Date of Graduation

8-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Education in Recreation and Sport Management (MEd)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Health, Human Performance and Recreation

Advisor

Sarah Stokowski

Committee Member

Merry Moiseichik

Second Committee Member

Brandon Jackson

Keywords

Social sciences; Experience; Football; NCAA; Recruiting; Student-athletes

Abstract

The realization for incoming freshmen to be able to balance education and participate in athletics at the college level takes complete dedication. Participation in athletics has been linked with reports of growth in the individual's personality and leadership skills and with their overall satisfaction with the college experience (Ryan, 1989). Using former student-athletes as participants, the study aims to look at college athletics through the eyes of the student-athletes.

The purpose of this study offers an inside look at former Division I football student-athletes perception of the recruiting process, along with the perception of the financial agreement and the National Letter of Intent. Although there are thousands of high school athletes that get recruited to attend a college or university every year, little is known about the recruiting experience of student-athletes. Eight former football student-athletes at an NCAA Division-I FBS institution was interviewed. Also, four significant themes emerged naturally from the interviews: feeling like a celebrity, feeling overwhelmed, lack of knowledge, trusting of coaches. The results of this study will allow those working with student-athletes to develop a greater understanding of their experience.

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