First of all, in my opinion/experience, if they don’t give you a full scholarship it means that they don’t believe in you. They give other positions scholarships and the guys end up sitting and not playing. Why don’t they tell all the QB’s to prove themselves and then maybe they will give some money next year, not happening. Somehow it is OK to crap on the specialists. That is just my opinion.
Back to the meat of this topic, when to say NO to a scholarship. Before I get to the answer let it be known that not all kids have the same financial situation or geographical situation which play into decisions families make. If Pop’s has $$$ then a lot of what I have to say may not apply.
Ok, with the new transfer rules, if you get ANY amount of $$$$ (read $1.00) scholarship from a school you can not play for another team in the same division (ex D1 to D1) without sitting out a year. So if the new coach says that you’re the greatest thing since sliced bread and gives you 0$ scholarship [PWO] , you can leave and immediately play for another team next fall (once you find out that you ain’t his guy next fall). If the coach gave your family ANY amount of $$$, your screwed and HAVE to STAY and PAY.
If you feel you were lied to or 100% know that you are not getting a full ride scholarship (be realistic, if you not good no one will give you a full ride in D1), put yourself into the portal ASAP after the season is over. D2 schools do give full rides.
In the world of specialists, you are treated like dirt (scholarship wise) so keep your options OPEN. Don’t put yourself into a position to miss playing a year because a coach verbally said “you’re my guy, next year”. Means nothing without the $$$ paperwork. NOTHING. There are exceptions to this and some coaches keep their word but they are far and few. The higher the division, D1 especially, the more you need to protect yourself.
Just to repeat myself, not every specialist has the same circumstances and/or goals so if the above doesn’t fit your unique situation, do what fits your requirements.