Athletics or Academics?

Guest Blogger
Report cards are in and we have an average report card.  I am not happy about it.  My son’s response was “I did better than most of my friends”.  What? Was that your best? His response was along the lines that because of football games and practices he wasn’t able to do any better.  Houston, we have a problem!
I tried to give him the opportunity to show me he could balance but I also could have done a better job keeping up with the assignments and test and made sure he was studying more.  He felt like he was putting a decent effort in and looking back I disagree.  I do remember getting in late from practices and games and being exhausted but now we have another opportunity to make changes and its basketball season.
Often we have hopes to see our children achieve superior athletics dreams.  We imagine what life would be when they make it BIG one day and we often don’t put the same effort in their academics.  So when we allow them to bring home average grades with hopes of going off to college and eventually playing sports professionally we cannot be disappointed when their grades keep that dream from materializing.
Are we really setting them up for becoming a well-rounded high achiever?  We are quick to put our children in a sports camp but do we put that same investment in a tutor or sit down with them to help with school work?
I admit I was taking time to sit down and review homework and upcoming test.  I was giving up that time to make sure he understood what he was learning.   I was on the parent portal reviewing missing assignments and grades as they came in but I didn’t follow up on the assignments to make sure when he said there was no homework or test there was really none. Honestly, I should not have to. I recognize I must help him develop a daily regimen for properly documenting assignments and preparing accordingly. He has to learn how to be accountable for getting his work done and modifying his studying practices.   (I know I will still be on the portal daily and checking behind him)
I took TV time, phones, video games but I did not take sports.  Why?  At the end of the day if his grades are not where they need to be his dreams of sports in college and professionally may never happen.  If I want to help him become that superstar I know is inside of him I have to make sure we have our priorities straight!
As much as I love sports and much as I hate to see him sidelined, I also want him to be the best student he can be and we both must understand that being average isn’t what makes you stand out.  We know that for sure from the sports side because typically only the elite athletes’ moves forward not the average ones.  Decision time!  Athletics or Academics?