Update: I just added to my original post my scholarship offer at SMU (26k/yr). However, I do consider this a distant third, and I cannot imagine choosing SMU over Notre Dame or Illinois.
Regardless of where I put my seat deposit, do you think sticker at a T14 (Michigan or Northwestern) would be better than my present scholarship offers? Because of my family background, I feel like I will be competitive for JAG. If I did JAG for at least ten years, which I would plan on doing, all my federal loans would be forgiven. This makes me think that sticker at a T14 might not be as much of a factor, since most of my loans will be forgiven eventually anyway. Seems worth it to get the better education/prestige that might come from a T14. Granted, I do like both Notre Dame and Illinois, and I think either with a scholarship is not a bad option. Please have at it. I like reading all the TLS opinions out there.
That's a tough call bruh. That's a big assumption to make with 200K of debt staring you in the face.
Sticker at a T14 is a big gamble - high risk and high reward. If you landed biglaw you're able to pay it off. If you land a JAG position or other quality LRAP qualifying options, you're good. It's those that paid sticker that don't land one of those two that are in trouble.