Student athletes accept offered athletic scholarships

by Jarah Cotton, Sydney King, and Logann Houston

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Nationwide, high schools held ceremonies to honor prospecting collegiate athletes as they solidify their future schools on National Signing Day, which fell on Feb. 1, 2017.

National Signing Day has historically been held on the first Wednesday of February, and is the day on which college-bound athletes sign a National Letter of Intent, binding them to attend a university that is an active member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).

Officially committing to an institution is taken very seriously by both athletes and those adults who support them. Coaches, in particular, demonstrate their vested interest in their players’ success.

“I just made sure that they knew they would be able to fit in with the school,” head women’s basketball coach Phyllis Arthur said. “I mainly try to let them do their own choosing, I don’t want to persuade them either way.”

From an athlete’s perspective, the day symbolizes a final commitment. For many, it is a very difficult choice to make, as they are definitively deciding where they will begin the next phase of their life. Their coaches’ input is taken seriously, and many feel that it is the coaches that truly prepare them to compete at the next level.

“My coach has always told us that we have to push hard, we have to push for state, and we have to push for greatness; and it is that intensity that I feel made me ready for the next level,” senior Timothy Vanjohnson said.

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