On any given college campus, there are plenty of athletic opportunities for students. Intramural and recreation leagues allow students to compete in a relaxed and social environment. Collegiate sports allow students to step into the spotlight with their performances.
Joining an intramural sport is as simple as creating a team. To play collegiate sports, often times you must be recruited by the coach of a given team; however, there is an opportunity for non-recruited students to participate.
The tryout process varies from sport to sport and university to university. Most schools have open tryouts to fill a certain number of spots. If you make the team, you become a walk-on. Walk-ons are a beneficial part of a team. Sometimes they can be just as important as the scholarship players.
They can put in as much work as other members on the team who are on scholarship. Despite this, a question going around currently is whether or not walk-on athletes should be given some sort of stipend.
It is possible for walk-on players to receive scholarship opportunities at a later point. This is far and few in between, especially at smaller schools.
Walk-ons should not receive any sort of stipend, simply because they were not recruited. Though they are working hard to make college campus sports successful, I do not believe every single member of a team should receive a stipend.
Money is the biggest reasoning behind my opinion. If every member of the team receives anything, you must consider other team expenses. There will not be enough money left over for travel and other bills the team may have.
Therefore, only certain members of the team receive stipends because they are thought to be more important. The recruited members of the team are the game changers. Though some walk-ons may be game changers as well, if they have that great of an impact, they will be presented with scholarship opportunities as well.
Not every walk-on can be a game changer, though. To receive stipends, they would have to be recognized in the first place to receive a scholarship.
Written by Kaitlyn Baich, staff writer.
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