Starting next fall, college-bound athletes must ‘earn 2.3 or take a knee’

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has changed its initial eligibility requirements to play Division I and II sports, and college-bound high-school athletes will need to take note so they don’t end up on the sidelines warming the bench.

“The biggest change is to the minimum grade point average (GPA) requirement for core courses, which will increase from 2.0 to 2.3 as of the fall of 2016,” said HISD Director of Athletics Marmion Dambrino. “That means students who are on the edge in those areas will really have to buckle down to be eligible to participate in athletics programs or receive athletic scholarships as freshmen in college.”

Other changes require students to earn at least seven credits in English, math, and science before the start of their senior year, and 10 credits in all core subjects prior to the seventh semester. The grades for those courses will be locked in once the senior year commences and cannot be retaken in the hopes of boosting students’ averages.

HISD will be launching a public-awareness campaign to alert all district stakeholders of the NCAA’s policy changes this winter through a combination of posters for display in the halls of all high school campuses and silicone wristbands for distribution to student athletes who register at Presentations also will be scheduled at each campus to help get the word out. A list of upcoming meetings will be posted and updated regularly on the Athletics website.

For complete details on the NCAA’s policy changes, please visit the “2point3” website. College-bound athletes may register at starting their sophomore year to help them stay on track academically.