When Emily Madril received a phone call from Florida State head women’s soccer coach Mark Krikorian about enrolling a semester early, the Navarre soccer star had a decision to make.
Does she stay in high school to enjoy all of the memories and moments attached to a senior year rather than graduate in December or does she take the offer and run it with it, cashing in on it as if she is scoring a goal?
Ultimately, the chance to get a head start on a promising collegiate career with an elite program – the Seminoles won the national title in 2014 – was difficult to pass up.
“I wasn’t like all of a sudden I have to say yes because I knew I would have to leave my family and friends, but it wasn’t too hard of a decision,” Madril said. “I was definitely eager to say yes.”
The trend of student-athletes enrolling early began in the late 1990s. Most of the time it involves Division I football recruits.
Madril isn’t the first student-athlete from Navarre to travel on the early graduation route.
Clemson football star Jordan Leggett did it in 2012 and is on track to get his degree in December.
“We’ve had a few athletes do it,” said Navarre guidance counselor Elizabeth Harman. “But it’s not something that is really common.”
Navarre girls soccer coach Rob Simon doesn’t believe it will become a growing trend for student-athletes because the situation isn’t ideal for everyone.
But it is a good one for Madril, who has scored 75 goals and dished out 52 assists in two seasons with the Raiders.
“For her, it’s a great opportunity,” Simon said. “Mark called me in February to ask my thoughts on it and while it’s tough to lose a player like that halfway through the season, she has a chance to get a leg up at a great program like FSU.”
Read more in the May 12 edition of Navarre Press or subscribe online here.