March 3, 2016

Cost of Attendance Scholarships and College Volleyball

Dear Coach

You have a unique view point on college volleyball. What impact will "cost of attendance" scholarships have. Always look forward to your input.



Yours is the first question about Cost of Attendance scholarships which I have received.  

My instinct is that the impact will just be icing on the cake for those players who have the skill sets to receive a scholarship to a program which can afford cost of attendance.  The cost of attendance (COA) supplement, will only provide larger separation between the haves and have nots of NCAA Division I athletics.

It is my understanding that each school will set its COA amount (I don't know how the NCAA or conferences would justify a blanket number because life in Los Angels/New York is more expensive than Wichita/Omaha). So, there can be some noticeable difference in the COA amounts, as there are noticeable difference is the geo-economic conditions of each school.

The major conferences will provide the COA, so they will all be on same recruiting level.  The mid-majors who are all trying to take that next step towards ESPN Sports Center highlights seem to be also providing COA, but it can come down to a per school decision.  And, the lower DI schools are just as always, using smoke and mirrors to try and compete.

In terms of the COA having an impact on a recruit's decision to attend or not attend a school, that is a tougher question to answer.  On one hand, a few grand a year to cover pens, paper, iPads and midnight pizza delivery would always be welcome, but I can't see a family choosing lessor fit for their daughter just to garner a few extra dollars.

I think the biggest impact is where two schools are even (if there is such a thing) and one school has COA and one doesn't.  For instance, would a player sacrifice the opportunity to be an impact player at a lower DI so she could obtain a COA at a mid-major but have to be a practice player for a year or two?

The rich will get richer, the poor will struggle and the middle class of volleyball will keep scratching and clawing for recognition and support.  I had to put "volleyball" in the last sentence, so VolleyFolks did not think I was commenting on the Presidential Campaigns…..


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