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Pomona Stanford and Cal Athletic Recruiting

ToosaucyToosaucy Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
I recently visited these three schools and a lot more schools in California. These three turned out to be my favorite. Can anyone speak to athletic recruiting at these three schools specifically? I know that Pomona will be very different from the latter two because it's D3. Beyond the Pomona can't offer scholarships or things like that, can anyone explain how athletic recruits fare in admissions and what their stats would need to be like at any of these schools? I know these schools are very prestigious academic institutions and by no means am I trying to get in without being qualified. I just want to know: How big of a role athletic recruiting plays in admissions at each of these respective schools? Also, how does the recruiting process work at each of these respective schools? Do they have slots or anything like like that? SAT? GPA (does it really matter)? If it helps, the sport I'm interested in is women's lacrosse. Thanks!

Replies to: Pomona Stanford and Cal Athletic Recruiting

  • desertbeachkiddesertbeachkid Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    Cal, Stanford, and Pomona are nearly impossible to get into without a hook. For all three of those schools, being a recruited athlete is likely the difference between getting in and not getting in. The required test scores and grades will vary among the schools. If the coach is interested in you, he or she will tell you what grades and scores they are looking for. Also, your life as an athlete will be very different at a DIII school like Pomona and Cal/Stanford. You need decide how much time you want to spend playing your sport in college.
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 20,201 Senior Member
    Cal and Stanford are top 20 teams. An entirely different level of play than Pomona If your lacrosse skills are good enough for Cal/Stanford, and your grades are good enough, you'll be a sure thing at Pomona (but honestly, would you be happy playing at that level?). Pomona seems to host OOS teams or plays teams in the LA area. When you are on a team in a good weather setting, teams travel to you.

    The Cal and Stanford coaches probably have spots to get 8-10 players into the school if the player is tops athletically and has a good set of stats. Coaches can get a good student in through athletics, but you still need very high stats. We are talking women's lax, not football or basketball so they aren't going to bend the requirements much, because they don't have to. They won't have 8-10 scholarships since the team can only split 12 per year among the ~35 players on the team. The PAC12 teams play a home/away series, so you'd be traveling to Colo, Az State, USC, UCLA and either Cal/Stanford, plus 3-5 other trips, often across the country. It's a lot of travel. The competition to get one of those 8-10 spots will be tough.

    The coaches from the D1 schools can't talk to you about recruiting until Sept 1 of your junior year. The D3 coaches can, but usually they are on a later recruiting schedule.

  • ToosaucyToosaucy Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    I think I'd love to play D1, even though it requires a LOT of time, however, I'd be equally happy to play D3 as well. Lacrosse is one of those sports that can't be anyone's life, simply because you can't really make a living from it. So when I'm deciding between schools, I will definitely put the school first and the lacrosse program will be secondary. I'd be extremely grateful to get into any one of these respective schools. Let's say that hypothetically I was a top recruit, at which of the following schools do you think I'd be a shoe into?
  • ToosaucyToosaucy Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    To be completely honest, I loved all of these schools and I'd be happy to go to any one of them. Although I know Pomona's program is very different from Cal and Stanford, the lacrosse program itself isn't really something that I prioritize. I'm more worried about getting in because of how competitive these schools are. I think that I now understand how the processes at these schools work. So I guess it's going to really just come down to how much the coaches really want me
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 20,201 Senior Member
    Pomona may not offer admissions help to athletes. You have to ask the coach.
    Lacrosse is one of those sports that can't be anyone's life, simply because you can't really make a living from it.

    I know lots of people who do make a living from lax. The coaches at Cal and Stanford do. You'd have to prioritize lacrosse to be recruited, and they'll know if you aren't.
  • ToosaucyToosaucy Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    I should’ve specified because I meant a living in playing lacrosse. What I meant by the statement was that when it comes to choosing a school I’d like to attend, I’m not going to base the decision primarily on lacrosse becuase after college, it’s highly unlikely that I’ll make a living from lacrosse (a.k.a there’s no professional women’s lacrosse league that pays players a sufficient amount of money.) For example, if I was a top football recruit who had aspirations to make it to the nfl, I would to go to a school with a top football program to ensure that I’d the get recognition, instruction, and exposure necessary to make it to the NFL. I’d chose my school based mostly on its football program. I might even choose a school that a great football program, but not the best academics. In my case, for women’s lacrosse, it’s completely different. I can’t base life decisions on lacrosse because lacrosse isn’t going to support me after college. I have to base my decisions on what I want be when I grow up.

    I’m not saying I don’t prioritize lacrosse at all. I love the sport-why else would I play it? All I’m saying is that I have to think about life after college. So I want to attend a college that will prepare me for that, which is completely independent of lacrosse.
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 20,201 Senior Member
    Well, if you are a good enough player to get to choose your own school, then as long as you have high stats, the coaches can help you get into those top schools. Some D3 schools do not give the coaches any pull at all in admissions (MIT, CalTech) but otherwise you can expect top athletics to get you into top schools with the coach's pull.

    Staying in California really limits the help lacrosse can provide as far as scholarships or admissions help.
  • otispotisp Registered User Posts: 336 Member
    Pomona definitely can offer admissions help to athletes. Obviously, it depends on what a coach needs in a given year and whether you fill those particular needs (Pomona would love to avenge their conference finals loss to CMS). So yes, talk to/email the coach - the earlier, the better. While Pomona (and other D3s) don't offer athletic scholarships, Pomona (and many other "elite LACs") do meet "full financial need" (as determined by their FA office). My Pomona kid received more financial aid than many of her club teammates who received athletic money at D1s (as I'm sure you know, LAX & soccer are "equivalency sports" so partial scholarships tend to be the norm). Good luck!
  • desertbeachkiddesertbeachkid Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    Cast your net widely. Talk to all of these coaches and pursue other schools as well. You can't consider any options until you have them.
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 20,201 Senior Member
    What year are you?
  • LMC9902LMC9902 Registered User Posts: 240 Junior Member
    You didn't say anything about your lacrosse resume and didn't mention grad year but I'm going to assume you're a 2020 since the window will open soon for D1 recruiting. I know several girls who graduated this year and are headed to Stanford to play lacrosse in the fall. One is a high school teammate of my daughter's and she's an All American who plays for a top 20 ranked high school team and a great club team. Both girls I know were also top students at well known private schools in Maryland. These girls are your competition so if that sounds like you then I would highly encourage you to be connecting with coaches this summer ahead of Sept 1. With summer lacrosse in full swing right now, I would let the coaches know your schedule at tournaments and if they aren't going to the ones you attend they can look up film if you give them games to watch. Good luck.
  • CallieMomCallieMom Registered User Posts: 152 Junior Member
    Hey @Toosaucy , I will do my best to help.

    Preface: I assume you do not need any financial aid. Is that correct? That is an important consideration because if you live out of state, these schools are crazy expensive. CAL gives quite small athletic scholarships even if you live in state, Stanford does better, and as you know Pomona not at all. So if we can put finances aside, and your hope is that being a great lax player will offer you better chances to getting into on of these three schools then I can offer you a bit of my experience as a mom of an athlete.

    Pomona now does have slots. Pomona's athletic recruiting policies changed about 3 years ago. If you come from a top-tier boarding school, who has had an amazing season, Pomona might be a really good fit (my two cents and opinion). If you haven't been playing year-round, it might be more challenging to get into CAL and Stanford.

    Please know all these schools will all offer "pre-reads". This will address the heart of your concern. So, if the coaches are really interested in you and you are really interested in the schools, ask them if they can do a pre-read for you, and if so, when will that be. This is crucial. If you share your transcripts and your SAT (and possibly ACT) scores with the coaches, they will have them reviewed by admissions and let you know if your academics are strong enough. I don't know what the thresholds are for any of the schools anymore. Academically, Stanford and Pomona will have a higher bar than CAL. This is crucial information. That is part of the equation.

    After submitting your lax resume with you overall scores and GPA, etc. the coaches are able to determine pretty quickly if you will qualify academically. They probably have done this for many years and know what the thresholds are. We learned from a wonderful coach that there are actually multiple thresholds. If you are the top recruit there is a lower threshold than the second recruit, and so on. But, isn't lax one of those sports that offers commitments hella early? Throughout my daughter's process, the IVY league coaches could assess right away if she would qualify academically. Then, it became a matter of if they had a slot for her and/or if it was the school she really wanted to attend.

    The other major part is your talent. The coaches should be fairly transparent with you and let you know if you are one of the athletes they want to save a slot for.

    If you are gifted enough that all three want you and your grades/scores are high enough, you have what I consider "a good kind of problem" :-).

    My daughter ended up going to Pomona, BTW, participating in other sports. Almost every week she tells me how glad she was that she is playing DIII. In season, and preseason, athletics still have about a 3 hours per day commitment, but that is doable. She doesn't have to practice 3-5 hours a day year round. She doesn't have to miss days of classes for travel. The more dedicated focus on academics is much more suitable to her nervous system.

    There are lots of other posts on College Confidential about the recruiting process if you want to read others' experiences. I found the posts here very helpful in understanding and helping my child navigate the athletic recruiting process.

    Please feel free to reach out if you have any other questions.

    Best of luck and let us know how your process turns out!!!
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 20,201 Senior Member
    But don't forget that the D1 coaches can't discuss recruiting before Sept 1 of Junior year.
  • ToosaucyToosaucy Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    @CallieMom Thank you so much! That was incredibly helpful! I actually do come from a top boarding school with a great lacrosse program; so, that should be helpful! What's really hard about the process is that as far as D1 goes, I won't really know anything until September 1st due to the new rules. (I'm class of 2020) I know the rule was put in place for very good reasons, but it's still hard sitting here not really knowing anything about whether coaches are interested or not. So I guess we'll see about D1 schools on Sep 1st! Do you have any light to shed on what September 1st is usually like? For instance, do coaches call, send emails? (I know it's different this year because my class is the first class that's really affected by the new rule, but any experience stories or anything like that would be helpful! Again, thank you!
  • ToosaucyToosaucy Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    @twoinanddone I've heard that about MIT before and I was wondering is it true that their coaches don't have any pull in admissions (i.e slots, letter of rec from the coach to accompany application, etc)? I'm just wondering out of curiosity.
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