College Track Scholarships.  Track and Field Recruiting.

There are over 1,000 college track and field programs. Each division level has a different number of track scholarships they can give out each year. For men’s programs a fully funded NCAA D1 or D2 track team will have 12.6 scholarships, NAIA programs have 12 scholarships. Women’s track and field teams have 18 scholarships per team at the D1 level, 12.6 for NCAA D2 and 12 scholarships for NAIA programs. The vast majority of track scholarships are given as partial scholarships, but there is always the chance you can get a full-ride if you find the right program.

How to Get a Track and Field Scholarship

College Track scholarships are awarded to athletes by the coaching staff of each program. Each year coaches evaluate their team’s needs and use their scholarships to award their top performing athletes as well as try and attract new athletes. For this reason, most scholarships are partial scholarships as coaches are dividing their track scholarships up to attract several top athletes.

In order to be a scholarship athlete you need to be able to come in and immediately be scoring points at the conference, regional and national level. For more information on track and field recruiting and how scholarships are awarded based on your event go here.

How Good do You Need to be to get a Track Scholarship?

Unlike other college sports, coaches aren’t watching hours of film and evaluating athletes at camps to know if they are going to be good enough for their team. Track and field is simple in the fact that either you can get the time or marks or you can’t. That being said, each program has different needs and philosophies when it comes to awarding scholarship money. Unlike other college sports ,most track coaches will be very upfront about what time or mark you will need to make their team and to get a scholarship. The best thing you can do is contact the coaches staff and ask them what it takes to make their team and possibly earn a college track scholarship at their program.

Men’s Track and Field

NCAA DI NCAA DII NCAA DIII NAIA
55m 6.4-6.7 6.6-6.9 6.8-7.2 6.8-7.2
60m 6.8-7.2 6.95-7.3 7.3-7.4 7.3-7.4
55m hurdles 7.4-7.9 7.65-8.1 8.0-8.2 8.0-8.2
60m hurdles 7.8-8.2 8.07-8.3 8.3-8.5 8.3-8.5
110m high hurdles 13.95-15.9 14.9-15.8 15.5-17.0 15.5-16.5
200m hurdles 37-42 40.0-44.0 42.0-44.0 42.0-44.0
400m hurdles 51.0-56.0 54.5-57.0 56:00-60:00 56:00-60:00
100m 10.5-11.0 10.9-11.2 11.0-11.4 10.9-11.3
200m 21.25-22.7 22.0-24.0 22.15-23.5 22.5-23.0
400m 47.5-51.0 49.0-54.0 49.5-53.0 49.5-52.0
800m 1:52-1:58 1:57-2:05 1:57-2:04 1:58-2:03
1,500m 3:55-4:10 4:00-4:20 4:05-4:30 4:05-4:30
1,600m 4:15-4:30 4:30-5:00 4:30-5:00 4:25-4:45
3,000m Steeplechase 9:34-9:50 9:45-11:00 9:45-11:00 9:45-10:30
3,200m 9:10-9:45 9:30-10:15 9:45-10:45 9:45-10:30
High Jump 7’0″-6’4″ 6’4″-6’0″ 6’1″-5’9″ 6’2″-5’8″
Pole Vault 16’6″-14’6″ 14’6″-12’0″ 15’0″-13’0″ 14’6″-13’0″
Long Jump 24’6″-22’0″ 22’6″-19’0″ 21’9″-19’6″ 22’0″-19’6″
Triple Jump 51’0″-42’0″ 45’0″-38’0″ 44’6″-38’2″ 45’0″-38’0″
Shot Put 60’10”-45’0″ 50’0″-35’0″ 50’0″-40’0″ 50’0″-40’0″
Discus 185’0″-155’0″ 150’0″-120’0″ 150’0″-120’0″ 140’0″-110’0″
Javelin 210’0″-170’0″ 170’0″-130’0″ 160’0″-130’0″ 160’0″-130’0″
Hammer (12lb) 210’0″-170’0″ 170’0″-130’0″ 160’0″-130’0″ 150’0″-120’0″
Decathlon 7000-6000 points 7000-6000 points 5800-4000 points 5000-4000 points

Women’s Track and Field

NCAA DI NCAA DII NCAA DIII NAIA
55m 7.11-7.50 7.5-8.0 7.8-8.0 7.8-8.0
60m 7.65-7.95 7.95-8.5 8.2-8.5 8.2-8.5
60m hurdles 8.6-9.2 9.2-10.0 9.5-10.0 9.5-10.0
100m hurdles 14.5-15.5 15.2-16.5 15.5-17.5 15.5-17.5
200m hurdles 43.1-46.0 46.5-48.5 48.5-49.5 47.5-48.5
400m hurdles 60.0-65.5 63.0-67.0 1:07-1:18 1:15.5-1:20.5
100m 11.9-12.8 12.5-13.4 12.5-13.5 12.87-13.5
200m 24-26.5 26.2-28.5 25.8 26.0-28.0
400m 54.5-60 59.0-68.0 59.5-1:04 59.5-1:05
800m 2:10-2:25 2:20-2:42 2:20-2:30 2:15-2:30
1,500m 4:40-5:20 4.50-5:20 4:40-5:20 5:00-5:10
1,600m 5:00-5:30 5:15-6:00 5:30-6:00 5:30-6:00
3,200m 11:00-12:15 11:30-12:15 11:50-12:50 11:50-12:30
3,000m Steeplechase 10:45-12:00 11:00-12:50 11:40-12:50 11:40-12:50
High Jump 5’10”-5’2″ 5’4″-5’0″ 5’1″-4’9″ 5’4″-5’0″
Long Jump 19’6″-17’0″ 17’0″-15’0″ 18’0″-16’0″ 17.0″-15’6″
Shot Put 45’0″-32’0″ 38’0″-32’0″ 40’0″-32’0″ 38’0″-34’0″
Discuss 149’0″-120’0″ 120’0″-100’0″ 120’0″-100’0″ 120’0″-100’0″
Pole Vault 12’6″-10’0″ 11’0″-8’0″ 11’0″-9’0″ 10’0″-8’0″
Triple Jump 40’0″-32’0″ 35’0″-30’0″ 36’0″-31’0″ 35’6″-34’2″
Hammer 170’0″-140’0″ 140’0″-120’0″ 136’0″-110’0″ 120’0″-100’0″
Javelin 140’0″-120’0″ 120’0″-100’0″ 110’0″-90’0″ 120’0″-100’0″
Heptathlon 5000-4000 points 4500-3500 points 3600-3000 points 3600-3000 points

NCAA D1 Track and Field

This is the top level of college track and field. The athletes that are competing here are among the best in the world. For many athletes just competing at this level never mind getting a scholarship can be a tremendous accomplishment. It is always good to have a couple D1 schools on your list but if your times or marks don’t match up to the athletes currently on the team you might need to look at the other division levels.

NCAA D2 Track and Field

Many of the athletes at the NCA D2 level have the times or ability to make the team at the D1 level but choose D2 because they can get a better scholarship package and be more competitive. This doesn’t mean the competition level is low, in fact the winning times and marks at D2 are often very close to the D1 times. The biggest difference is the depth of talent. If you are a fringe D1 athlete, you can compete at the D2 level and be much more competitive and probably get a bigger scholarship.

NCAA D3 Track and Field

Without the ability to offer athletic scholarships many people feel that D3 sports and track and field in particular are among the purist forms of competition. Athletes at this level could compete at the D2 level but have chosen D3 usually because the school is a better fit for them. If your times match up with D3 times, take the opportunity to get to know the some of the schools. You can search for NCAA D3 colleges here. You might find the perfect fit for continuing your track and field career while getting your degree.

NAIA Track and Field

For a long time people thought NAIA and D3 schools were the same levels of competition. Over the last few years NAIA track and field has started to show they are much more competitive and actually close to the D2 caliber of athletes. If you are looking for schools in the Mid-West or Southern parts of the US, look at the NAIA level.

IMPORTANT: NAIA Rule Changes. You must now register with the NAIA Clearinghouse.

Junior College Track and Field

The junior college level has a very wide range of talent in track and field. Some athletes are at the Junior College level because they are academically ineligible to be at the D1 level. Other athletes didn’t quite have the times or marks to move straight on to a four year school so they are at a junior college working to improve and move on after a couple years. Scholarships can be hard to find at this level because many programs aren’t fully funded or if they are, they are restricted in how they can use their scholarships. You will need to check with each program and coach to see what opportunities are available.

Track-and-Field History

Attending a college track-and-field summer camp could be the best recruiting move you can make.

Author: David Frank

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