I played NAIA. Team was always ranked top 25. Freshman and sophomore year we were in the top 10. I won a bunch of tournaments, conference POY, etc. Graduated with a 3.7 gpa. Just for background.
1) What kind of schedule does a student-athlete keep each day and during the week with respect to required practices and workouts?
Coach was pretty lenient. He worked qualifying around our class schedules. Basically told us it was up to us to practice if we wanted to travel. He recruited golf nuts that didn’t have to be told to practice. Said we’d be better off spending an hour putting than in the gym. Old school.
2) What does a weekly schedule look like when there are tournaments (including travel)?
Sunday- travel to course, practice round, check in at hotel. Fast food breakfast and dinner.
Monday- hotel breakfast, round 1 (and 2 if it’s a 54 hole), fast food dinner
Tuesday- hotel breakfast, round 2, head back to campus straight from the course. Fast food dinner. Homework in the van or when we got back to school.
3) What are the number of hours/week commitment for #1 and 2?
Qualified 3 days a week and practiced when necessary. Probably devoted 5 hours/day during the week.
4) How hard is it to balance academics and social life?
Not very. Leave the course, eat dinner/do homework, find the party. Don’t schedule 8 am classes. Find a classmate that takes good notes. Buy them dinner for their notes or something.
5) How difficult is it to have a tough major (e.g. pre-med, engineering)?
Totally depends on your intelligence level/ test taking ability. If you’re smart and you know how to dissect multiple choice questions and can bs an essay then you’re fine. Tests are the main thing. Every teacher has a certain code to crack for their tests. Ask around figure it out. Figure out what the teacher cares about and tailor your written responses to that.
6) What do students do during the summer, specifically if they are pursuing an occupation where an internship is suggested or required to get a job after graduation?
I played summer tournaments and worked at a golf course. I had several teammates who did internships without a problem.
7) What are the most important things to be considered from a golfing perspective when picking a program? I.e. coach vs team rank vs practice facilities vs home course vs teammates vs reputation of program?
While it’s a team score, it’s an individual sport. You can win an individual national championship with the worst team in the country. I mean obviously it’s better to have a nicer facility but in the end if you have a shag bag and an open field you can get better if you have the desire. You spend most of your time with your coach and teammates in a van. Better to have a good coach and good teammates than to have a great practice facility.
8) Any schools with particularly strong alumni relationship among former golfers?
Not sure what you’re asking here. I’m tight with a bunch of alumni from our school. Made a lot of great relationships.
That’s the real version of it. You can make a long detailed schedule with workout time and practice time and homework time all made out, but the bottom line when it comes to the academics is whether or not it matters to you. If you care about passing your classes then you will. Whether that’s actually going to class or finding someone to take notes or writing test answers on the inside of your water bottle. You can pay the girl that sits beside you to do your homework while you go out. Would I encourage it? No. But it’s easily doable.
With the golf, you can either play or you can’t. Scheduling 2 hours to putt 5 footers through a cute little tee gate or spending an hour doing sit-ups doesn’t mean jack s*** when you’ve gotta make par on a tight par 4 with water all over it for the team to win.
That’s my take on it.