D1 Football Opportunity

Cadet35

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Hey folks, wanted to seek some advice on here.

Rising Junior in AROTC and I have an opportunity to be rostered on a D1 football team this fall. Is this a smart move that I should go through with? It’s a cool opportunity but obviously my greatest passion lies in the Army. I likely won’t get much if any playing time and just not sure if it’s worth the experience. Don’t want to get behind ROTC wise either as your 3 year is critical. Thoughts?
 
Hey folks, wanted to seek some advice on here.

Rising Junior in AROTC and I have an opportunity to be rostered on a D1 football team this fall. Is this a smart move that I should go through with? It’s a cool opportunity but obviously my greatest passion lies in the Army. I likely won’t get much if any playing time and just not sure if it’s worth the experience. Don’t want to get behind ROTC wise either as your 3 year is critical. Thoughts?
Know how much time would be invested in football and decide if that is feasible. Most D1 FB programs are a full time job. Also, consider your risk of getting a serious injury that could keep you out of the Army. The risk is real.
 
Hey folks, wanted to seek some advice on here.

Rising Junior in AROTC and I have an opportunity to be rostered on a D1 football team this fall. Is this a smart move that I should go through with? It’s a cool opportunity but obviously my greatest passion lies in the Army. I likely won’t get much if any playing time and just not sure if it’s worth the experience. Don’t want to get behind ROTC wise either as your 3 year is critical. Thoughts?
Recommend you talk to your cadre about it, most importantly your PMS. You will need buy-in from them to make it work.
 
Hey folks, wanted to seek some advice on here.

Rising Junior in AROTC and I have an opportunity to be rostered on a D1 football team this fall. Is this a smart move that I should go through with? It’s a cool opportunity but obviously my greatest passion lies in the Army. I likely won’t get much if any playing time and just not sure if it’s worth the experience. Don’t want to get behind ROTC wise either as your 3 year is critical. Thoughts?
DS was in similar boat coming out of HS. It's going to sound strange, but if your asking the question, then there's your answer.

D1 football even at some of the lowest levels like the Pioneer League is a grind. A huge time commitment. You have to really want it and be passionate about football. Additionally, the unit is going to have to be ok with the missed rotc time because you will miss a lot. And, if you are more passionate about rotc, do you want to miss those sessions, that team building, that occurs over time?
 
Unless you're a punter or long snapper, I'd simply avoid the risk of injury that is significant. Unless you're in a position to pay back your scholarship if you have one, and are OK if you won't serve due to injury DQ. *Yes, those positions have risk, too, but less.

The low risk path here would have been to play your freshman year, when you can walk away from ROTC before the start of your junior year without penalty. Now you're "on the hook" for the moneys paid by potential recoupment or service.
 
Club and intramurals are a LOT of fun!! And can be a team with company mates. Less pressure. More bonding with your unit. Beer. You get the picture.

All of my kids had the opportunity to do their sport at the collegiate level. One perused it (one injured, one Covid, blah blah blah), but left after a year (at a SA, but same concept) because of the lost opportunities to spend time with his company mates. He valued that. For certain, his happiness level increased playing on a dodgeball team with his buddies. And my other (SA, but same concept) really had a lot of fun on the company basketball team. Making it quite far in tournaments, lots of hoopla!!

D1 sports ARE a full time job. Especially with D1 football, getting banged up on a practice squad (you said you won’t suit up) is quite a risk!!! I know all four of my kiddos found ample enjoyment, fulfillment, pride and camaraderie with their competitive intramurals.

That’s my mom of 4, 3 who played football, add!!
 
I don’t disagree with the risk, like the risk that will come with a lot of military training,

but I am wondering if this same “don’t” advice that is given , would be given to all the USAFA, USMA, USNA, etc students who are playing tackle football today either varsity or sprint?

Many of whom do not play in the games on Saturday.
 
Idk if you are talking to me, but if so, yes. I would offer the same advice.

Football is brutal. And the opportunity for the kind of injury sustained in football play is different than most sports. One thing to consider no matter where you play.

A difference is that at a SA encompasses their team as part of their whole military training. Their whole experience. The relationship between the sport/athlete, education and ultimate commissioning of them, is ‘all in’ between the sport and the SA.

That relationship is different between the sport/athlete and their ROTC program. The sport/athlete is supported ‘all in’ with the school, but not necessarily with the military aspect/program (ROTC).

At a SA, the entire team is military, as is the school.

It’s a different set up between military and athlete at a regular college. School-athlete-military. Vs school-athlete at a SA. Not saying it couldn’t be done. But it would for certain be more challenging. The two school entities have differing missions. But my advice as to the risk with playing D1 football is the same. Especially if on the practice squad (who presumably doesn’t receive the nice perks afforded to the starters…).

It’s all about risk vs reward. It’s a personal decision! But that’s a separate issue (which also must be considered) from how it all works with also trying to commission as an Officer. Lots of pieces of this puzzle to put together for OP.
 
@NavyHoops tells this story: Of the group of plebes who started with her USNA varsity team, only a couple remained four years later. The others quit as the pressures of being a mid, and other reasons, outweighed the joy and glory of being a varsity athlete. For many — those whose careers aren’t ended by injury — the lack of playing time just isn’t worth the sacrifice.

“Being rostered” is certainly an accomplishment. D1 sports are very high level, and that’s worthy of celebration. But it also implies a paucity of playing time. Is that worth a “full-time job” that can endanger your real full-time job that awaits (due to injury, academics, etc.)? Think about the impact on your ROTC relationships, fitness and OOM, then decide from there.
 
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Unless you're a punter or long snapper, I'd simply avoid the risk of injury that is significant. Unless you're in a position to pay back your scholarship if you have one, and are OK if you won't serve due to injury DQ. *Yes, those positions have risk, too, but less.

The low risk path here would have been to play your freshman year, when you can walk away from ROTC before the start of your junior year without penalty. Now you're "on the hook" for the moneys paid by potential recoupment or service.
I'm going to ask a dumb question and with a child in last year of ROTC, I am embarrassed to admit I should know the answer, but if a contracted kid gets hurt outside of ROTC activities (i e. intramural sports, weekend ski trip, etc) and cannot commission, they have to pay back their scholarship money?
 
I'm going to ask a dumb question and with a child in last year of ROTC, I am embarrassed to admit I should know the answer, but if a contracted kid gets hurt outside of ROTC activities (i e. intramural sports, weekend ski trip, etc) and cannot commission, they have to pay back their scholarship money?
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I'm going to ask a dumb question and with a child in last year of ROTC, I am embarrassed to admit I should know the answer, but if a contracted kid gets hurt outside of ROTC activities (i e. intramural sports, weekend ski trip, etc) and cannot commission, they have to pay back their scholarship money?
I don’t think anyone on this board will be able to definitively answer that question. Medical DQs happen for a variety of reasons and are going to be handled as individual cases by cadre and medical. No one is expecting these folks to live wrapped up in a bubble for four years, just for them to try not to be operating completely outside the realm of common sense. Life happens.

It’s a good conversation though for your cadet to have with the cadre though to understand when/if the Army will pay for medical bills as there are generally limits there if a cadet is not considered on active duty that parents or school medical insurance can help cover gaps in. Same thing for if they commission and aren’t on active duty until BOLC or will remain in the reserves after BOLC.
 
Agree that these are the type of things that need to be discussed and considered with respect to ROTC.
An earlier post indicated that if you get hurt playing football for the school that you are attending you may have to pay your ROTC scholarship back. That was what I was essentially trying to get an idea of the accuracy of that statement. That just doesn't seem reasonable to me. There has to be plenty of people on this site with real world experience, not necessarily with football but with any sport, ROTC and injuries.
 
My son's a rising junior at a SMC. He's on an AROTC scholarship and is rostered on the D3 football program. Even at the D3 level the time demands are onerous. He'll be reporting for practice in early August and practice will fill his daylight hours until school starts. During the school year football takes time away not only from ROTC, but from academics, club and intramural participation, a social life, and pretty much eliminates the opportunity to hold a part-time job. Dedicating that kind of time to an activity with a significant risk of injury seems crazy to me. (BTW, injuries aren't limited to on-the-field impacts--four years of heavy squats, deadlifts, etc can take a toll.)
But he loves the game and bonding with the team is a big part of his social life.

When you weigh the pros and cons keep this in mind: If you decide to play, you can change your mind.
 
Agree that these are the type of things that need to be discussed and considered with respect to ROTC.
An earlier post indicated that if you get hurt playing football for the school that you are attending you may have to pay your ROTC scholarship back. That was what I was essentially trying to get an idea of the accuracy of that statement. That just doesn't seem reasonable to me. There has to be plenty of people on this site with real world experience, not necessarily with football but with any sport, ROTC and injuries.
Your officers in training hopefully read their ROTC service contract and their ROD or rule book, and understand the rules of recoupment.

The reality is that once one on scholarship shows up for day 1 of sophomore year (does not drop before that). They are potentially in the hook for recoupment if all finds or a service obligation.

The PAS, PNS, PMS recommendation and review board findings will weigh on the outcome.

I’m in the joyful place of a mechanic as my DWs check engine light came on, but search this board for recoupment and injury and you’ll see some informative posts.

I do know that avoidability is an aspect, as is pre existing. A friend of DS was. A passenger in an auto accident at OCS round 1. Leg broken. Immediately assured no recoupment if he didn’t heal ( he just finished OCS this month/ is healed). Not his fault

Another young man broke his neck in a middle of the night mud football game. Perhaps alcohol fueled. He was on the hook to repay after graduation. Avoidable.
I agree that any specific questions should be discussed with chain of command but read the rod and contract.

The reality is if they just allowed medical DQ and no recoupment there potentially would be a lot of difficult to disprove diagnoses arising in the months before commissioning. Back alignment, shin splints, migraines, knee hyper extension, et al. The same diagnoses that people use to save face on early exits from NsI and these programs, psychosomatic or real. There are young people for whom the opportunity to serve is a dream, and there are others who would game the system if allowed. It happens.
 
I'm going to ask a dumb question and with a child in last year of ROTC, I am embarrassed to admit I should know the answer, but if a contracted kid gets hurt outside of ROTC activities (i e. intramural sports, weekend ski trip, etc) and cannot commission, they have to pay back their scholarship money?
Please see my post from yesterday- I'm not sure what branch we're talking about but each has their own contract and rules like the following official example:

41 references to recoupment in that doc - pretty specific. Hopefully each person who signed a contract in ROTC understands their obligations that may include paying back moneys, service commitment.

Yes, in ROTC if you are not doing something ROTC training related and get injured or PRB'd by doing something avoidable, you may be on the hook to repay that scholarship. See posts from others often relating to civic incidents (arrests), fighting, drugs/ alcohol, injuries, grades, lateness/absense, and the bottom line is these scholarships are not "free", they come with a service obligation (or many like my DS see that service as an opportunity, not obligation). 4 year scholarship winners can walk away before the start of their second year with a "Free" tryout year, but otherwise, you're committed. if you can't pay it back with that service as you can't meet the standards, you may be handed a bill. Everyone looking at schools should think about that when exploring over 80k per year schools. can you pay all monies back if this doesn't work out? Are you aware when you accept the ROTC scholarship, that merit monies offered to high schoolers if they don't take it aren't just waiting for the person to reclaim, they can evaporate? If ROTC doesn't work out, a young person can go from having a full academic ride in ROTC and say an 80% covered ride in merit/ financial aid, to finding themselves with neither as the college may say "sorry, we used that money elsewhere".

Good luck.
 
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DS attends a school with a D1 program and had a classmate (same year) on the football team. Kid couldn't keep up during MSI and MSII years and as a result is fairly low on his school's OML (according to DS). There are probably a lot of reasons for this but one clearly is the time commitment the football program requires.

MSIII year is a big year for you. You are now responsible for mentoring the Jr. cadets. You will have at least 2 (if not 3) FTX and also have to prepare for Advance Camp. Consider these on top of all the other reasons listed above.
 
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