On average, the typical BYU student athlete puts in anywhere from 30 to 40 hours a week to perform their sport. This not only includes practice time, but countless meetings, doctor/trainer appointments and competitions. Even with this amount of time designated to train, student athletes are expected to maintain a passing GPA while being in at least 12 credit hours. Failure to do so makes any player ineligible for at least a semester, which can ruin an entire season.
Being at BYU, most of our student athletes participate in LDS activities throughout the week as well. Add this to trying to get eight hours of sleep each day and other social events, and there is almost no time left over in the week for a job. Yet many of our student athletes are forced to get one, as there are usually about eight full scholarships to be divided among about 20 people on each team.
BYU should more fully compensate our student athletes by giving them the scholarships more commonly designated to freshmen. Our athletes bring us national recognition and $5 million of revenue each year. Athletes are almost incapable of supporting themselves otherwise, as they simply do not have the time to do so.
Lastly, our athletes should be rewarded for their ability to perform academically and athletically. It shouldn’t feel like more of a curse than a blessing to be an athlete at an exceptional D1 school such as BYU.
(Sophomore on BYU’s women’s swim team)