This grading policy is essentially what every law school in America does.
Although I'm also not familiar with every ABA approved law school, that grading system seems pretty standard. The only big difference between a law schools grading system, generally, is the mean. The mean at our school is set pretty low at a 2.4 and students are required to maintain a 2.0 cumulative.
From my experience, the curves are actually set to help a 1L. For our first semester finals in contracts, the highest grade out of 120 points was a 79. I believe the mean was 50-55. If the exams aren't curved, the majority of students would fail because it is quite difficult to discuss or even spot every possible issue on an exam in the time frame given. So you are competing against your classmates by trying to get as many points as possible. And as mentioned above, all those students were A/B students in undergrad so the competition makes it much more difficult.
As far as scholarships go, most 1Ls lose them after the first year because they have no clue as to how difficult it will be to get a 3.0 or 2.8 their first year. As legend mentioned, one should ask questions. Every one accepted to law school is used to getting As, and almost every student entering law school believes they will be in the top 10% percent of their class. Since 90% of them are wrong every year, that shows just how difficult 1L can be even with a curve.