Lacrosse scholarships and merit aid (stack or not?)

Parent of current 10th grader who will have some opportunities to play lacrosse after high school. She will likely be a D2 athlete based on where she is and where others like her have landed. Of course this will all hinge on if she really wants to be a college athlete or just likes the idea.

Because lacrosse is an equiv sport with no one getting full rides, we figure that lacrosse would just factor into the whole mix of affording college. Trying to project out that far, she will likely be a strong academic student but not in the elite status that triggers big merit packages. Our EFC for her brother (who is currently a freshman in college) will be about 40,000. Question, assuming she gets similar FA and grants to bring her costs to 40k, would a partial lacrosse scholarship reduce her costs down from 40? Does the athletic partial scholarship essentially “stack?”

No, not necessarily. Would have to inquire with each college directly about whether or not stacking is allowed…

In past years, many colleges would not provide more aid to substitute for or reduce family’s expected contribition.

Not sure what latest NCAA rules about aid may be.

Could see for more info

If you are asking if the NCAA allows stacking for Div 2, yes. If you are asking if a particular school allows it, you’ll have to ask the college. Also, merit from a school can be stacked but need based financial aid from the school cannot stack (well it can, but it counts against the coach’s total, so the coaches don’t allow it as the math is just too confusing).

My daughter played lacrosse at a D2 in Florida. She stacked her merit, athletic, and 2 grants (available to all students, not just athletes, and not based on need) from the school. She also had a Florida resident grant, bright futures, SEOG, a Pell grant, and another Florida need based grant. Stack 'em up!

I love D2 athletics. It worked very well for my daughter, athletically and financially.

Thank you 2in. I have read that D2 lacrosse athletes should expect 25% tuition in the first year. At some of the private D2 schools we have looked at that doesn’t provide much unless it came as an additional (stacked) benefit.

There is a whole that will happen in the next 2 years so this may be a non issue. Part of my kid would be best suited at a very large college with lots and lots of different kinds of kids. Her suburban high school is a bit homogeneous for her to really grow. Good school but kids tend to fit a pretty narrow profile and she is a really curious kid who I think might really blossom in a large school environment.

We lived in Florida, so our D1 choice in state (public) was UF. That’s a top ranked program so she was never going to get on that team. There were other D1 programs she could have played for like Stetson and Jacksonville and used her Florida benefits of Bright Futures and resident grant but she didn’t like the programs or the schools.

I think the 25% might vary. Florida Southern coach doesn’t give money to freshmen (at least that’s what she tells people) and always has a huge team (35 players) so it’s not possible for her to give 25% to every player (only has 9.9 scholarships to divide among all players, and I’m sure some of the starters are getting 50% as juniors and seniors). St. Leo’s is not as expensive to attend as Rollins (the Rollins coach is fantastic). My daughter went to Florida Tech and the awards really varied. The top recruits got $20k (at the time COA was $55k), but that was the first year and the coach regretted that so I don’t think that amount was given in future years; I think after that first year most were getting about $7-10k, so your 25% would work for some, but not all. Everyone got something, but sometimes only $2k. Florida Tech gave fairly big merit awards so the coach counted on players earning those and stacking them. My daughter was promised the coach would pay anything not covered her senior year, but my daughter actually got LESS money that year because everything was covered by other awards (she didn’t live on campus so her COA was less that year too).

A lot of the Div 2 schools are rather small and may not have the diversity you are looking for. The schools in the south are often rural or suburban (Limestone, Belmont Abbey, Rollins, Lynn) and not terribly diverse. The state schools in PA are bigger and more like a D1 university, just smaller. There are a few D2 near NYC, but most are not near cities. Although my daughter did have friends in her sorority and from her major, she mostly hung out with the lax team, and that’s not a diverse group at ANY school. My daughter was the only minority player on the team. She didn’t play teams with a lot of minority students. Lacrosse is getting there, but it is not an integrated sport yet.

It sounded like in your OP your son had received a merit award and a need based aid award that stacked to get to your EFC. That won’t happen with an athletic scholarship. She’ll get the merit award and then any athletic scholarship, and probably nothing else from the school. The coach won’t be trying to meet the EFC but just awarding an amount that fits her athletic budget. She could qualify for federal aid (unlikely if your EFC is $40k), private scholarships as long as they aren’t for sports (those would count against the coach’s budget) and aid from your state. Stacking is allowed, but not with need based aid from the school. Look for schools with big merit aid and then athletic aid.

It’s a balancing act. It really is.

Really helpful. Thanks. To say lacrosse is a white kid sport here on the west coast is an understatement. I had thought it might be different in areas where the game is more established. Interesting. Thanks again.