Updated: Apr 29
Looking through the daily life of an athlete, some may think they know what it’s like, but in reality, it’s hard work, strict time management, and a lot of priority planning. For the common Missouri S&T student, they are taking vigorous classes, involved in Greek life or a student organization, maybe multiple, and balancing out their school and social life along the way. Students get the opportunity to plan around what they need to do in order to get a good grade in their classes or on a test. They have the opportunity to be involved if time permits and have the opportunity to socialize or do their hobbies as they please. As for athletes, it’s not always the case.
Athletes have a strict schedule they must follow regarding 6:00AM conditioning, weight training in the morning, group work throughout the day, team practice in the evening, and games scattered throughout the weekends and mid-week. On top of this, they have to rush from the athletic room or field straight to class (or vise-versa), giving them ten minutes in between to make it in time, when really it’s walking into class with one minute to spare or a few minutes late. While the schedule is out for the players to plan around, it’s not always that easy. Multiple players stated that “coaches will make last minute changes or games will get rescheduled the day of” creating a bottleneck to complete school work in time, get enough preparation for their test, or just throw a wrench in their plans. More than often, professors and students don’t understand the time commitment playing a sport takes and depending on the coach, it may be nearly impossible to predict how one's day is going to pan out. But on the other end, some coaches don’t understand that by making these six-hour bus rides to Wisconsin, leaving a day early, plus playing mid-week games in Rolla or out of state is causing their athletes to miss a lot of time in preparing for their classes and getting the education they desire to succeed in. However, as athletes go through this challenge, “it makes them stronger people and better at prioritizing their plans, making them work ahead of time.” Athletes learn a lot from their disciplined approach, and this tool can be carried out into any work industry.
Overall, being an athlete takes time management to a whole new level. One that requires strict discipline, flexibility, patience, and knowing how to learn on the road. It involves missing Easter and certain holidays with family and friends, catching up on missed lessons, and cutting out social events to focus on the game they play. Involved athletes in a challenging degree program deserve more credit for the time they put into their school work, athletic plays, and mental health in balancing it all.
The Miners have two weekend series left in their season against Southern Indiana and Quincy. Stay updated with their game stats by going to their 2022 baseball schedule and clicking “recap” if you missed the game, or “live stats” to stay updated during game time.
2022 Baseball Schedule: https://minerathletics.com/sports/baseball/schedule
Photo credited to Patrick Murphy, Assistant Sports Information Director.