He heads out to USAFA next week for his Official Visit - I am sending him with a list of questions for the coach :)
 
My daughter was in the same boat last year - 4 full ride scholarships, one to USAFA. She went with her heart and declined the other 3 knowing that she may not make it through but also knowing that it was her first choice. It's a tough journey, but she felt the right one to have one path and fully commit. My recommendation is to go with your heart and give 100% to the effort, like the 2021 motto - No Doubt. No Fear.
 

another13mom

10-Year Member
If you have had DODMERB exam and know your son is medically qualified, reach out to his assigned Academy admission's officer or Academy recruiting coach and have a frank discussion about chances. You should be able to glean some information that will aid in a decision. My D attempted to sidestep the issue with an offer from a great school but in the long run declined because recruiting coach wouldn't extend a decision deadline to await academy decision (first choice). It worked out but definitely would have been a bummer if it didn't.
 

JRS92078

Member
If you have had DODMERB exam and know your son is medically qualified, reach out to his assigned Academy admission's officer or Academy recruiting coach and have a frank discussion about chances. You should be able to glean some information that will aid in a decision. My D attempted to sidestep the issue with an offer from a great school but in the long run declined because recruiting coach wouldn't extend a decision deadline to await academy decision (first choice). It worked out but definitely would have been a bummer if it didn't.
We did, the coach was able to check what is application score was (not sure how) and said he was good. He signed his Letter of Intent on Wednesday and very hopeful to be at the Prep School next year.
 

In-the-Know

5-Year Member
My DS is currently undergoing the Application Process with USAFA. He is a recruited athlete; however, his desire to be at the Academy extends far beyond wanting to do his sport while at USAFA. He is also being recruited by other Universities as well. He has just received his 1st Official D1 Athletic Scholarship Offer. While he understands that an appointment at USAFA is not guaranteed, we also do not want him to lose out on other opportunities waiting for an appointment that may not come. At all his Official Visits at other Universities, he asks to meet and tour their ROTC Programs. They know he is an applicant for USAFA. Any suggestions or guidance as to how best to handle this type of situation would be greatly appreciated. Are there any rules that say universities have to release a kid if they receive an appointment to a SA? I have not been able to locate any threads yet with this scenario as of yet. Thank you!
Check the NCAA website and rules for release from the National Letter of Intent for attending a service academy.
 

falconchic88

10-Year Member
NCAA does not govern the NLI program. Service Academies are not member schools in the NLI program. The NLI says if you decide to rescind your NLI and attend another NLI institution, you will forfeit a year of participation. Since Service Academies are not NLI member schools, this does not apply to them. USAFA may have you sign a Certificate of Intent, but this is not an NLI, and it is non-binding on both parties. That said, I do believe the service academies recognize the NLI from other schools, meaning, if you sign one with another school, they will not continue to recruit you. I have heard of recruits adding a stipulation in the NLI stating that it does not apply if s/he is accepted to a service academy. Be honest with the coach and let them know you are committed to attending their school IF you are not accepted to a SA.
 

Christcorp

10-Year Member
As falconchic mentioned, the academies (And Ivy League Schools) are not members of the NLI (National Letter of Intent) program. As such, anyone can sign a Letter of Intent with a school; E.g. Ohio State; and then change their mind and decide to go to the Air Force academy; or any military academy..... OR, to Harvard or other Ivy League school. With NO PENALTIES whatsoever. And the same in reverse. You can have an UNOFFICIAL commitment to the academies; or even a commitment to Harvard and the day before going to basic training or starting at Harvard; Ohio State could recruit you with absolutely no penalties. And the reason the academies and Ivy's aren't members of the NLI, is because they don't offer athletic scholarships. PLUS; membership in the NLI is strictly VOLUNTARY.

So, the NLI is a voluntary agreed upon program among participating schools. (Basically ALL schools except Ivy and academies). If an individual commits (On Paper - National Signing Day); and they change their mind later, they are basically out of college sports for a year. Unless the school they chose NOT to attend and had the NLI says it's ok. Rare, but it does happens if you're nice about it. I.e. a friend of mine was recruited, signed, accepted, etc. to USC. 3 months before school started, his mom had a stroke. He wanted to change his school to Georgia Tech and be a "Walk-On" so he could be close to home. (They are from Atlanta). He explained it to USC and they let him "Out of his NLI Commitment".

So, this is why I have no ethical or moral problem with applicants being accepted to a school and accepting it; THEN changing their mind later and deciding to go a military academy. The academies take so long to give out appointments that an individual would be foolish to NOT apply and get accepted to a school in the HOPES that they'll receive an academy appointment. Likewise, I have no problem with an individual accepting a military appointment, and after getting accepted to their #1 Traditional School, turning down the appointment. Even if they accepted it and was sitting on it for a month or two.

This isn't "Community College" or the "University of Whereverthehell". Nothing against those types of schools, but they are generally AUTOMATIC admission for ANY STATE RESIDENT. So, an individual that can get accepted and given an appointment to a military academy is EXCEPTIONAL. They aren't the basic student getting accepted to community college or their home university. These individuals have busted their A$$ for at least the last 4 years to get accepted to the academies and/or other prestigious schools. As such; it is my opinion that they have EARNED THE RIGHT to do what they believe is best for them. Whether they get to a school or academy based on athletics, academics, both, or other attribute. ACCEPT whatever you can, and then decide when you have to. For the OP of this thread, there's no penalty to accept an athletic scholarship for a traditional school and turning it down later if you get an appointment. There's nothing morally or ethically wrong with that. You've EARNED that right. it's YOUR LIFE. Do with it what's best FOR YOU. Same if an individual has an appointment to the academy. If May/June comes along, and you're accepted late from the wait list for your #1 school, then by all means turn down the academy appointment and accept the other school. Even if it's the day before leaving for basic training. You EARNED that right. it's YOUR LIFE. Do with it what's best FOR YOU.
 
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