ABOUT WEBBER LACROSSE
Webber International University (Babson Park, FL) Lacrosse is a fully funded, NAIA Division I program. Webber offers athletic and merit scholarships, full time coaches, athletic trainers and strength coaches. Has budgets for equipment and travel that rival many NCAA programs. We are sponsored by Under Armor Uniforms and Warrior Equipment. In addition, students can take advantage of regional scholarships and Federal Aid using their FASFA, EASE, Florida Prepay, and Florida Bright Futures grant programs.
In 2022, the Warriors posted an 11-6 record and finished the season as the #10 Ranked team in The NAIA national coaches poll. Attackman Chase Jackson was named AAC Offensive Player of the Year while leading the nation in points. In 2023, the Warriors shocked the NAIA lacrosse world with a 16-4 record, as high as a #3 ranking, and a trip the the National Semifinals.
YEAR AT A GLANCE
FALL BALL: The fall segment, Webber will play teams from our area and do some intersquad scrimmages like the annual Green vs. White Scrimmage. In the fall, the team will Practice 3-4 times per week while also engaged in a our athletic strength & conditioning program led by our full-time strength coach.
SPRING SEASON: In the spring of 2023, Webber played 20 games, finishing with an 16-4 record and a NAIA Final Four Appearance. Team travel is a huge part of the experience with 4 flights in 2023 being the most in the nation. The Warriors qualified for their third consecutive AAC playoff appearance and advanced to the Conference Semifinals for the first time.
Webber played in the highly competitive Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC) and which boasts the current national champion as well as three of the top 5 teams in the country.
Students are expected to excel in their area of study at Webber. Webber offers both academic advising and support for students. This includes monitored study as well as a tutor and writing center. The Warrior Lacrosse Team had a 3.2 team GPA in the fall of 2021. For more about the university go to www.webber.edu.
WHAT IS THE NAIA?
Did you know that NFL Great Walter Payton played for an NAIA school? So did Michael Pippin and Dennis Rodman! The NAIA has been around for years and years. However, lacrosse is new to the the association, with 2015 being the first year of sponsorship.
One common question that most young athletes ask when considering College Sports is what are the differences in the divisions?
It is a massively misunderstood part of the process, but it is understandable why people are confused.
In most of the world Division 1 is better than Division 2…naturally.
This is not how it works in College Sports!
Each university offering college sports must apply for affiliation to a college sports division, the major ones being:
NCAA D1 (4 year Schools) Athletic Scholarship - YES
NCAA D2 (4 year Schools) Athletic Scholarship - YES
NCAA D3 (4 year Schools) Athletic Scholarship - NO
NAIA (4 year Schools) Athletic Scholarship - YES
NJCAA (2 year Schools) Athletic Scholarship - YES
There is a lot of criteria considered when a university decides on what division it will compete in, like finances, location, and preference.
One major factor:
How many sports does the university offer?
· Typically NCAA Division 1 teams have many sports and a larger American Football or Basketball Team
· Universities with fewer teams or lack of American Football may opt for NCAA Division 2 or NAIA.
Whatever division the university decides to compete in normally ALL the other sports follow and compete in that division. Being in NCAA Division 1 does not automatically make the program better.
· Just because a soccer team competes in NCAA Division 1, it does not automatically make them better than all NCAA Division 2 & 3 and NAIA programs.
· Many of the best college golf teams are in NCAA Division 2 or NAIA
· The top NAIA Tennis programs can have stronger players than a low-level NCAA
It is true that the elite NCAA Division 1 teams, due to the popularity of the sports programs lead by American Football and Basketball, tend to attract the top American sporting talents to their schools, which often means that the other sports at those schools are strong too.
But unless you are Olympic level- or youth international level athlete, who usually are recruited by the top 30-40 NCAA Division 1 teams, you must remember that there are many other factors than just the division to consider when evaluating a school.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), are two separate governing bodies of college athletics. The NCAA is the governing body for around 1200 schools. It consists of three divisions (Division I, II, and III) and oversees 23 sports. Divisions I and II both offer athletic scholarships, with over 126,000 student-athletes receiving partial or full athletic scholarships. However, Division III student-athletes can only receive academic or non-athletic scholarships – no athletic scholarships are allowed. Each year, the NCAA hands out about $1 billion in athletic scholarships, with the rest coming from the individual school.
Conversely, the NAIA consists of 300 schools and 13 sports. The NAIA is a smaller association than the NCAA, with just over 60,000 students. It includes two divisions (Division I and II) and Division I in the NAIA is comparable to Division II in the NCAA. Over 90% of schools in the NAIA offer scholarships and NAIA athletes receive an average of $7,000 of financial aid. However, it is impossible to say how many athletes receive scholarships because the NAIA does not have a central database like the NCAA.
The amount and type of scholarship you receive will depend on, among other things, which association your school is affiliated with and which division within that association your school plays in. Generally speaking, eligibility requirements and scholarship rules for the NCAA are stricter than those of the NAIA. For athletes pursuing a college scholarship, being familiar with these requirements is very important.
When looking for an athletic scholarship, remember that there are options in both the NCAA and NAIA. Being educated and knowledgeable on these two associations will help you in your search to find the best college for you.
SOURCE: BIRMINGHAM UNITED SOCCER