November 22, 2005
Synopsis: Student Athletes takes a look at the life of college athletes. In contrast to the common perception of pampered superstars given a school pass free of serious academic obligations, the program shows student athletes fulfilling normal classroom duty, receiving degrees and going on to success in the world beyond the hedges.
The documentary follows four Rice University athletes throughout the course of the school year as they strive to balance the demands of their sports with their academic responsibilities. Realizing that the chance to make it in the professional ranks is small, each one also keeps long-range goals in mind in preparing for a future outside of sports.
"So much of what you see in the news about athletes these days is negative," said Jim Bailey, the documentary's producer. "It seems like they spend more time in court, accompanied by a lawyer, than they do on the court or the field. We wanted to show the other side, young men and women managing to achieve both athletic and academic goals, and representing their universities at the highest level."
The four athletes profiled are baseball player Chris Kolkhorst, women's basketball player Lindsey Maynard, and football players Clifford Sparks and Jeff Vanover. Three of the four completed their athletic eligibility last season while Sparks returned for his senior season this fall.
The documentary is an independent project of Sunset Productions under the auspices of Texas Foundation for the Arts. Producer was Jim Bailey and associate producer was Nancy Burch. Editing and technical support was provided by Mark Susman and Mike Snow of Fast Cut Media.
Upcoming Film at the Museum of Fine Arts on Friday, November 4, 2005. Click for more info.