What sport would you recommend...
to your niece or nephew, assuming you had one around 7 years old?
Let's say they have shown to be a talented athlete, excelling in baseball, football, and basketball.
Would you put a tennis racquet in his hand?
My brother and I grew up playing baseball, so it was no surprise that he got his eldest son into baseball at a young age, excelling at the sport, not through talent but hard work. As he got into high school, he developed other interests like music and he was highly into academics. He is still good at baseball and still enjoys the sport, but not enough to pursue taking his skill level to the next level.
My niece, few years younger in age than my brother's eldest, was not pushed into any sports, as my brother was preoccupied with his eldest son. Few years ago, I bought her a tennis ball machine. She was a popular kid in the block and her friends helped her play with it. Once she developed an interest in it my brother started to give her lessons and later hired tennis coaches. She's more of a late bloomer, starting around 12 and now she's a freshman in high school, playing varsity tennis, and just now getting involved in local tournaments.
My youngest nephew, around 7 years old has mad talent with baseball, football, and basketball. He not only picks things up very quickly, but he has intense training habits and discipline. He's very popular with all of the parents because they can't believe how good he is in all of the sports he's involved in, often competing against older kids. Personally, I never seen a kid do sprints in the drive way like him, non-stop with such dedication on his own, with no one pushing him. All of the competitive genes obviously went to him. He lives and breathes to be the best.
My brother and I joked that he should put a tennis racquet in his youngest son's hand. At first, he just to use the tennis machine as batting practice but over time that thought is slowly changing, especially as the daughter has been excelling in tennis, so she could help him as well.
Competitively wise we thought that tennis might be his best shot (for my youngest nephew) towards a college scholarship.
My brother hasn't yet forked out college money for his youngest, as he has already with the two eldest. He's paid-off two college degrees through a state program, which is transferable should they receive a scholarship.
Seeing how Divsion 1 schools award many tennis scholarships to foreign players, it seems that more opportunities may arise with Division 2 and 3 schools, but I don't know how strong academically those schools are. I've been too lazy to research it.
We're thinking my niece best chance would be a Division 2 or 3 school, but if my youngest nephew gets into tennis, he might have the best shot playing at a Division 1 school...