ED2 for Recruited Athletes?
My 2016 S recently narrowed his list of D3 LACs and is very close to "committing" and applying to his current favorite. For purposes of this discussion, let's call this college - School "A". Yesterday, however, his former number one and early favorite D3 school suddenly came calling (School "B"). The Head Coach from School "B" apologized and asked my 2016 if he still had interest because the coach is prepared to fully support S with Admissions. Both School "A" and "B" are highly selective, Top 10 ranked academic schools with comparable baseball programs.
S and I fully understand "what" took place and why the "sudden" interest; however, School "B" has certain intangibles (location, social life, etc.) that make it slightly more desirable. The difference is not significant. however. S prefers School "B" over School "A" despite the late interest but he has yet to visit School "B" in person. The lack of communication from the School "B" coaching staff for the past 3 weeks is what led to the school being crossed off the list.
S already visited School "A" (multiple times) and Admissions conducted a pre-read (with a favorable response). School "A" has a ED deadline of November 15 with no ED2. The Head Coach from School "A" believes S is unlikely to gain admission if he goes RD i.e., coach doesn't have much (if any) pull during RD. Therefore, as with most recruited athletes, the Head Coach is requesting that S apply ED.
School "B" must still conduct the pre-read and S must arrange for an overnight visit to get a better feel for the coaches, players, school environment, etc. I will not let him switch schools without first visiting and spending some quality time on campus. However, School "B" has a ED1 deadline of November 1 (less than week from now). The Head Coach for School "B" said "Don't worry about the November 1st deadline as your 2016 can apply ED2 in January."
Here's the dilemma...
S plans on visiting School "B" during the first week of November. S cannot, however, complete the visit and receive feedback on the pre-read from Admissions before the November 1st ED1 deadline. Assuming S falls in "love" with School "B" - as I anticipate - S is likely to select School "B" and apply in January via that school's ED2 process. This means S will not apply ED for School "A". That scares me. It is my understanding coaches have the most influence with Admissions during ED1 and not ED2. S could be throwing away a great opportunity at School "A" (via ED with full support by the Head Coach) for a slightly better opportunity at School "B" which is subject to that school's ED2 process (acceptance rate is generally lower).
Is this too risky? Does the Head Coach's ability to influence Admissions during ED2 vary by institution? What if the head coach at School "B" says he will fully support S's application during ED2? Does that change things?
Any advice this Board can provide is greatly appreciated.