The College Money Guys - September 2019


Award The


Send Your Kids to College, Keep Your Money at Home



Having called Houston home most of my life, I have two favorite football teams: the Texans and anyone who plays against the Cowboys. I get my fierce loyalty to the team from my mother — some of my earliest memories are of her shouting “Get ‘em, get ‘em, get ‘em!” at the TV whenever the Oilers were playing. Thanks to her, I own just about everything Earl Campbell would sign, including a football helmet and his line of smoked sausages. I’d also get into full-on fights with the kid down the street who was a Steelers fan, but I won’t pin that on my mother.  With the season about to kick off, I’m more than a little excited. Our odds are looking good this year. Watson’s definitely coming into his own as a quarterback. If we can avoid the injuries that plagued us last year, we’ve got a shot at the Super Bowl. But, if you’re reading this, chances are you’re (slightly) more concerned about your own student athlete’s future than that of the Texans. First of all, I won’t dispute that games like football can take you places. In the past, I’ve been fortunate enough to meet with business advisor and former Vikings quarterback Fran Tarkenton. From high up in his Atlanta office, it was clear to me that you don’t have to stick with football forever to build a great future for yourself. But what I try to remind students is that getting anywhere near Tarkenton’s level of success on athletic talent alone is a long shot.

It’s the same every year. The speaker asks all 750-plus students in attendance to stand, then picks out four from the front row. “Everyone except these four, sit back down,” he’ll say. “The people still standing are the ones who will get full-ride athletic scholarships,” he explains. “Those are your odds.” This can be quite a wake-up call for these high schoolers. This isn’t to say your student should give up on their dreams of being the next great sports star, but they should have a robust backup plan. Let’s just say I’m glad I didn’t gamble my own future on my high school baseball skills. Thankfully, students can still leverage their athletic talents to get a great education. In honor of football season, we’ve decided to cover this approach in detail inside this issue of the newsletter! So, whether you’re anxious about your own athlete getting into college or the Texans making the playoffs, my answer remains the same: The future’s looking bright. All that’s left to do is grab your tailgating gear and enjoy the game.

“This isn’t to say your student should give up on their dreams of being the next great sports star, but they should have a robust backup plan.”

So many high school sports stars place all their college hopes on their ability to play. I see it all the time through my work. The Rockets sponsor an SAT camp every year to help student athletes get into college, and I’m a frequent speaker at these events. Before I go up and talk about the nitty-gritty details of the college application process, the event’s coordinator does their best to shake these kids of the conviction they’ll get full athletic scholarships.

I’ll see you there,

–Bra nnon Lloyd

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School is back in session, but your child may be bringing home more than just random facts. Germs and bacteria that spread the common cold and flu are most prevalent in schools, but while these illnesses are strong, prevention is simple. Teach your kids how to prevent the spread of bacteria this season with these helpful tips.  BUT MOMMY DOESN’T COVER HER NOSE!  Kids learn more by watching what you do rather than listening to what you tell them to do. Get in the habit of covering your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze, and then wash your hands. Make hand sanitizer and facial tissues readily available in your home and be sure to wash your hands before every meal. In addition, stick to healthy habits when you do feel sick. Drink

fluids, get plenty of rest, and seek medical attention when it’s warranted. If your children see you taking care of yourself, they will be more likely to do the same for themselves in the future. AHH ... AHH ... ACHOO! Hand washing and nose blowing are about as fun as … well, just that. It’s no wonder children don’t want to take time out of their busy play schedules to combat nasty germs. Instead of making these important steps a chore, make basic hygiene fun. Use fun songs to teach the proper way to cover a sneeze, or do a science experiment to teach your children about the germs that are spread through just one sneeze. (According to research, sneezes can travel anywhere from 19–26 feet at 100 miles per hour!) For crafty kids, let them decorate tissue boxes

or hand sanitizer containers to give hygiene some flair. Soon enough, you’ll find them being smarter about their health. As kids pack into classrooms this fall, germs will fly faster than this past summer did. Prevent the spread of the common cold and flu by learning more tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention online at


“The college application process has become so complex, but TCMG helped us navigate it successfully. The workshops, one-on-one coaching, practice interviews, etc. all helped our daughter secure a wonderful spot in college, along with a number of scholarships! We highly recommend TCMG.” –Jane Gehring

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HAVE A LAUGH budgets for their sports programs can afford looking for the best of the best. When applying to these schools, your student will be in direct competition with every star athlete from every high school in the country, regardless of whether they applied or not. When a player is good enough, schools will approach them, not the other As Brannon mentions on the cover, for the vast majority of student athletes, getting scholarships to play sports isn’t an option. As much as we may admire college football stars (and the huge amount of scholarships they earn), these players represent a fraction of those who tried to make the cut. We’re never going to tell a student they shouldn’t chase their dreams, but we will urge them to have a strong backup plan — specifically smaller, NAIA schools (members of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics). Here’s why. BIGGER FISH, SMALLER POND State schools and other institutions with huge

way around. Smaller schools don’t have that option and are grateful for any talented athletes they can attract. WIN-WIN While you may never see NAIA games on ESPN, having a winning team is still a huge money maker for any college. A good athletics program keeps alumni engaged, improves campus life, brings in sponsorships, and generates headlines locally (and in towns where they play away games). Even if a school doesn’t seem “sports focused,” odds are they’ll see value in recruiting their next star player. NON-ATHLETIC ATHLETIC SCHOLARSHIPS Smaller liberal arts colleges usually don’t have the grants or budget to offer athletic scholarships, but they’ve found a clever workaround. They offer players generous academic scholarships

to get them to sign on. The difference is, these scholarships aren’t tied to your student’s ability to play. If they have a career-ending injury, they’re still covered for all four years. BRAINS AND BRAWN We’re just going to say it: Smaller liberal arts schools offer a better education than most big universities. Smaller classes taught by professors instead of TAs make a huge difference in a student’s ability to succeed. By attending one of these smaller schools, your student can get a great education while playing a sport they love.


INGREDIENTS • 1 cup sugar • 1 cup fresh basil leaves

• 6 cups frozen mixed berries • 3/4 cup fresh lemon juice

DIRECTIONS 1. In a saucepan over high heat, combine sugar with 1 cup of water, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves, creating a syrup-like consistency.  2. Remove syrup from heat, add basil, cover, and let stand for 15 minutes. Strain syrup into bowl and refrigerate until cold. 3. In a blender, combine syrup with frozen berries and lemon juice. Purée until smooth. 4. Transfer to a square baking pan, cover in plastic wrap, and freeze until set, about 2 hours.  5. Scoop and serve.

Inspired by Good Housekeeping

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Texans, Rockets, and Scholarships

Teach Your Kids Flu Prevention


The Best Strategy for Student Athletes

Basil Berry Sorbet

Honoring the Canines of 9/11



In the immediate aftermath of 9/11, thousands of New Yorkers took to the streets to clear rubble, offer supplies, and search for survivors. It was a powerful act of resilience in a deeply trying time, and while most of the individuals helping with the disaster stood on two feet, more than 300 canines also answered the call to service.  Dogs of all breeds and backgrounds, including search and rescue dogs, police dogs, service dogs, and therapy dogs, were brought in to help find and care for survivors in the wake of the destruction. They worked tirelessly alongside rescue crews as they searched through the debris. Search and rescue dogs and their handlers worked 12–16-hour days, searching for survivors and victims. They worked through dangerous conditions: Many dogs burned their paws as they dug through hot rubble, and both handlers and canines inhaled toxic dust. The task was both physically and mentally exhausting for the

dogs during their shifts. Some dogs that found deceased victims refused to eat or interact with other animals. Search and rescue dogs became increasingly stressed and depressed the longer they searched without any results, mirroring their handlers. It wasn’t uncommon for handlers to stage mock “findings” of survivors to keep the dogs’ spirits up.  Fortunately, the sacrifices these dogs and their handlers made did not go unnoticed. Many dog owners were inspired to earn their search and rescue certifications after the events of 9/11, promising to aid in future disasters and hopefully lessen the impact of such catastrophes.  After 9/11, various researchers conducted many studies examining the effect this kind of work has on animals, both physically and mentally. Many of these studies wouldn’t be possible without the AKC Canine Health Foundation, so if you’re looking to give back this September, visit them at their website to see how you can help:


Yeowell Family Patterson Family Hansen Family

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