August 20, 2009

Just sent out letters to a few recruits and had a couple of good questions that I thought worth sharing here:
"Right now with your qualifying times chart i would be a "C" recruit with other events very close to the freshman standard.  I've looked at the college and swimming program online and its in my top choices but I'm wondering if I have a realistic chance of making the swim team.  I want to come to one of the college visits this Fall but a big reason I would be going is swimming."

A great question that gets to the heart of using swimmers' times in recruiting.  The truth is times only tell a part of the picture.  Some of our best swimmers have come from 'C' recruits.  Isaac Rothenbaum didn't make the conference team as a freshman but was a conference champion as a sophomore.  Zach Jole was a pretty good, but not great recruit, but by the time he graduated he'd split the 10th fastest 100 breaststroke split in NCAA history.  What makes these guys successful is not the times they posted in high school, but their competitiveness, and their commitment to taking on big challenges.

Times go the other way too. Some really fast guys have a tough time balancing school and swimming. Laziness might also play a role, but most often its because they because they lacked that same competitiveness or desire and then get discouraged when a guy like Isaac or Zach starts kicking their butt in practice.

But times help us from being overwhelmed.  We could ask guys, "Are you ready to challenge yourself and your teammates every day?"  Everyone knows what the 'right' answer is.  If they can answer "yes" honestly, and add something to Carthage Swimming, that's a guy we want on our team.

Look for another recruiting question on Monday.  For now, time to hit the bike.



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