"Put Me In, Coach" by Laurie Richter
exerpt from Chapter 8: Money Concerns
For each sport, there are a maximum number of scholarships allowed. This doesn’t mean that each school must offer this many scholarships; it means that by NCAA rule a school is limited to that many. Schools may choose to offer fewer, none, or not offer the sport at all. The allotment is generally less for Division II schools than Division I schools, which is one of the reasons why it is harder to get a full ride in a Division II school. Following are the allotments by sport:
You may be wondering why some of the figures in the preceding chart are not whole numbers. There are two different designations: equivalency sports and headcount sports. For a headcount sport, each athlete on scholarship counts toward the maximum headcount the school can have on scholarship, so whether a player is given a full athletic scholarship or given only one dollar, s/he is counted toward the headcount for that sport. Since a men’s basketball team can only have thirteen scholarship athletes in their headcount, a school might as well offer thirteen full scholarships so it can attract the thirteen best players possible. For headcount sports, full scholarships are more common. The list is not long. Men’s headcount sports are basketball and football, and women’s headcount sports are basketball, gymnastics, tennis, and volleyball.
For an equivalency sport, coaches have a certain total dollar amount in the “scholarship pot,” but can split it up among multiple athletes in any proportions they want. They can carry more athletes on partial scholarships and this provides the opportunity to develop more players. It is harder to get a full scholarship in an equivalency sport because it is in the coach’s best interest to use the allotment of scholarship money to get as many highpotential athletes on the team as possible. Every other sport offered at the collegiate level not mentioned above as a headcount sport is an equivalency sport. Look back at the chart for a minute. You will notice that D-I men’s soccer allows 9.9 scholarships and D-I men’s volleyball allows 4.5. With eleven soccer players on the fi eld at a time, and six volleyball players on a court, even all of the first string players can’t be awarded full scholarships. And don’t forget all the other players waiting on the sidelines. For most sports, partial-scholarship athletes, walk-ons, and non-scholarship athletes are an important part of the mix.
Here are links to other excerpts from chapters throughout, "Put Me In, Coach":