Sept. 10, 2009
By MOISEKAPENDA BOWER
The ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American honor bestowed upon Rice senior forward Erin Scott following her junior season was a product of her hard work and determination in the classroom.
Scott's steady climb up the Rice soccer record book in several categories is the result of that same work ethic and tireless effort. That Scott has excelled academically and athletically at Rice reflects her unyielding commitment to both soccer and her studies.
"It's obviously great when all the work that I've put in pays off," Scott said. "It really makes it worth it when you feel all your hard work start to pay off."
Scott earned the academic accolades from the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) after maintaining a 4.00 grade point average while majoring in psychology in Rice's accelerated curriculum. That national honor followed recognition by Conference USA and District VI, which includes colleges and universities located in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico. Scott became the first player in program history to earn All-America distinction, and she was one of only two C-USA players recognized by ESPN The Magazine.
Thriving in the classroom has always come second nature for Scott, but her intellectual prowess didn't lessen the significance of having her academic exploits lauded.
"I was really excited," Scott said of being named an All-American. "I honestly didn't see it coming because I thought only seniors would get it, so I was trying not to get my hopes up. My parents (Mark and Mary Scott) and I were really, really happy and really excited."
On the pitch, Scott has been equally proficient. Already the owner of the school mark for shots on goal with 91 (the old record was 86), Scott is third in program history in goals (19) and points (54), and second in shots (176) and assists (16). She needs four goals to set a new program standard, 11 shots to claim sole possession of that record, nine assists to break that school mark, and 11 points to become the most prolific scorer in Rice annals. From the moment she arrived on campus in 2006, Scott sharpened her focus on being a consistent and productive player for the Owls.
"I knew that when I came in I wanted to make an impact right off the bat. My main goal at the time was to be a freshman that would start and really contribute to the team," Scott said. "I guess I figured that breaking records would just come if I keep working hard. If I kept being a significant asset to the team, that would come later.
"In the back of my mind I'm always trying to reach that standard that's in front of me and beat it. Now that it's tangible, I'm really excited to see if I can break those records."
Once Scott finishes putting her stamp on the Rice soccer program, she will pursue a career in medicine. As with the other aspects of her life, Scott is constructing a definitive post-Rice academic plan, one that includes additional course work and a coordinated postgraduate effort with her fiancé. It seems Scott long ago mastered the skill of time management, so juggling future plans isn't much of a challenge.
"I've always had a really strong desire to do really well at school and soccer," Scott said. "I knew it would be a challenge to be able to do both at this level. Just keeping that desire up (was key), and then the time management came. I learned how to do it and got better and better at it."
Showcasing excellence on the field and in the classroom puts Scott on course to be one of Tomorrow's Leaders.