What Sports Get Full Scholarships?

There are many different types of scholarships that can help you pay for college, but did you know that some sports can get you a full scholarship? If you’re looking to get your college education paid for, here’s a list of sports that can get you a full scholarship.

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NCAA Division 1

In order to be eligible for a full athletic scholarship at an NCAA Division 1 school, you must be a full-time student and maintain a 2.0 GPA or above. You must also be registered with the NCAA Eligibility Center and meet all of their requirements.

The following sports are in NCAA Division 1:
-Cross Country
-Field Hockey
-Ice Hockey
-Track & Field (indoor and outdoor)
Water Polo


Football is one of the most popular sports in the United States, and it also happens to be one of the most common sports to offer full scholarships. According to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), there are more than 100 schools that offer football scholarships, and each school can award up to 85 full scholarships. That means that there are potentially more than 8,500 full football scholarships available every year.

Men’s and Women’s Basketball

Men’s and women’s basketball are two sports that offer full scholarships at the collegiate level. In Division I, there are about 350 full scholarships available for men and about 325 for women. In Division II, there are about 190 full scholarships available for men and about 170 for women.

Women’s Gymnastics

Women’s gymnastics is one of the few sports that offer full scholarships at the collegiate level. According to the NCAA, there are only 12 schools that offer full scholarships for women’s gymnastics, as of 2016. This is a very exclusive list, and it’s important to note that these programs are also very competitive.

The schools that offer full scholarships for women’s gymnastics are:
-University of Alabama
-University of Arkansas
-Auburn University
-University of Florida
-Georgia Institute of Technology
-University of Kentucky
-Louisiana State University
-University of Missouri
-University of Nebraska
-Ohio State University
-Pennsylvania State University
-University of Utah

NCAA Division 2

Division 2 athletics programs are self-funded and may not offer athletic scholarships to students. However, schools may award need-based financial aid and academic scholarships that can be used to offset the cost of tuition, room and board, and other expenses.

Men’s and Women’s Basketball

A full scholarship for basketball covers tuition, room and board, books, and fees. That’s a value of more than $20,000 per year at most colleges. A full ride for men’s basketball is less common than for women’s basketball, but some men’s programs (such as Duke) do offer full scholarships to all their players.

In order to be eligible for a full scholarship, you must be a recruited athlete. That means the college’s basketball coach has specifically asked you to come play for his or her team. If you walk onto a team (meaning you try out and make the team without being recruited), you will not be eligible for a scholarship.


To be eligible for a full scholarship, a baseball player must:
– Be enrolled full time at an NCAA Division I, II, or III school
– Have completed one full year of academic work at their current school
– Be in good academic standing with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 or above
– Maintain amateur status as defined by the NCAA

In order to keep their scholarships, baseball players must:
– Remain academically eligible (as defined by their school) each semester/quarter
– Make satisfactory progress towards their degree each semester/quarter


Education-wise, softball players are in a good spot. According to the NCAA, Division I and II programs can award up to 12 scholarships per team, while Division III programs are not allowed to offer athletic scholarships but can provide other forms of financial aid.

In 2019, there were nearly 200 Division I softball programs and just over 300 Division II programs, meaning there are thousands of potential scholarships out there. And because softball is a relatively popular sport with college coaches—there were over 4,500 NCAA-sanctioned softball teams in 2019—players have a good chance of being recruited by multiple schools and earning a scholarship.

NCAA Division 3

In order to be eligible to receive an athletic scholarship at an NCAA Division 3 school, you must first meet all of the academic requirements set forth by the NCAA. Once you have done that, you can then begin the process of trying to earn a spot on a team and receiving a scholarship.

There are more than 400 sports offered at NCAA Division 3 schools, so there are plenty of opportunities to earn a full ride. Some of the most popular sports at this level include baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, track & field, and volleyball.

To give yourself the best chance of earning a full scholarship, it’s important to start early in your high school career. Talk to your coach about what you need to do to be recruited by a Division 3 school and make sure you’re on the right track academically. It’s also a good idea to research schools that offer the sport you’re interested in and see what their requirements are for admission and athletics.

Men’s and Women’s Lacrosse

Lacrosse is a sport with two distinct variations: Men’s lacrosse and women’s lacrosse. Both versions of the game are growing in popularity at the collegiate level, and as a result, more and more programs are offering full scholarships to talented athletes.

In general, men’s lacrosse scholarships are more abundant than women’s lacrosse scholarships. That said, there are still plenty of opportunities for female athletes to earn a full ride. For both men and women, playing lacrosse at the Division I level is the best bet for getting a full scholarship.

While any student-athlete has a chance to earn a partial scholarship by impressing coaches with their skills, there are only so many full rides to go around. As a result, it’s important to understand the landscape of collegiate lacrosse before making any decisions about which level of play is right for you.

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