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Famous Athletes Who Started Their Career With A Scholarship

Sports scholarships give budding athletes the chance to play college sport alongside earning a college degree. Scholarships come in various funding packages, some bigger than others, but they offer financial aid that many athletes need to have the opportunity to play college sports.

Many celebrities around the world started out playing a college sport. Many of them started their career with an athletics scholarship, running track, and competing professionally, their athletic passions coming before the talents they now show on the big screen.

Uzo Aduba

Uzo Aduba is known for her stunning performance in the Netflix show Orange Is the New Black. However, she started her career differently at Boston University, where she was awarded a track scholarship. She excelled as part of the track team, all the while also excelling as an opera singer.  Aduba credits the commitment and motivation needed to excel at Boston as a track scholar as helping with her career in acting and singing.  She ran the Boston marathon in 5 hours and held the record for sprinting at the university. Both fantastic achievements indeed helped her reach the position of fame she has today.

Dwayne The RockJohnson

Dwayne Johnson, also known as The Rock, is one of the most well-known WWE icons. He is also found great heights as an internationally renowned actor and performer. However, before his career with acting and well before his career as a record-breaking wrestler, Johnson started out as an athlete at the University of Miami. Here he accepted a collegiate scholarship to run track and athletics. He graduated in 1995 and moved his way into WWE to begin his leap to wrestling stardom.

John Wayne

Formerly known as Marion Robert Morison, John Wayne was an American actor and songwriter. He grew to fame and his unique status through his starring roles in Western films, for example, El Dorado, the Rio Grande, and How The West Was Won. Each one made the man an Icon within Hollywood. Yet, his career did not start with acting. In 1925, Wayne, a high school football player, won a place at the University of Southern California on an athletic scholarship. Once he started at USC, he played on the varsity football team but had to give up his spot due to a broken collarbone. He eventually found himself in front of a camera and never looked back.

Sheryl Crow

Sheryl Crow is one celebrity that started running track in high school. She ran hurdles and made her way to the state championship, which is a phenomenal achievement for any young athlete. Sheryl went on to become a famous American musician and songwriter.

Is there something in the water that encourages college athletes to rise to stardom? Perhaps it is the tenacity and determination needed to perform at a college level or the opportunity to build interpersonal skills. Scholarships afforded these young celebrities to play at the college level; their talents then lifted them into celebrity status.