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Men's rowing questions, sophomore in HS

nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
edited September 2013 in Athletic Recruits
My son is quite interested in rowing in college. Just wondering how competitive it is.

He LOVES the sport. Started a year ago and will row four years in hs. Really gets into the mechanics and is intuitive in this sport. Young (May) age 16. Incredibly fit. 6'. (Seems like one needs to be 6'2"+?). 155 lbs. I don't know how tall he might be. Probably is still growing? 6:38 on 2k erg. Thinks he can get to 6:30.

He is dyslexic, and an average student. 3.0 this year. Yes, I'm his mom, but a really sharp, committed kid. Eagle Scout. He tends to be obsessive about his sport. Really focused.

Saw another post about ID camps. Is his height going to keep him out unless he hits 6'2"?

Any advice? Thx!
Post edited by nettiK4137 on

Replies to: Men's rowing questions, sophomore in HS

  • nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
    Sweeps, but taking singles lessons.
  • imafanimafan Registered User Posts: 252 Junior Member
    Make sure you son does a JRNT ID camp. Check out usrowingjrs.org for dates.

    Yes, only the fastest rowers will make the camp, but you will get a good idea of where he stands athletically, and coaches around the country follow those rowers.
  • nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
    imafan, I looked that up but he could only go if he was 6'2". Is that right? Don't know if he will get there, maybe 6'1". Does that mean his chances are nil? Seems odd! He is lanky, all arms and legs, but not 6'2".
  • imafanimafan Registered User Posts: 252 Junior Member
    netti, the ID camp tryouts are open to all athletes. Dates and registration all happen via usrowing. cost is $50. Best investment to give you perspective as to where your rower is athletically. If you're hearing about an optimal height, that's all it is...optimal.
  • classicalmamaclassicalmama Registered User Posts: 2,261 Senior Member
    Right. Those heights and times you're seeing are what's typical for kids selected to attend one of the summer camps (development, high performance, or selection). The ID camps are open to everyone. At the camp, you son will do an erg test, then spend time on the water. It's great experience.
  • carolinabcarolinab Registered User Posts: 63 Junior Member
    Hi Netti. As far as how competitive it is, there are many opportunities to row at the college level. We found the "Sparks college rowing database" to be a great resource. The database will give you a list of D1, 2 and 3 schools, as well as club teams. Some kids will get recruited, others can try out after they are admitted- "walk on." There does seem to be variations in height at the college level. Some of the best d1 heavyweight programs have really tall guys (>6' 4"), but some don't. For the lightweight category, many boys seem to be around 5'11- 6'2. The US Naval Academy recruits rowers and I hear they love Eagle Scouts! Good luck to your son.
  • carolinabcarolinab Registered User Posts: 63 Junior Member
    I also should add that as a 6' , 155lb Sophomore, your son has a very impressive 6:38 2k!
  • nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
    imafan, just checked it out, the 2014 camps (Jan - March) are not up yet, but I saw the 2013 schedule and we will definitely do one of those. Thanks!

    cmama, he would LOVE that!! I don't know what his growth will present, but don't expect more than 6'2" at best. all arms and legs though. and soul!!

    Carolinab, he did a navy camp this summer and that is what made him want to pursue finding a place for him to row in college. LOVED the commitment to rowing he saw from other campers, and 'talk' in the northeast. And the great boathouse. And thanks! I saw him in a competition get this score, he felt he 'could a' done better, but he did put his all into it. As a mom, you worry about blowing his guts out!! Geez! Looked painful!! :) And I will keep pllugged into the Sparks site. He took the summer pretty lightly, so don't know where he is now, but seems the id camps are all in first quarter of the year.

    Thanks ALL!!! you are a wealth of knowledge!!
  • classicalmamaclassicalmama Registered User Posts: 2,261 Senior Member
    Boys' bodies tend to change a lot in the late teens, so my guess is that your son will put on both height and weight and that his erg times will improve accordingly. A 6:38 is a very good first year erg score (he's a rising 10th grader, correct?), and he will almost certainly improve as he gets bigger and hones his technique. My kid has been to camp with lots of kid who were great rowers but without the academics to get into Ivies, and they're still getting lots of recruiting calls from great schools. Getting into the U.S. Rowing pipeline is a huge help, but there are lots of other elite camps where he can get good experience too. If he doesn't get invited to a national camp next summer, check out the junior teams that are medalling at club nationals as possibilities for next summer's camp--another good way to get the attention of college coaches, along, of course, with emailing starting his junior year.
  • imafanimafan Registered User Posts: 252 Junior Member
    Cmama makes a great point - your summer/fall team matters. A lot. While attending a summer camp at a college is nice, that may be all it is: nice. The number of college coaches that attend the summer regattas is astounding. And, once you join a summer team that is fairly competitive, you can let the coaches know where and when they can see you row. Constant contact during that time period is crucial - emailing which race and which seat # you're in, etc.
  • nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
    Thanks for the great tips. Something hard to figure out on your own!!

    He just yesterday (as a sophomore, classical mama) was placed on stroke seat in the first varsity boat! a captain telling him he has real potential!) so is doubly fired up about the season!! I keep telling him to focus on grades, too, that THAT will matter to these coaches too. CM, glad to hear your sons experience that these kids are getting calls. We will work the camps, and getting into the US rowing pipeline, as you say. What grade is your son? Any other camps you might recommend, outside of these invitationals? I gather the ID process is first quarter of the year for the following summer? I hope he does get to grow in height, I know he sees that as his major issue with much recruitment.

    imafan, I know his team last year (where he was a novice and won state in his 4 and 8 boat, third in regionals) took their varsity select players to nationals in the summer (Philadelphia?), but, being novice I guess, he did not go.

    Yesterday he said he is working on being starboard or port, as he knows that flexibility is important, altho most kids are complaining about being switched, he realizes coaches are doing him a favor by working both sides. He seems really coachable and surely coaches recognize that. Last summer he took his first private singles lesson, the coach preparing him beforehand that he would work with him on land, then if all goes well, put him in the water and see if he can string some strokes together. DS said at the end of the lesson he was rowing across the lake! Coach (who doesn't give compliments!) said he did well. Lesson two, he and coach were in two boats parallel, and coach would pull ahead to get DS to 'keep up', and DS would take the bait and race. I am saying this (as everyone likes to brag on their kid!) to say too, that he is a natural!! (wish he would be so intuitive academically!) :)

    Oh, the joys of parenthood!!!
  • SakartveloSakartvelo Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    His 2k is quite remarkable for his position, as a sophomore a 6:38 2k is almost unheard of. I'm not sure what type of school he wants to go to, HOWEVER, most division 1 college crew (Ivy Leagues, Most top 30 schools) programs require strong academics in conjunction with a strong 2k. So he would need to get his GPA up to at least around a 3.6 to be considered for one of these schools. If he wants to go to a less competitive school, some still have Division 1 programs, but they just aren't as good as the more competitive schools, and it limits his horizon.
  • classicalmamaclassicalmama Registered User Posts: 2,261 Senior Member
    What Sakartvelo says about the most competitive schools having the best rowing programs is mostly true--but not completely (the University of Washington is a shining exception, for example). I'd be hesitant to advise a dyslexic, average student into a super competitive academic environment.
  • mhmmmhmm Registered User Posts: 1,192 Senior Member
    I would be as hesitant as classicalmama to advise such a kid into a super competitive academic environment, but from what I have seen of my son's team - the academic support can be astounding at an Ivy. Its almost "football-like" in its all around support. I would, however, look at Trinity college. Great rowing program and the academics are good all around, but not cut-throat competitive.
  • nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
    mhmm, yes, I cringe thinking of that competitive academicc environment for him. I will look at Trinity College, great rowing program is awesome!! I am familiar with heroics done for the football set, but not aware of any other sport being offered that courtesy...and not so sure I want it anyway...life isnt that way...or is it?? :)

    Classicalmama, I will add this one, UW to my list. thanks.

    sakartvelo, at this point, I don't know enough about D1 vs 2, 3 to know how to state a preference. As he won't 'row' for a living, I hesitate to care!! I think he just wants to compete. He will have to fess up to a profession one day. Engineering, mechanical, seems his leaning, so I am making sure the math is solidly attacked. Thanks!

    Thanks all! great advise!!
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