Student athlete problems

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Balancing school and athletics is a bit of a daunting task for U of R students

Ed Kapp
Sports Writer

It’s crunch time for students all over campus – athletes too. Although dealing with midterms and assignments may cause some people to reach their breaking point, imagine having to deal with a heavy school load while representing your school on one of their athletic teams.

This situation is all too familiar for numerous University of Regina student-athletes.

According to Tevaughn Campbell – a member of both the U of R’s track and field team and football squad – many of his peers are taken aback by his seemingly packed schedule.

“That’s the first thing that comes to their heads,” said Campbell, who is also taking three classes this semester. “Like, ‘Oh, you do track and football? How do you manage that?’”

Although Campbell is used to the question at this point, it is nevertheless an interesting query, because if student athletes want to excel both in the classroom and in athletics, they must strike a balance between their studies and athletic endeavours.

This balance – which many student-athletes have difficultly achieving – includes time spent in class, doing assignments, studying, training, practicing, traveling and, of course, playing.

Some Rams players like Catlin Schneider, a wide receiver currently enrolled in the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, are all too familiar with this issue of balance.

“I will devote about five hours a day or more [to football] once [the] season comes along, so about 25 hours during the week, and, depending on if we have a game [and] where we are playing, up to another 10 hours on the weekend,” Schneider explained. “Extra time can come along with injuries … [and] extra lifts and workouts in season.

“Balancing my life schedule during the CIS season is tough, as engineering is a lot of work and time. Studying and [being] in class, plus practicing and taking care of the body physically, also takes up lots of time.”

For Addison Docherty, a guard for the Cougars men’s basketball team, having success as a student-athlete is almost wholly dependant on one factor.

“Scheduling will determine whether you get good grades or fall behind in school,” explained Docherty, who sometimes referees intramural basketball when not studying or playing ball. “I look at my syllabus at the beginning of the year and figure out which times I’ll be very busy and, from there, when I have to begin working on everything.

“Basically, you’ve got to manage your time well,” added Campbell, who trains on more days than he does not. “Manage your time and you should be good. Make a schedule, make a list of goals – things that you want to accomplish – and you’ll be good.”

According to Docherty, however, it takes a bit more than time-management skills to excel while pursuing an education and participating in collegiate-level athletics.

“I’m not afraid to put the books down and take an hour or two to just sit around and watch TV or go out and shoot hoops,” Docherty admitted.

“It’s extremely important to have balance, or you’re going to drive yourself crazy … I’ve always had a good balance between school and relaxing and my social life, so I’ve never experienced a meltdown or anything. I know people who take school way too seriously and they’re usually pretty irritable – they become monsters. They let school consume them.”

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