One of the first surprises for many student-athletes and their families is the many different types of offers they can actually receive from a school. Learn more about scholarship offers.
Preferred walk-on Not all offers come with a monetary reward. Sometimes, the reward is simply a spot on the roster. A preferred walk-on offer means the coach would like you on the team but cannot (or won’t) offer any financial assistance at least for the first year. Preferred walk-ons can earn a scholarship going into their second season, but nothing is guaranteed. Some student-athletes will turn down scholarship offers at smaller schools to play for a bigger program as a preferred walk-on.
Do preferred walk-ons sign on signing day? Technically, preferred walk-ons don’t have anything to sign on Signing Day, as they aren’t receiving an athletic scholarship. However, walk-ons are an essential part of a successful team, and college coaches want to celebrate their signing, as well. Ask your future coach about having something to sign, especially if your school is throwing a Signing day party. Don’t forget to rep your new school with some gear!
Recruited walk-on offer A recruited walk-on offer means there is interest from the coach but no financial assistance and you must still earn a spot on the team through additional try outs or summer training camp. Although there is no financial assistance or even a guarantee of making the team, some student-athletes still view a recruited walk-on offer as a great opportunity to be play at the highest level of competition.
Unrecruited walk-on offer Typically, this is when a student-athlete qualifies for admission to the school and plans to join the team through an open tryout. In this scenario, there is usually a conversation with the college coach prior to enrollment to confirm the student-athlete will be able to try out for the team.
There is a lot to consider with any type of walk-on offer. This is especially true if you have scholarship offers from other schools.
Re: thanks for taking the time to explain the difference***
Dec 24, 2020, 2:15 PM
Preferred's also get to practice with the team in pre-fall (they already have a spot on team roster for Fall Semester), whereas "walk-ons" have to be enrolled and thus, miss all those practices. I also think Preferreds get to eat with the team, but not walk-ons. Hebstreits sons were preferred and his youngest is PWO at Ohio St.
Re: TNET: Virginia QB announces commitment to Clemson
Dec 25, 2020, 9:46 AM
I have never understood the allure of turning down scholarships from other Universities to attend a school as a Walk-on with a slim chance of playing. I had the same opportunity years ago to be a walk-on at one school (University of Houston) to play baseball, but I instead accepted a scholarship to Southeastern Louisiana University; anyways welcome to Clemson.