More than 100 Frisco ISD student-athletes, along with their families and coaches, gathered Wednesday night to celebrate their signing with college programs during the 2018-19 school year. The first District-wide Signing Day Celebration, held at the Baylor Scott & White Sports Performance Center, honored athletes from all FISD sports who have signed during their senior year.
The event, made possible by FISD’s partnership with Baylor Scott & White and Nike, included a red-carpet entrance, unique photo opportunities for all in attendance and an appearance by Cowboys offensive lineman Connor Williams. Williams talked about his experience as a high school athlete at Coppell High School, the recruiting process that led him to The University of Texas at Austin and his goal of making it to the NFL.
After Williams spoke, FISD athletes also posed for a group photo, which included athletes from all the sports the District offers. FISD Athletic Director David Kuykendall, the event’s emcee, told the crowd of about 500 how proud he was to see the large group of athletes who have signed. He also pointed out how it’s a reflection of the District’s student-opportunities model that allows more students to participate in extracurricular activities such as athletics.
“If you’re wondering about the small-schools model,” Kuykendall said, “it’s working.”
All eight FISD high schools with current seniors – Memorial and Lebanon Trail will graduate their first classes in 2020 – had athletes sign on Wednesday, the first day of the February signing period for Class of 2019 athletes in various sports. Some athletes signed in the fall, and others will sign in the next few months.
Full scholarships cover tuition and fees, room, board and class-related books. Most student-athletes who receive scholarships receive an amount that covers a portion of the costs and can receive additional academic scholarships.
While each athletic scholarship has a different value, the financial benefit is clear. According to ScholarshipStats.com, the average NCAA athletic scholarship in 2017 was worth more than $12,000. During the typical four years of college, the average scholarship benefit is nearly $50,000.