Michele Goebel has played soccer since she can remember. While all those years prepared her to be capable of playing for a Division I team in college, she was clear that the most important aspect of her college search was finding a school she loved, soccer or not. Luckily for her, she was able to find both in Denison University, so let’s take a closer look at Michele’s decision:
What schools from other divisions were interested in you/did you consider going to?
I was talking to the coaches from Samford in Alabama and Gardner Webb in North Carolina (both D1) and came close to going to Samford.
Why did you choose to play at Denison instead?
I chose to play at Denison because they have a very successful program, I love the school and campus, I clicked with the girls and coaches, and I am able to be at a great school and receive a quality education while still being able to play soccer.
What have you been able to be involved in at Denison outside of soccer?
I am in a sorority (Kappa Alpha Theta) and am involved in service projects.
What do you think have been some benefits of playing D3 instead of a higher division?
Although soccer is a huge commitment, we have two games a week and practice every day, we don’t travel as much or as far as D1 and because of that I am able to be involved in a sorority and do things on campus because I am actually on campus more than if I was at a D1 school and constantly traveling. I think this is a huge benefit because I wouldn’t like being gone all the time and not being able to go down to the sorority house and see my friends or participate in activities on campus. Also, it gives you more time to focus on school and simply have time for yourself. Don’t get me wrong, it’s definitely still a struggle to fit in all your homework after practice but I feel like I still have more time than if I was traveling a lot more.
A lot of people say D3 is just an extension of high school sports, how would you compare the competition levels between the two?
I COMPLETELY disagree with that comment. The competition is much harder and the size, strength, speed, and skill of the players in college are a completely different and much higher level. In high school, there may have been four or five girls on the team who played club and were trained well but in college every single girl has played club since she was 7 or 8 and been trained since she was a child. Also, the attitude is much more serious in college. It’s definitely not just a childish rivalry when you play a team, there is a much higher competitive attitude and people take it more seriously.