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The huddle

December 20, 2017

Recruiting Horror Story: William & Mary Recruiting Trip Gone Wrong

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As a high school student-athlete, the thrill of recruiting seemed seral. Thinking about coaches potential reaching out to me was a dream that was about to happen.  The college that I was most excited for was William & Mary and the opportunity to meet with the track coach sent chills up my spine. The coach seemed to embody everything I could ask as far as a coach was concerned. He was excited to meet me, and after many conversations, my official visit was scheduled. I was excited to meet my host because the coach had spoken highly of her. However, on my first official visit of my recruiting period, I learned that a coach could sell a college from just a phone call. 

After a short flight down to Williamsburg Virginia on a Saturday night is when my visit began. The coach came and picked my family and me up at the airport, once we arrived on campus, my highly anticipated host arrived fashionably late. We immediately headed off to a restaurant where my family and I got dinner with the coach and his family. We parted ways after our meal; there was no time to talk because the coach had to get back to work. I was dropped off at my host’s dorm and quickly realized I did not have anywhere to sleep. I was left to put my bag on the floor beneath piles of dirty clothes, old paper, and food. The room situation put me off. However, we were going to spend some time exploring the campus before bedtime, so I tried to overlook the sleeping situation.

As we were about to start the night tour of the campus, my host’s boyfriend joined us; I soon realized I was going to be the third wheel on this trip. We walked around campus, and as they only talked to one another, I felt incredibly uncomfortable. During this awkward tour, my host and her boyfriend decided to take me to the track and field practice field, keep in mind it was midnight and dark outside. All of a sudden I noticed my host and her boyfriend were gearing up to throw some implements (a track and field term for throwing a hammer). The last thing I wanted to do is throw anything onto a field of hammer holes.  It was a very awkward situation, as I knew I was not allowed to be throwing hammers on college visits, nor did I want to be throwing anything in the dark. After spending more time at the field watching my host and her boyfriend chuck the hammers around, we went back to the dorm. To my surprise, my host’s boyfriend joined us, and I was left to awkwardly navigate getting ready for bed while my host and her boyfriend were in the same room. I excused myself and found my way to the bathroom where a mess greeted me. The garbage was overflowing which covered most of the floor, and the entire bathroom smelled like urine. After trying not to touch anything, I prepared for bed. I went back to my room where my host and her mate did not make me feel welcomed. After some more awkward moments, I said I was tired from traveling and told them I was ready to go to bed,  I took a blanket and slept on the floor. My host and her boyfriend hung out cuddling on the bed above me. I was not happy.

The next morning I went to a Sunday afternoon soccer game and toured more of the facilities. After the game and sports facility tour, I found myself questioning the team’s dynamics, the coach’s poor judgment of the team’s behavior, and my desire to compete there. After another night on the floor, I spent my last day on campus with the academic advisor and coaches. My host left me in a lecture hall while she went to her classes. The professor called on me and asked who I was; I had to explain that I was a recruit and my host was in another class. Do not misunderstand, I did appreciate my time at the college, but I was not interested in these subjects and spent four hours of my time listening to two lectures. I felt as though I was left out to dry and that no one knew what to do with me.

Finally, after exchanging goodbyes, I was on my way back to the airport to digest my visit. Despite the excellent academics and overall kindness of the coaching staff, there were too many things that made me feel uncomfortable. On a positive note, I attended other official visits that were more to my liking.

Updated 5/17/19

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