The Difference Between a Walk-On Versus a Preferred Walk-On

The Difference Between a Walk-On Versus a Preferred Walk-On

A walk-on is a student-athlete who joins a college sports team without being recruited or offered an athletic scholarship. A preferred walk-on is a walk-on who has been specifically selected by the coaching staff.

Preferred walk-ons are often recruited from high-level high school athletes who were not quite good enough to earn an athletic scholarship but are still talented enough to contribute to the team. They usually receive some level of financial aid, although it is usually less than what a scholarship athlete would receive.

Primary Differences Between a Walk-On and a Preferred Walk-On

Walk-ons have to try out for the team like everyone else. They are not guaranteed a spot on the roster and may be cut from the team at any time. Preferred walk-ons are also not guaranteed a spot on the roster, but they are usually given more consideration than regular walk-ons.

The coaching staff may offer a preferred walk-on a spot on the team even if there are other players who are better than them. This is because the coaching staff knows that the preferred walk-on will be a good fit for the team and will add value to the program.

Preferred walk-ons often have an advantage over regular walk-ons because they are already familiar with the coach and the program. They also usually have a better understanding of what is expected of them and what their role will be on the team.

Regular walk-ons who make the team can eventually earn scholarships just like any other player. Preferred walk-ons may also be eligible for scholarships, but they are typically not awarded until after they have proven themselves on the team.

The decision to walk-on or preferred walk-on to a college team is a personal one. Each situation is different and there is no right or wrong answer. Some athletes prefer to walk-on because they want to prove that they are good enough to earn a spot on the team. Others prefer to walk-on because they want to be part of a program that they are already familiar with and have a connection to. And still others choose to preferred walk-on because it gives them a better chance of making the team and earning a scholarship. Regardless of the reason, each type of walk-on has the same goal: to earn a spot on the college team and help the team win.

How to Talk to a Coach to Request a Preferred Walk-On Opportunity

If you're interested in joining a team as a walk-on or preferred walk-on, reach out to the coach and express your interest. Be prepared to talk about your athletic experience and why you think you'd be a good fit for the team. Convince the coach that you're dedicated to the sport and willing to put in the work to earn a spot on the roster. Demonstrate your passion and commitment, and you may just earn a place on the team.

Can a Walk-On Eventually Earn a Scholarship?

A walk-on is a player who joins a team without having been recruited or offered a scholarship. A preferred walk-on is a walk-on who has been identified by the coaching staff as someone with the potential to contribute to the team.

It is possible for a walk-on to eventually earn a scholarship on the team. This usually happens if the walk-on proves their worth and demonstrates that they are capable of contributing to the team. In some cases, walk-ons may be awarded scholarships due to injuries or other unforeseen circumstances.

Walk-on players have to work hard to earn their spot on the team. They are often at a disadvantage because they did not go through the recruitment process and may not be as well-known to the coaching staff. However, walk-ons who are dedicated and put in the extra effort can make a name for themselves and eventually earn a scholarship.

If you're interested in playing college sports as a walk-on, it's important to reach out and contact college coaches. Sending an introductory email or direct message is a great first step in getting on their radar. By communicating your interest and keeping in touch, you'll increase your chances of being recruited. College coaches are always looking for talented athletes, so don't hesitate to reach out and let them know you're interested in playing at the next level.

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