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Should You Play Varsity Sports at the Academy?

(Athletics, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2022) Permanent link   All Posts
Jack Brunswick

When I was accepted to the Academy, I was concerned about playing a sport. Would it take away time and focus from school? Would I be able to handle it? I was recruited for basketball and am also running outdoor track this spring. At least two hours of my busy day are eaten up by athletics. Have I changed my mind about it? No. Doing sports here is one of the best decisions I've ever made. As a 4/c (freshman), we have to square corners, greet upper-class, and do lots of other 4/c duties. Especially as a freshman, the time I spend each day at practices, basketball games, or track meets allow me to be a normal person and feel like a kid again. It gets me out of Chase Hall, where cadets spend most of their time doing homework. The change of scenery gets me away from the hustle and bustle of the Academy on weekends and gives me something to look forward to at the end of each school day.

Although my sports take time away from studying and doing homework, I have become much more effective at completing my assignments. Most of the stress of school comes from procrastination and contemplation of the work I have to do, but with sports I do not have time to do that. Instead, I get back to my room from practice and logistically have to do my work and studies efficiently. Otherwise, I believe I would be wasting my time procrastinating, would have more stress built up, and wouldn't be in great shape.

Lastly, being a part of a team has provided me with a close support network. You are able to learn the ins and outs of the Academy from upper-classmen quickly and they are there as role models to help you along the most difficult year at the Academy. If I can manage two varsity sports and still succeed academically, you can too! Don't be afraid to go out for the sport you grew up playing or try something completely new. Sports have always been an important part of my life and contribute to my overall well-being and happiness. The rigor of the Coast Guard Academy shouldn't discourage you from playing sports – being active in the athletics community here has improved my experience as a freshman tremendously.