LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - It goes without saying that being a student-athlete can be quite a juggling act, especially at Bellarmine.
Putting together a class schedule and an academic workload that can balance with a difficult practice schedule is asking quite a lot. As a basketball player, there is not much of a break during the school year.
Even though I am a senior and have plenty of input in my academic schedule, basketball can cause all sorts of problems. In the fall semester, I had a relatively small amount of work I had to do on a daily basis, and that was a great way to start my last year of college. That allowed me to focus more on basketball and even start this blog, which has been very valuable to me.
This semester is quite different. Not only is my workload with basketball much heavier as we get into conference and postseason play, my classes are more intense than I expected this semester. With road trips every other week, I will miss a lot of classes and have to reschedule tests and quizzes and write most of my papers on the road.
As difficult as it has been to balance school and basketball, the challenges have forced me to realize how valuable basketball has been for me off the court.
First of all, basketball has forced me to take an active role in my education. Having to develop relationships and communicate with my professors and classmates has allowed me to develop an important network that I might not have otherwise established. These challenges also have given me a chance to help my teammates. They have tough classes and difficult professors, too, and often I have either had that professor before or am familiar with his or her coursework. Being able to help out my teammates provides another opportunity for us to build our relationships and that helps us on the court.
Coach Scott Davenport often talks about how smart people are willing to ask people for help, and that willingness is something I have really developed during my time at Bellarmine.
As I get ready to graduate I have realized how much I have benefited from the people around me and the work I have had to put in to be successful.
George Suggs is a senior communication major at Bellarmine, and his basketball column will appear every week on WAVE3.com.