Sam Philpott, a 5th Year Senior and Captain of the Rollins College men’s basketball team, not only does he shine on the court but also in the classroom. A 3-time member of the Rollins Honor-Roll, and Sunshine State Conference Commissioner’s Honor Roll Sam was also a CoSIDA Third Team Academic All-American, and All-District. His help in leading Rollins to the NCAA Elite-8 earned him spots on both the All-Tournament Team of the SSC and NCAA DII South Region and a spot on the SSC Second-team as a fifth year.
Founder of LRT Sports, Keirsten Sires: “I feel that Sam is the type of athlete that all high school student-athletes should look up to. Being successful on the court is one thing but to be successful on the court and in the classroom is what I call real success.”
LRT: What was your favorite part about playing at Rollins?
Sam: Coach Klusman encouraging his players to be more than just basketball players was the most fulfilling part about playing at Rollins. I was always expected to prioritize basketball but was able to assume a number of other leadership roles on campus. I’d argue that doesn’t hold true for many schools and helps makes Rollins such a special place.
LRT: What do you think makes a good captain? What was the most challenging part of being a captain?
Sam: Leading by example is imperative to being an effective captain, along with maintaining emotional homeostasis. A leader can’t speak from both sides of the mouth. Anyone can verbally criticize others, but unless you are practicing what you’re preaching the message will fall on deaf ears.
LRT: What was it like to go to school so far away from home? Were you more nervous or excited?
Sam: I was initially nervous but got over the homesickness fairly quickly. Being so far away from Indiana, I was forced to fend for myself and figure things out. That being said, I learned not to take my parents for granted, and they provided invaluable support from afar during my entire tenure.
LRT: What is one piece of advice you would like to give to your younger self- basketball or non-basketball related?
Sam: I would tell my younger self to embrace failure, which provides an invaluable feedback loop for adjusting and recalibrating approach. In my opinion, anyone who crumbles at the first hint of adversity will ultimately face a lifetime of it.
LRT: How did you get on Klusman’s radar? What is the best way for aspiring recruits to be seen?
Sam: The Rollins coaches targeted me through the AAU circuit, at which point I visited Rollins and fell in love with everything the school had to offer. AAU is the perfect venue for aspiring recruits to be seen; playing on a good team provides opportunities to be seen in front of a wide array of coaches. For those who aren’t dead set on playing D1, there are plenty of potential landing spots outside of players’ traditional radars.
LRT: What is your pre-game ritual? Meals? Handshakes? Songs?
Sam: I would usually read before games; it helped mellow me out.
LRT: What is the worst injury you have had during your time as an athlete? What helped you overcome it?
Sam: In college, I didn’t miss a game until the final stretch of my senior season. I tore a calf muscle and missed a few games but was able to return to action in time for the conference tournament. I was only playing at 50% but figured I had nothing to lose by returning earlier than I otherwise would have.
Posted on August 28, 2018 in Interviews
When doing research in the recruiting process for my daughter I came across the LRT Sports website. I was immediately intrigued as this was another dimension of the recruiting process that many people don't even consider. My daughter and I could "short list" schools based on the education she was looking for, as well as the opportunity to play her sport. LRT Sports not only gave us pertinent information into the recruiting process with different interviews of coaches and players, it also gave us insight into current and/or former players' opinions on the coach of that school in her sport. We could use this information to re-prioritize my daughters list of schools based on this feedback. I have many friends that are, or will be, going through this process shortly and I highly recommend using LRT Sports as part of anyone's recruiting process.
The college process presents a myriad of challenges. Factor in athletics and it becomes even more daunting. Now, add the fact that you have zero experience with sports. What is a the mother of a college bound student-athlete to do? LRT Sports has truly lived up to its promise. It has kept "the college recruiting process honest and easy by providing first hand information about coaches, schools and the recruiting process." Their interviews with current students, coaches, and professional athletes have provided realistic guidance. I am much more informed because of LRT Sports! The coach ratings are the most helpful. LRT Sports interviews allow us to hear from students as to how the adults are impacting not only their athletic experience but also how they are helping to shape their adult self.
The C.A.L.C. was thrilled to have Keirsten Sires come and speak to us on multiple topics relevant to high school athletics today, including recruiting. Keirsten reached all of our students and left them with great strategies that will not only help on the fields, courts, and mats, but also in the game of recruiting. She was a true professional and delivered a wonderful message.
Now that the recruiting process and the related stress is over, I wanted to thank you for your guidance. You did so much more than we had expected. Once you started the process by matching the best academic schools first, not the best sport programs, I knew you were the one. The way you laid out a timeline of contacting coaches, visits, and camps completely took any guesswork out of the plan for us. All of the student athletes that you put us in touch with gave us a look from the inside, and made us more comfortable knowing what was coming. Finally, using your website as a resource for knowing what to expect from different coaches based on former recruit reviews gave my son confidence before our meetings. There is no way we could have figured this out on our own, you really put us in a great position when decision time came.
I think hearing from other athletes is very beneficial. To be able to learn from people’s mistakes, and to be able to have access to those voices is really helpful; especially voices that have been there and done that. It’s very important for people to have access to information that could benefit them, and in this case there are many voices that can help the next wave of athletes.
If you have something that’s going to spell [the recruiting process] out for you… it’s so valuable. I think what everyone at LRT Sports is doing to spread the word and help advocate and educate athletes on the recruitment process is incredible.
Without question would have used LRT Sports. It would have probably been one of the most valuable tools that I could have had. If you want to know what these coaches are really like then I think this is the best tool out there. I’m really glad you are allowing recruits to have a resource like this moving forward.