When people think about student-athletes some of the stereotypes are that we are not smart, have people do our homework for us, and/or that the rules do not apply to us. With that, some people can be on the dumber side, but being a student-athlete doesn’t give them that title. Some think that we have it so easy but honestly, our days can be some of the busiest. I am here today to walk you through the life of a student-athlete, game day edition.
Not just on game days, but every day I tend to wake up at around 9 AM before the rest of my roommates are awake to get some stuff done around our apartment. This gives me time to get my laundry done, pick up the kitchen and tidy up my bedroom. Moving onto my game day breakfast, it never really changes. I choose things that are going to fuel me for the day and prepare me for my game. I make two sausage and egg burritos on a low-carb tortilla (we are trying to be healthy here okay) with a side of avocado and toast with protein-packed peanut butter.
Then after my breakfast, I get dressed and ready to head over to the gym to get some shots up. Every day we shoot 50 free throws before classes to get the team up and moving and ready for the day. As an athlete, it can be hard to find time to sit down and get a big chunk of homework completed. For me, I like to spend most of my time in the Honors Building lounge to get my work done because it is quiet and not a lot of people are around. Since I ended last semester with a GPA higher than 3.0, I am not required to go to the Academic Achievement Center, but it is a great place to get work done.
Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in 2020, more and more classes have been offered online rather than in person. This semester I am enrolled in three online classes which include video lectures, quizzes, discussions, and projects. On the DMACC campus, I take only two classes, Banner News and Anatomy & Physiology II. From about 10 AM to 12:30 PM I work on all of my online lectures and homework so I can only worry about my in-person classes later that night.
When it comes to game days, we must contact professors about any conflicts regarding class and basketball. On Wednesday’s home games, we have a team shoot around at 1 PM which conflicts with my 12:50 PM Banner News class. I then email my professor letting her know of this conflict, and we work out a solution.
When 1 PM rolls around, it is time for team shootaround. This usually consists of each player getting up individual shots in the gym before starting organized practice. Then we get into the plays that the opposing team is predicted to run against us in the later game. We do this so we can then work on our defenses against those plays and make sure we know who we are guarding during the game and what their attributes are towards the team. We usually get done around 2 PM which leaves us with a good chunk of time before we have to be back on the court.
This is the time of day when I get my fuel in for the game. A couple of my teammates and I go back to an apartment and crash on the couch for a nap. We then make some type of carb-load lunch such as pasta and a chicken breast dish. If we don’t make something at home, we will swing by Subway and get a sandwich to eat before heading to the training room to work with Sam, our athletic trainer.
She helps us with anything we need whether it is for prevention or recovery. Personally, I like to take a 15-20 minute hot bath before heading to warm-ups. This bath helps loosen my muscles and prevent cramps during the game. She also offers therapy such as electrical stimulation, heating pads, roller, and honestly a lot more.
After I do my pregame therapy, it’s time to take the court. We have to be on the court at 4:45 PM for a forty-five-minute warmup before the game tips off at 5:30. After we win the game, hopefully, the men’s team plays right after our game has ended. This gives me time to go back to the athletic training room, grab some ice and watch our men’s team compete.
After leaving the gym from the men’s game, it is usually around 9:30 PM. I can then take a shower, eat some dinner, relax and prepare for the next day to come.