“My Kid Has a Shot at the Pros” say 26 percent of American parents

by Mr. Sheehy

According to a recent poll from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, 26 percent of U.S. parents whose children in high school play sports hope their child will become a professional athlete one day. Among families with household incomes of less than $50,000 annually, the number is 39 percent.

According to the National Collegiate Athletic Association, only a tiny percentage of high school athletes actually go on to play professionally — roughly 1 in 168 high school baseball players will get drafted by a Major League Baseball team, and just 1 in 2,451 men’s high school basketball players will get drafted by a National Basketball Association team.

“It’s extremely difficult to make the pros; we all know that,” says Tom Farrey, the director of the Sports and Society Program at the Aspen Institute and author of Game On: The All-American Race to Make Champions of Our Children. Yet, in recent years, he has started to see a shift among the parents of kids playing youth sports. “The difference is that a lot of parents today see those odds and say, well, I’d better get started early with my kid.”

Anders Kelto, NPR