Can You Get a Scholarship for Football: What You Need to Know

Are you a high school football player, aspiring to take your talent to the next level? Then the question that could be looming in your mind might be, ‘Can you get a scholarship for football?’ The answer is a resounding yes! With the right skills and attitude, you could secure a football scholarship and set yourself up for a career in the sport.

Football scholarships are a great way for students to further their academic and athletic endeavors. Every year, colleges and universities offer millions of dollars in football scholarships to high school athletes who show potential and demonstrate excellence both on and off the field. But what does it take to earn a football scholarship? What are the qualities coaches are looking for, and how can you stand out from the crowd?

In this article, we’ll explore the various opportunities available for football players looking to attain a scholarship. We’ll go over the different types of scholarships, their eligibility requirements, and their benefits. We’ll also discuss what you can do to increase your chances of being noticed and recruited by college coaches. Whether you’re a quarterback, running back, or a lineman, this article will provide valuable information to help you achieve your scholarship dreams.

Football Scholarships for Student-Athletes

For high school football players with dreams of playing collegiate or professional football, a football scholarship can make all the difference. These scholarships provide financial assistance for tuition, fees, and other college expenses, giving student-athletes the opportunity to focus on academics and athletics without the added financial stress. However, securing a football scholarship is not easy and requires a lot of hard work, dedication, and talent.

  • Types of Football Scholarships
  • There are two types of football scholarships: full-ride scholarships, which cover the entire cost of attending college, including tuition, room and board, books, and fees, and partial scholarships, which cover a portion of these expenses. Full-ride scholarships are highly competitive and are typically reserved for top-tier football programs at Division I colleges and universities. Partial scholarships are more common and are awarded based on a student-athlete’s level of talent, academic standing, and financial need.

  • Recruiting Process
  • The recruiting process for football scholarships begins early, with coaches and scouts often identifying top prospects as early as freshman year of high school. Student-athletes can increase their chances of receiving a scholarship by attending summer camps, participating in showcases and tournaments, and creating highlight reels that showcase their skills and abilities. It’s also important to maintain good grades, as academics are an important factor in the scholarship decision-making process.

  • Expectations and Responsibilities
  • Football scholarships come with high expectations and responsibilities. Student-athletes must maintain a high level of performance on the field and in the classroom, adhere to team rules and regulations, and represent their college or university with professionalism and integrity. It’s important to understand that a football scholarship is a privilege, not a right, and that it requires a lot of hard work and sacrifice.

Types of Football Scholarships Available

Football scholarships offer young athletes the chance to pursue their dreams of playing the sport they love while furthering their education. In the United States, football scholarships come in different forms, offering varying degrees of financial aid to cover tuition, room and board, and other expenses. Here are the different types of football scholarships you should know:

  • Full ride scholarships: These types of scholarships cover all expenses related to attending college, including tuition, room and board, books, and other fees. They are highly competitive and usually reserved for top-performing athletes.
  • Partial scholarships: These scholarships offer a smaller amount of financial aid and may cover only a portion of the total costs of attending college.
  • Walk-on scholarships: Although not technically a scholarship, walk-ons have the opportunity to be part of the football team without receiving any financial aid. It is often worth considering, as it can provide a pathway to earn a scholarship in the future.

To be considered for a scholarship, high school football players should be proactive early in their high school careers by attending college camps, showcasing their talents, and getting in touch with college coaches. Maintaining good grades and demonstrating leadership off the field is equally important in earning a scholarship.

Once you have been offered a scholarship, it is essential to remember that the arrangement is still a business deal. NCAA rules limit the amount of money that schools can provide for their student-athletes, and the terms of the scholarship will outline the expectations that come with the agreement. Stay on top of your academics, follow the rules, maintain your physical fitness, and represent your school with pride.

Recruitment Process for Football Scholarships

Recruitment for football scholarships starts early in a player’s career, often as early as their freshman year of high school. Identifying the right fit for a scholarship requires a combination of factors such as skill level, academic achievement, and character. Recruitment occurs in several stages:

  • Identifying potential recruits: Coaches will identify potential recruits by visiting high schools, attending football camps, and reviewing game footage.
  • Evaluation: Once a coach identifies a potential recruit, the athlete’s performance is evaluated through a combination of game footage and performance at camps.
  • Extending an offer: After a coach successfully identifies an athlete that they would like to offer a scholarship, they will extend the offer in writing. After the athlete signs the offer, the athlete and the coach have an agreement that binds both parties.

Football Scholarship Eligibility Requirements

The NCAA sets specific criteria for athletic eligibility requirements to receive a football scholarship. These requirements include:

  • Meeting academic requirements such as minimum GPA and SAT or ACT scores.
  • Meeting amateurism requirements, which means student-athletes cannot accept any compensation for their performance on the field.
  • Complying with transfer eligibility requirements, including sitting out for a year and repaying scholarships if transferring to another school.

Understanding the different types of football scholarships available, the recruitment process, and eligibility requirements can help student-athletes get one step closer to achieving their dream of playing football and getting a college education. Keep working hard, stay focused, and open to opportunities – and always remember to have fun while playing the beautiful game.

Type of Scholarship Requirements Benefits
Full Ride Scholarship Top-performing athlete; meeting minimum academic requirements Covers tuition, room and board, books, and other fees
Partial Scholarship High-achieving athlete; meeting minimum academic requirements Covers a portion of the total costs of attending college
Walk-On Scholarship No scholarship offered; athlete joins football team voluntarily Opportunity to earn a scholarship in the future

Football scholarships can guide young athletes to their dreams of playing football while earning a college education. Be proactive, maintain good grades, attend college camps, and showcase your talents to get the attention of college coaches. Remember, earning a scholarship requires hard work, dedication, and persistence. Keep chasing your dreams and keep working towards your goals.

Requirements for Football Scholarships

Aspiring athletes often dream of earning a college football scholarship to help pave the way to success on the gridiron. However, obtaining a football scholarship requires more than just being a talented player. Below are some of the requirements one must consider when aiming for a football scholarship:

  • Academic Eligibility: Many universities look not only at a student-athlete’s performance on the field, but also their academic achievements. These achievements can include a certain GPA, SAT or ACT scores, and credits in core subjects. A student must meet these academic requirements to even be considered for a football scholarship.
  • Athletic Ability: A student-athlete must demonstrate promising athletic abilities to be considered for a football scholarship. This includes not only their physical skills on the field, but also their sportsmanship and leadership abilities. Coaches and recruiters often observe potential players in high school games, summer camps, and showcases to evaluate their abilities.
  • NCAA Eligibility: The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has specific eligibility requirements that a student-athlete must meet to participate in college sports, including football. These requirements include completing certain courses in high school, registering with the NCAA Eligibility Center, and maintaining amateur status.

In addition to these requirements, there are also certain timelines that student-athletes must follow to apply for football scholarships. For example, college coaches can begin contacting athletes after their junior year in high school, and athletes can begin making official visits to schools after September 1st of their senior year.

Overall, obtaining a football scholarship can be an intense and often competitive process. Meeting academic and athletic requirements while also navigating NCAA regulations can be a challenging feat. However, with dedication, hard work, and perseverance, aspiring football players can work towards achieving their dreams of playing at the next level.

How to apply for a football scholarship

Applying for a football scholarship can be intimidating, but with the right preparation and research, you can give yourself the best chance at securing an offer. Below are some key steps you should take when applying for a football scholarship:

  • Research scholarship opportunities: The first step is to research scholarship opportunities that are available to you. Look for colleges or universities that offer football scholarships and determine what their requirements and eligibility criteria are.
  • Prepare your highlight reel: Your highlight reel is a crucial component of your application. It should showcase your best plays and demonstrate your skills and abilities as a football player. Make sure it is edited professionally and includes your most recent and impressive plays.
  • Reach out to coaches: Once you have identified the colleges or universities you are interested in, reach out to their football coaches. Introduce yourself and express your interest in their program. Provide them with your highlight reel and any other relevant information they may need.

Additionally, it’s important to make sure you meet the NCAA and academic eligibility requirements. Keep your grades up and study for the SAT or ACT exam if necessary. Finally, make sure to submit your application on time and follow up with the coaches to express your continued interest in attending their institution and playing football for their team.

Below is a table summarizing the general eligibility criteria for NCAA football scholarships:

Division Number of Scholarships Minimum GPA Minimum SAT/ACT Score
Division I 85 2.3 900/75
Division II 36 2.2 NAIA minimum or 820 SAT/68 ACT

Keep in mind that these requirements may vary by institution and conference, so be sure to research the specific eligibility criteria for the colleges or universities you are interested in.

Factors that affect football scholarship offers

Football players dream of receiving scholarship offers, but not everyone can make it. Various factors affect the availability and amount of football scholarship offer that players receive. In this article, we will discuss the five significant factors that affect football scholarship offers.


  • Grades: Football players must maintain good grades to be eligible for scholarships. Coaches often prioritize players with good academic records, demonstrating that they can handle the academic rigor of college.
  • Test scores: High test scores can improve the chances of getting football scholarships because they indicate a player’s academic aptitude. They prove that a player will succeed academically in college.
  • Difficulty of courses: The difficulty of courses taken in high school also has an impact on the scholarship decision. Students who take tougher classes show that they are ready for the college environment.


Football has various positions each with its specific requirements. A college football coach has unique needs for each position player, which makes skill set requirements a significant factor.

  • Offensive Line: The requirements for offensive linemen include a player’s size and strength.
  • Quarterbacks: To excel as a quarterback, a player must have an arm talent, speed, agility, excellent decision-making skills, and a high football IQ.
  • Defensive Line: The requirements for defensive line include the speed to rush the quarterback, strength to overpower blockers, and the size to click tackles.

High School Program

The high school program and the quality of football played in high school is a significant factor in determining a player’s football scholarship offers because its helps colleges predict how well a player will adjust to college football.

  • High school competitiveness: Football played in highly competitive schools has a higher level of competition hence, increasing the likelihood for more extensive scholarship offers.
  • Coach’s Connections: A player from a high school with connections to the coaching staff can increase the chances of a scholarship offer being offered.
  • State of Residence: Some states have a higher concentration of top football players, making the recruitment process a little more difficult for high school players from other states.

Size of the Recruiting Pool

The recruiting pool is a significant factor in determining if a football player will receive a scholarship offer because of the competitive nature of recruitment. This is determined by the number of high school players participating in football.

  • Number of players vying for scholarships: The more football players who want scholarships, the harder it is to get one. This number can vary depending on what state a player lives in, the year, and personnel needs for the recruiting University.
  • Level of competition: Division 1 scholarships tend to have the most competition, while lower division offers are a lot less competitive.
  • Positional Needs: Some years, certain positions face more needs than others, which can affect recruitment decisions.

Location of the School

The location of the school is another factor that can affect whether a football player receives scholarship offers. This factor determines the cost of living, number of hours spent traveling, and other related variables.

Location Factors
Rural Areas Prospective students might miss urban life. This can impact growth opportunities and social life, amongst others.
Urban Areas The Cost of living might be expensive, and other significant factors like traffic congestion, a higher local population resulting in fewer opportunities.
Out-of-State schools Some out-of-state Universities have a non-resident surcharge. Although this can be offset by scholarships or grants, it is still a factor that might affect players.

In conclusion, college football scholarship offers depend on various factors ranging from academics to location and are considered by coaches before extending the offer. Understanding these factors can help football players focus on improving weaknesses and playing up their strengths to receive a scholarship offer to further their football dreams in college.

The Benefits of Receiving a Football Scholarship

As a high school student-athlete, the opportunity to receive a football scholarship can be life-changing. It can provide a chance for you to pursue your athletic dreams while simultaneously earning an education. Here are some of the benefits of receiving a football scholarship:

  • Financial support: A football scholarship provides financial support for tuition, room and board, and other related expenses. This can be a huge relief for families who may struggle to pay for college. It also allows the student-athlete to focus on their sport and academics without the added stress of financial burdens.
  • Access to quality coaching and facilities: Football scholarships often come with the opportunity to play for a top-tier program, which means access to quality coaching, the latest equipment, and state-of-the-art training facilities. This can help student-athletes improve their skills and gain a competitive edge, while also building their network within the football community.
  • Opportunity for exposure: Playing for a top football program can also provide exposure and recognition, which can lead to potential opportunities in the future. This can include professional contracts, endorsements, and even media opportunities.

Academic benefits of receiving a football scholarship

Receiving a football scholarship not only provides an opportunity to play football at a high level, but it also opens doors for a quality education. Here are some of the academic benefits of receiving a football scholarship:

  • Access to top-tier academic institutions: Many of the best football programs in the country are also highly respected academic institutions. This provides student-athletes with the opportunity to receive a quality education and access to top-notch professors and academic resources.
  • Academic support: Football scholarships often come with academic support to help student-athletes balance their athletic and academic commitments. This can include tutoring, study halls, and other resources designed to help them succeed both on and off the field.
  • Networking opportunities: Playing football at a high level can open doors and provide networking opportunities that can be instrumental in shaping a career path. It can provide access to alumni networks and other professional connections that can be valuable beyond graduation.

Social and Personal benefits of receiving a football scholarship

Beyond academic and athletic success, receiving a football scholarship can also provide social and personal benefits. These include:

  • Camaraderie and team-building: Football is a team sport, and playing at a high level requires a strong sense of camaraderie and teamwork. Receiving a football scholarship provides an opportunity to form long-lasting relationships with teammates and coaches that can last a lifetime.
  • Improved communication skills: Football requires effective communication on and off the field. Student-athletes who receive football scholarships can develop their communication skills, which can be valuable both personally and professionally.
  • Increased self-confidence: Playing football at a high level can be a confidence booster. It requires dedication, hard work, and the ability to perform under pressure, all of which can help student-athletes build self-confidence and self-esteem.

In summary, receiving a football scholarship can be a life-changing opportunity for student-athletes. It provides financial support, access to top-tier coaching and facilities, and academic and personal benefits that can set them up for success beyond the football field.

Alternatives to Football Scholarships for Paying for College

While many gifted athletes dream of a football scholarship to help fund their college education, not everyone is able to secure this coveted form of financial aid. Fortunately, there are still several other options available for students who need to pay for college but don’t necessarily have the talent or connections to land a football scholarship. Here are some alternative ways to pay for college:

  • Academic Scholarships: Many universities and private organizations offer academic scholarships that are based on merit rather than athletic ability. These scholarships are typically awarded to students with outstanding academic achievement or other accomplishments such as leadership experience, community service, or artistic talent. Students can apply for these scholarships directly through the school or organization offering them, and may have to submit transcripts, essays, or other materials to be considered.
  • Need-Based Financial Aid: While football scholarships are typically awarded based on athletic ability, need-based financial aid takes other factors into account, such as family income and the cost of attendance for the school the student wishes to attend. To apply for need-based financial aid, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which will determine their eligibility for federal grants, loans, and work-study programs, as well as potentially make them eligible for state or institutional aid.
  • Part-Time Work: For many students, working part-time during college is a necessity in order to make ends meet. Some universities offer on-campus job opportunities such as working at the library, cafeteria, or as an office assistant. Additionally, there are many part-time jobs available off-campus, such as retail, food service, or babysitting. While working part-time during college may require some sacrifices, it can help students build valuable job skills, gain work experience, and take some of the financial burden off of their families.

In addition to these options, students may also consider taking out student loans to help pay for college. While no one wants to graduate with significant debt, student loans can provide a lifeline for students who need financial assistance to pursue an education. However, students should be sure to carefully consider the terms and conditions of any loan they take out, including interest rates, repayment periods, and terms of deferment or forgiveness.

Ultimately, while a football scholarship may be the ideal way to pay for college for some gifted athletes, it is important to remember that it is only one of many options available. With hard work, careful planning, and a willingness to explore alternative sources of financial aid, any student can find a way to achieve their college dreams.


1. Can anyone get a scholarship for football?

No, scholarships are usually given to outstanding players that show potential for college-level competition.

2. Is a scholarship guaranteed if you are a great football player?

No, scholarships are competitive and awarded at the discretion of college recruiters.

3. Are only Division I schools offering football scholarships?

No, Division II and III schools also offer athletic scholarships to promising student-athletes.

4. Is academic performance a factor in getting a football scholarship?

Yes, academic excellence is a vital criterion for receiving a scholarship along with athletic prowess.

5. Do scholarships cover all college expenses?

No, typically, scholarships will pay for tuition, books, and campus housing, but not transportation or other living expenses.

6. Can international students get a football scholarship?

Yes, international students may also receive scholarships, but they may have to navigate additional academic and visa requirements.

Closing Thoughts

Thanks for reading this article on football scholarships. Remember that, while scholarships are competitive, there are many opportunities available. If you are a talented football player and are diligent in your studies, you may be able to get a scholarship that helps offset the cost of college. Keep searching and working hard towards your goals! Don’t forget to visit us again for more exciting articles on student life and higher education.