Reposted from a D3hoops.com public message board:
I attended a talk/discussion of student/athletes at Amherst that included students, profs. and led by the AD. Several bits of info that may be of interest to posters:
1. Amherst was most pleased the past year to get a high number of top students who are also “stars” in their sports. These are students that will be impact players and do not require “tips” or whatever they are called in admissions. I forget the “label” the AD put on them….1A?.
2. Amherst is incorporating a program that introduce professors with students that play sports. Teams have faculty advisors and players work on community service projects with faculty, etc……all to reduce any “division” in perception mainly…between teachers and sport playing students. Varsity sports should be considered at Amherst as any other activity outside of class such as publications, singing, etc. It seems to be going well.
3. Coaches are taking a more aggressive approach in recruiting due to the changing world of college recruiting … even in Div3.
The recruits are more knowledgeable about options, and top recruits are involved in their sports outside of high school….such as AAU/club teams and for longer periods of the year.
4. Once top impact students are identified, willing professors are encouraged to “recruit” the individual.
5. There are “particular” events that conference coaches are allowed to attend to see players and to be seen. These region wide events in a given sport bring together players that have been considered qualified academically for IVY schools, Patriot League schools, UAA, NESCAC, etc.
Point one had been mentioned here previously. If true for Amherst and not for Williams (I have no idea either way), that is something Williams needs to work on — to the extent non-tipped athletes go on to become stars and not just minor contributors, that is a huge advantage when both schools are constrained to 66 tips, in total (and Williams is already at a slight disadvantage since those tips are allocated among more varsity sports than at Amherst).
Point five I’ve also heard before, and point three does not surprise me. But points two and four are very interesting. I wonder if Williams does the same thing? I think that, time permitting, professors calling admitted students generally (not just athletes) makes a lot of sense. And while Williams teams are very active in community service (see the most recent examples here), I’m not sure whether they work together with professors on any of those projects. I wonder also if Williams teams have faculty advisors. Sounds like some ideas that are worthy of consideration.