Playing the Game by P-IndependentPublish

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This inside look at the athletic recruiting process reveals exactly how the athletic recruiting game is played by coaches, prospects, parents, administrators, admissions officers, and even college presidents in the Ivy League and NESCAC. This book tells how Trinity College became better than Harvard, Princeton, and Yale in squash by recruiting around the world to capture the national title; why a Brown lacrosse coach left the Ivy League recruiting rat race to seek a more sane lifestyle at Bates; and how the admission deans at Princeton, Brown, and Dartmouth view the whole athletic recruiting process. A compelling combination of profiles, stories, and excerpts of interviews reveals why Ivy League coaches have to work so much harder than their Division I peers to identify qualified student athletes.

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									Playing the Game
Author: Chris Lincoln
Other: Jay Fiedler
Table of Contents

Foreword by Jay Fiedler, Dartmouth College alumnus and starting quarterback for the Miami Dolphins

Introduction
The author’s experience as a recruited college athlete is tied into an overview of how the process works
today – including the way in which recruited athletes go through a special admissions process that is
separate from their high school peers.

Chapter 1 Big Time Player
The story of a high school football star’s recruitment by Dartmouth, and how the league’s unique
Academic Index (A-I) football bands work

Chapter 2 On The Road
How Ivy coaches scour the country (and sometimes the world) seeking athletic talent

Chapter 3 The Closing
For football coaches, the Official Visit of prospects to campus in January is a time to seal the deal

Chapter 4 Lists & Liaisons
Rules of the game that is played between the athletic department and the admissions office regarding
recruited athletes

Chapter 5 Boosters (and Not The Kind You Think)
The story of the whole Academic Index system and the controversy surrounding it, including the use of
“index boosters” to help a team meet league requirements

Chapter 6 Whose Career Is It, Anyway?
Soccer moms and hockey dads are now part of the Ivy recruiting process – for better and worse

Chapter 7 Low A-I, High GPA
The story of an Ivy football player with an Academic Index just above the league floor who has carried his
team’s highest GPA

Chapter 8 Studs, Lies & Videotape
How some prospects and their parents abuse the Ivy League’s reliance on a verbal commitment to attend
a given school, or use athletics to get in and then never play

Chapter 9 The Admission Interviews
Eye opening excerpts of interviews with Admission Deans at Princeton, Brown and Dartmouth

Chapter 10 She’s A Stud
The methods used by Ivy women coaches to land the best Ivy women athletes, and how they compete
with each other for talent

Chapter 11 Under Fire
A coach in the hot seat fights to keep his job while competitors in the league acknowledge what a tough
recruiting challenges he faces

Chapter 12 Home Run
The success of the Princeton baseball program illustrates the reasons why The Tigers have enjoyed a
decade of athletic dominance in the Ivy League

Chapter 13 Show Me The Money
How financial aid works for Ivy athletes and the grant/scholarship scandal at Brown

Chapter 14 Better Than Harvard, Princeton & Yale
How Trinity squash recruited around the world to become National Champions

Chapter 15 2003, A.D.
Excerpts of candid interviews with Athletic Directors at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Dartmouth and Brown

Chapter 16 From Brown to Bates: Seeking Sanity in NESCAC
How a lacrosse coach changed his lifestyle by leaving the Ivy recruiting rat race behind

Chapter 17 Perfect Placement
The college placement counselor at the exclusive Lakeside School in Seattle (where Bill Gates prepped
for Harvard) reveals how he helps to position athletes for admission

Chapter 18 Panthers & Purple Cows
An inside look at the top two sports schools in NESCAC – and in Division III – Middlebury and Williams.

Chapter 19 The Transparent Lord Jeffrey
How the Director of Admission at Williams came to Amherst and improved the athletic recruiting process
by making it transparent to an angry faculty

Afterword

Acknowledgements
Index
Description

This inside look at the athletic recruiting process reveals exactly how the athletic recruiting game is
played by coaches, prospects, parents, administrators, admissions officers, and even college presidents
in the Ivy League and NESCAC. This book tells how Trinity College became better than Harvard,
Princeton, and Yale in squash by recruiting around the world to capture the national title; why a Brown
lacrosse coach left the Ivy League recruiting rat race to seek a more sane lifestyle at Bates; and how the
admission deans at Princeton, Brown, and Dartmouth view the whole athletic recruiting process. A
compelling combination of profiles, stories, and excerpts of interviews reveals why Ivy League coaches
have to work so much harder than their Division I peers to identify qualified student athletes.
Excerpt

Chapter 1Ground Rules“There is no secret, and I have no qualms about saying it, but athletic talent
makes a big difference in terms of our decisions. . . . The Ivy League principles always say that athletes
should be treated like everyone else, but they are not. And that’s what the presidents are sort of
struggling with: ‘Here’s what the principles say, and here’s what the practice is—and how to do we get
them to match.’”Michael Goldberger
Brown University

Director of AdmissionThirty years ago, as a senior at Hanover High School in Hanover, New
Hampshire, I was recruited to play college soccer and hockey by a few schools in the Northeast.
Coaches from Dartmouth, Middlebury, and the University of New Hampshire wrote me and called me and
encouraged me to come to their schools. The UNH soccer coach offered me a full scholarship, the only
one he had, saying he wanted to give it to an instate player. I held him off for as long as I could, into
March of my senior year, playing a game I’d been counseled to play by my next-door neighbor, the
Dartmouth men’s soccer coach, who was also recruiting me. Why, you might ask, would the Dartmouth
coach have encouraged me to string the UNH coach along, when he wanted me at his school, on his
team? Because he knew I might not get into Dartmouth, and he wanted me to keep all my options open.
“You have to understand,” he told me, “that the coaches are playing a game. They’re telling you they
want you, but they are telling twenty other kids they want them, too. They’re doing this because they
won’t be able to get all of you into their schools. So you have to protect yourself. You should tell each
one of them that their school is your first choice, so they will help you as much as possible. They’re
playing a game, and it’s only fair that you play it back.”Much as I felt uncomfortable with the approach, I
took his advice. It
turned out to be a smart move. I did not get into Dartmouth in April, despite the coach’s efforts to help
me. My board scores, a combined 980, were just too low. But I did get into Middlebury, which had a
better soccer team at the time, and I would never have been accepted had I not been recruited by the
soccer coach and by the hockey coach, who had even more pull with Admissions. I told each of them
that their school was my first choice. Along the way, I had been forced to pass up the UNH soccer
scholarship in March, when the coach there forced my hand, saying he needed time to find another
player if I wasn’t going to accept his offer. I told him I wanted to wait on
Dartmouth and Middlebury, and that I wanted to play both soccer and hockey, something I would not
have been able to do on a full soccer scholarship. He proceeded to find a player from New Jersey, Bobby
Black, who went on to be an All-American. You could say I did the UNH coach a favor.Since then, the
rules of the recruiting game in the Ivy League* and in the New England Small College Athletic Conference
(NESCAC**), the league to which Middlebury belongs, have dramatically evolved into an
increasingly complex procurement machine. Ivy League recruited athletes still enjoy a distinct advantage
in the admission process much as they did in my day, and many continue to be admitted with lower
academic credentials than their high school peers. But today...
Author Bio
Chris Lincoln
Chris Lincoln is a former recruited college athlete who passed up a full soccer scholarship to the
University of New Hampshire to play soccer and hockey at Middlebury College. He lives in Thetford,
Vermont.


Jay Fiedler
Jay Fiedler is a starting quarterback for the Miami Dolphins. He lives in Miami, Florida.
Reviews

[This book] is a serious, straight-faced – and hilarious – account of the Maypole dance the coaches have
to do every year in order to get even half-decent atheletes into the Ivy League."



"The Ivy League's dirty, little, atheltic secrets are exposed . . . and Ivy presidents will be blinking and
scrambling for safety."



"There's informative reading here for everyone involved in intercollegiate atheletics, from prospective
students-athletes through to college presidents."



"Part explainer, part expose and part polemic, [this book] fills a huge gap in our knowledge of how college
sports work."

								
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