ACT and SAT scores are no longer a requirement for student athletes in division one and two schools. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) passed this proposal a few weeks ago.
High school athletes must make certain grades to go on to the next level. For example, if a student has a 3.0 grade point average, they must have an SAT sum of 580 and an ACT sum of 46. These are higher than actual test scores, because they add up all of the scores creating a sum. That is the number they use. The NCAA DII requirement fact sheet has the sliding scale that can provide more information.
These requirements have been in place for decades, according to Mike Racy, Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) commissioner. When the pandemic hit the NCAA waived the requirement. Now the group has decided that those tests don’t truly measure the success of students compared to an overall GPA.
“There is more and more data now the NCAA has to say that maybe ACT and SAT test scores aren’t predicting success as freshman or all students like we had hoped,” Racy said.
Athletes still have to meet the ACT or SAT requirements set by the university they plan to attend, but they no longer need it to participate in sports.
Racy and Erin Mykleby, Emporia State’s deputy director of athletics and senior woman administrator, see many benefits to this change and don’t think anyone will see a downside. Some of the benefits include opening up recruitment to more students.
“There are certainly student athletes that haven’t been able to go to division one or division two because of the test score requirement that would now be able to look at division one and division two as an option,” Racy said.
Mykleby pointed out another benefit such as this will help students that didn’t have access to the tests because of incomes or other challenges.
This elimination doesn’t affect current athletes or incoming freshmen.
Racy says it’s very important to know what your requirements are to get into school and athletic programs. Athletics may not need these scores anymore, but some universities still require them.
“Anyone reading this article, that's thinking about competing in division one or division two, don’t start to think about requirements or what they need to be doing from an academic standpoint their senior year in high school. You really need to start thinking about these things when you are a sophomore or even a freshman,” Racy said.
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