Being A Division I Athlete Isn't Just About Being An Athlete

Being A Division I Athlete Isn't Just About Being An Athlete

As a collegiate athlete, especially at the Division I level, you are expected to be the best of the best, not only in your sport but also in the classroom.
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"Athletes get into any school if they are good enough at their sport."

"They could just fail out of school and it would not matter at all."

Let me just start here: where everyone thinks they know exactly what they're talking about when in reality they are so far from correct.

As a collegiate athlete, especially at the Division I level, you are expected to be the best of the best, not only in your sport but also in the classroom. But in actuality, it does not matter how good you are if you do not have the grades to back you up.

We are STUDENT athletes.

No matter how much we jokingly say otherwise, school will always come first.

As an athlete, you are representing the entire school in every race, game or match, and you must wear your school's name with pride and respect. A collegiate athlete is expected to be a well-rounded student who happens to have a special talent in their particular sport.

A Division I athlete is not much different than Division II or III, except the aspect of training and maybe a little more success in high school.

Coming from a very successful and prestigious rowing team in high school, I always knew I wanted to be Division I because I was always taught to work to be the best at whatever I encounter in my life.

The 20 (or more) hours of practice a week, plus school, plus visits to Sports Med to fix any nagging pains, plus just being a college student in general, seems to take up more hours of the day then there even are to offer, but somehow we all get it done.

Somehow, at the end of the day, we are able to sit back and reflect on how lucky we are to attend the amazing school we are at and to play the sports we love so much and be truly grateful.

I think I can speak for all athletes when saying that the most rewarding feeling is when you know you are getting better. When you know you made that positive change in the right direction, that will, in turn, help you become a better athlete.

I just wanted to clear the air on the fact that student-athletes are students first, but we also are athletes who work to our fullest potential and even more because it is who we are, and our minds are and will always be set on being the best of the best.

We will stop at nothing to keep fighting for that to happen.

Cover Image Credit: Lilly O'Sullivan

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To The Coach Who Ruined The Game For Me

We can't blame you completely, but no one has ever stood up to you before.
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I know you never gave it a second thought, the idea that you're the reason I and many others, never went any farther in our athletic careers.

I know you didn’t sincerely care about our mental health, as long as we were physically healthy and our bodies were working enough to play. It’s obvious your calling wasn’t coaching and you weren’t meant to work with young adults, some who look to you as a parent figure or a confidant.

I also know that if we were to express our concerns about the empty feeling we began to feel when we stepped onto the court, you wouldn’t have taken the conversation seriously because it wasn’t your problem.

I know we can't blame you completely, no one has ever stood up to you before. No one said anything when girls would spend their time in the locker room crying because of something that was said or when half the team considered quitting because it was just too much.

We can't get mad at the obvious favoritism because that’s how sports are played.

Politics plays a huge role and if you want playing time, you have to know who to befriend. We CAN get mad at the obvious mistreatment, the empty threats, the verbal abuse, “it's not what you say, its how you say it.”

We can get mad because a sport that we loved so deeply and had such passion for, was taken away from us single-handedly by an adult who does not care. I know a paycheck meant more to you than our wellbeing, and I know in a few years you probably won’t even remember who we are, but we will always remember.

We will remember how excited we used to get on game days and how passionate we were when we played. How we wanted to continue on with our athletic careers to the next level when playing was actually fun. We will also always remember the sly remarks, the obvious dislike from the one person who was supposed to support and encourage us.

We will always remember the day things began to change and our love for the game started to fade.

I hope that one day, for the sake of the young athletes who still have a passion for what they do, you change.

I hope those same athletes walk into practice excited for the day, to get better and improve, instead of walking in with anxiety and worrying about how much trouble they would get into that day. I hope those athletes play their game and don’t hold back when doing it, instead of playing safe, too afraid to get pulled and benched the rest of the season.

I hope they form an incredible bond with you, the kind of bond they tell their future children about, “That’s the coach who made a difference for me when I was growing up, she’s the reason I continued to play.”

I don’t blame you for everything that happened, we all made choices. I just hope that one day, you realize that what you're doing isn’t working. I hope you realize that before any more athletes get to the point of hating the game they once loved.

To the coach that ruined the game for me, I hope you change.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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Folsom Street Fair

Only in San Francisco

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On September 30th there was an event on Folsom Street in San Francisco. This fair took place on Folsom street between 8th and 13th Street. I never even knew this type of fair went on until my friend invited me and said it would be fun. I got dressed as for every event that we attend in San Francisco.

Folsom Street Fair | Thomas Hawk | Flickr

Leather Loving!

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Folsom Street Fair | Thomas Hawk | Flickr

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!!

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Skin Skin Skin!!! c1.staticflickr.com


What is the Folsom Street Fair? The Folsom Street Fair is the world's biggest leather event in San Francisco. There were over 200 booths showcasing fetish, kinky gear and toys on these streets. There was live music, dancing areas, acts, and games happening all over. No money is necessary to get in but a ten dollar donation is optional for two dollar discounts on every drink purchased. These funds are raised for national and Bay-area charities. It does only occur once a year.

It was my first time ever experiencing this and it was actually very interesting. I saw a lot of flesh and leather. What I noticed most was that there was a lot of love all over the air. Literally smelled like sweat and skin. There were your occasional "don't touch me" people but everyone else seemed to be having a blast - being in the nude. I am speechless because I never thought I'd be able to attend this type of fair. I tried something new and it was interesting to be a part of this year.

I recommend for people that are only open to new things and to the thought that they will be touching a lot of people in the nude. It was a whole community of people and even people from different countries come to this event. It is the biggest leather even that occurs and it is known to value sexual freedom and diversity.

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