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-   -   Can the talk of talk of top d3 schools being better than unranked d1 schools end? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=454324)

swanpm20 02-10-2013 08:32 AM

Can the talk of talk of top d3 schools being better than unranked d1 schools end?
 
http://www.itatennis.com/AwardsAndRa...stResults.html



I've read numerous posts on this board ragging on smaller d1 schools, encouraging kids to look at top d3 schools instead, talking about how bad these d1 schools are, etc...

Kenyon is ranked #2 in d3 tennis. They finished runner up in last year's National Championship, losing a tight match 5-3 to Emory. They got thrashed today by UW-Green Bay, unranked d1 team, 7-0. Not even a competitive singles match in there.

I may have a chip on my shoulder here since I've seen posts specifically targeting my alma mater (Green Bay), saying they are a garbage program and people would be better off going to UW-Whitewater. (just search posts by the poster "dusso"). So to clarify where this is coming from, that's your answer.

Anyway, let's stop those posts right now that say how much greater the top d3 programs are than smaller d1's....

d1 tennis is where it's at.

swanpm20 02-10-2013 08:33 AM

http://www.itatennis.com/AwardsAndRa...estResults.htm

swanpm20 02-10-2013 08:40 AM

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=362339


This, by the way, was the thread I'm talking about. Just look a few posts down at the post by "duuso".

andfor 02-10-2013 10:27 AM

In defense of your school I hear you and good to see they won handily.

But there are some very weak D1 teams with little or no scholarship money that struggle against any team they play year in and year out.

That's the great thing about college tennis. I've said it before and will say it again. For those H.S. tennis players willing to look with an open mind, there's a place to play college tennis for any level player. College and college tennis is what the individual makes of it.

ClarkC 02-10-2013 01:15 PM

There are a couple hundred men's programs, and only 75 get ranked. The #76 DI program will whip any DIII program, and so will the #100 DI program. However, the #180 DI program, which offers no scholarship money and signs 1-star and 2-star recruits, will certainly not beat Emory, Kenyon, etc.

I don't know about every past discussion, but there have certainly been discussions in which junior players were advised that going to the #180 DI program, with no scholarship money available, is some kind of ego trip just so the player (and sometimes his parents) can say that he played DI tennis. The same player will turn up his nose at a mere DIII program, because it is not basking in the glory of being DI. I think those discussions were pretty fair.

drfrankfree 02-11-2013 06:46 AM

I think this is a great discussion to have! Swanpm definitely has a chip on his shoulder and some of it is deservedly so. However, saying that the UWGB over Kenyon legitimizes the D1 teams as better that D3 is a tremendous leap and playing loose with some facts.
First, UWGB is like many "lesser" D1 teams who finally got tired of getting snubbed by American kids and went the European route. 70% of their current roster is foreign. I don't blame them for doing so. Coaches are paid to win. Many talented kids in Germany, Austria, and Poland would love the chance to come to the US and get an education regardless of facilities, tradition, or academic prestige of the university. American kids have a much different scale when looking at schools.
As far as "D1 being where its at", I would say that is a stretch when referring to a school like UWGB. The kids at Kenyon lead a lifestyle much more akin to a D1 program in terms of travel, facilities. equipment, budget, and the overall experience. At UWGB, the facilities are indisputably terrible. There is no home match experience as they play at a public racket club off campus. At UWGB, there is a huge commuter population, around 70% of the student body so the traditional college experience is not there. The coach at UWGB, unless things have changed, is a part time guy who teaches at the club the team plays at. Contrast this to Kenyon, who travels first class everywhere they go, have amazing campus facilities that easily exceed 90% of D1 schools, and a full time coach. Top level D3 schools travel around the country to play matches. Even UW-Whitewater does this. UWW has far better facilities than Green Bay and a dedicated full time coach.
I wouldn't say Kenyon is a true #2 right now in D3. That is based primarily on last years surprise run to the finals. They are probably a solid 5 or 6. CMS, Amherst, and Midd all stack up better that Kenyon. CMS would easily handle most division 1 teams not in a BCS conference. As a matter of fact, my bet is they would win several of the D1 conference championships if they played for them. They have 3 five stars in their starting lineup. How many non-BCS D1 teams even have 1? Emory has routinely beaten teams from D1 conferences (Big East, SoCon). In the fall tourneys, you can see how well the top D3 players fair against D1 guys. It's pretty impressive.
In closing, you should be proud of your team. They have a solid group of guys and may contend for the Horizon league. However, it's a blanket statement in error to remark that "D1 is where its at". That is simply not true. I dont think a great majority of 4* kids would rather spend their college years playing on rented courts with a part time coach in the middle of nowhere over Amherst, CMS, Emory, or Middlebury just because they are D1.

swanpm20 02-11-2013 06:57 PM

Thank you for that insightful post drfrank, as well as Clark and andfor. Yes, the post I made yesterday was definitely in a moment where I was in a mood that gave me a chip on my shoulder...you see, for the second consecutive year we had a highly ranked d3 school not give what I felt was their best effort against us (last year was Chicago, who was around #10 at the time, who I am aware ended around #30).

Drfrank, let's continue this discussion. I see from your post history that your son attends an upper d3 school, and that may make your biased. I am clearly biased as well given that I could not be happier with the choice I made to go to UW-Green Bay in terms of college tennis, and feel that I had just about the best college tennis experience possible. (Well, I imagine Steve Johnson and Daniel Nguyen probably had a good time winning those 4 national titles.... but, it's all relative!)

Let's try to put our biases aside and talk about the positives and negatives of both sides. Here, in my mind, are the huge positives of playing for an upper level d3:

1. Compete for a national championship.
2. National recognition.
3. Better academic name.
4. Compete for individual titles as well (depending on how good you are).

Now let's say, for comparison's sake, someone who is a mid-level 4 star. They have a few different options. They can excel at one of these d3 schools, compete for national titles, and the other positives I mentioned above.

Another option they have is to play for "StateU" as you mentioned in your post on another thread. This is a fair point; a lot of players at this level are risking riding the bench all 4 years if they go to one of the big conference schools.

Being fresh off my college tennis experience, I can say that it goes by WAY too quickly, and if you had to sit on the bench even one year, that would seem like you're missing out on so much.

So here are some reasons why I think that same level 4 star player should look at a mid major like UW-Green Bay, for example.

1. Chance to get nationally ranked in d1. As a team, this is the goal this year, and it would be first time in school history. In individuals, I would not be surprised if Michael Tenzer pulled it off in tomorrow's rankings for the first time in school history.

2. Chance to compete against the best of the best in college tennis. You don't get to play ITA regionals against Ohio State's best players if you play at a d3 school. This gives you such a great opportunity to maximize your tennis abilities as well.

3. Play for your conference championship. This isn't quite as big as playing for the d3 national title since there is obviously less recognition, but it's still something you shoot for all year round. Lots of midmajor teams treat their conference championships as the Super Bowl (we sure do.)

And last, but certainly not least.....


4. Financially, it is such a sound decision. When upper d3 schools can cost upwards of $50k per year for tuition alone, this can pack a kid with so much debt that they better make a TON of money someday if they ever want to pay it off. Because of the scholarship I got to attend Green Bay, I am graduating in May with absolutely no debt, and my Business degree gives me the opportunity to do anything I want to do in the business world, as long as I perform well enough at my job. I think a lot of kids don't realize this at age 18, but I know at 22 I am incredibly thankful I made the decision I made. I know that I wanted to go Big Ten, but my parents leaned me much more toward Green Bay knowing what a great decision it would be for my future off the court. After having such an amazing experience on the court that culminated in the team's first ever NCAA experience, it is absolutely something I'd recommend to anyone.

Midmajor d1 schools do not get the respect they deserve on this board, imo...and that is why I am here. There is a lot to be said for getting an undergrad degree with no debt.

Clemson_tennis 02-11-2013 07:06 PM

Great thread. I agree that mid level unranked D1 schools do not get enough respect usually because they lose more than win but that dosen't mean they are bad players.

Another result over the weekend. Texas San Antonio easily beat a top 15 D2 team.

andfor 02-11-2013 07:10 PM

I'm a huge fan of mid-major D1. Even a bigger fan of American kids like you who choose to go there for all the reasons you just mentioned. You have a great attitude and outlook. I hope my kid can have a similar college tennis experience and more importantly come away with a degree he can use and and outlook like you.

Work hard and maintain your positive view. You'll go far.

Thanks for sharing.

swanpm20 02-11-2013 07:15 PM

You bet andfor, I appreciate that. What level is your kid at?

swanpm20 02-11-2013 07:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Clemson_tennis (Post 7208059)
Great thread. I agree that mid level unranked D1 schools do not get enough respect usually because they lose more than win but that dosen't mean they are bad players.

Another result over the weekend. Texas San Antonio easily beat a top 15 D2 team.

Good call, I noticed that one as well. They might be a bit like us in a way in that they're an after thought since they're in the same state as Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, TCU, etc.

It is true that a lot of mid level teams lose more than they win, and a lot of this is due simply to how the coach schedules things. I think this contributes in a large part to a college tennis experience as well. Quite simply, it is not very fun to lose a lot, and it is a lot of fun to win a lot. W-L record is rather underrated imo, not necessarily for determining team strength, because the ITA rankings do a great job of that, but rather for overall college tennis experience of those on the team.

drfrankfree 02-12-2013 06:56 AM

swap, I can see your points. There is definitely a market for the mid major teams. My biggest point of contention with your post was saying, in a blanket statement, that "D1 was where its at". I suppose both our our arguments could be supported based on what a particular player is looking for. Case in point, my son has a friend on that UT-San Antonio team you previously mentioned and he could not be happier. He was a solid 3* kid who probably was looking at upper level D3 and decided to go mid major D1. It's worked out well for him. However, I can show you plenty of other kids who ended up at mid major directionals just for the "D1 experience". These kids almost always bail after a year or two because a lot of the time these programs have terrible facilities, poor coaching, and lackluster school and student support. I realize it doesn't always happen but a quick glance through the history of OVC, Horizon, and Southland rosters will prove me right. On the other hand, many of these same kids dismiss D3 schools where they could receive a phenomenal education, play in excellent facilities, receive great coaching, and enjoy full administration support. From a talent standpoint, many of the best D3 kids turned down big D1 offers. Many others, turned down mid major and D2 offers. In the end, it just depends on the individual player and their wants. My son, chose to go D3 primarily because of the things you mentioned. A chance to play for a nat'l title, individual awards, etc... I will admit, I was a bit skeptical in the beginning. It took some on campus visits to sway me. However, when you compare the teams and facilities of a mid-major D1 school, say the 6th place team in the OVC, with a Kenyon, Hopkins, Mary Wash, or Trinity Tx, its not even close. Hopkins or Trinity Tx would absolutely destroy Eastern or Western Illinois, Loyola, MD, La Salle, St Josephs, and lots of other D1 mid majors. In the end, it just comes down to the individual, I just think its a big problem that some of our top talent is brainwashed into the "D1 or nothing" mindset.

10isDad 02-13-2013 07:53 AM

A couple examples of D-II schools upending D-I schools. 2 years ago, Grand Canyon University was #20 D-II team and they beat Northern Arizona 5-2 (All matches were completed and final score was 6-3). Last season GCU played Cal Poly, which was ranked around #50 and GCU lost 5-1 (7-2) Most of the matches were very competitive, but Cal Poly was definitely the better team.

Additionally, 2 years ago Hawaii Pacific (a top 10 D-II school) walloped Air Force.

The #1 D-II team in the country (Armstrong Athletic) often plays and badly beats some D-I teams. If fact, I'd love to see the results between AA and perhaps a D-I school ranked around #30.

As for UTSA "easily" beating a top D-II team, the singles were all straight set wins, however there were several close sets and UTSA did lose the doubles point. Perhaps "easily" is a bit of an exaggeration.

Clemson_tennis 02-13-2013 08:33 AM

The very top D2 teams can play. Armstrong Atlantic would be a top 25 D1 team. There players routinely beat UGA players by lopsided margins in the fall. But D2 isn;t deep at all. Get past #5 and there is a large drop off. While in D1 there are 90-110 quality teams.

andfor 02-13-2013 09:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Clemson_tennis (Post 7211491)
The very top D2 teams can play. Armstrong Atlantic would be a top 25 D1 team. There players routinely beat UGA players by lopsided margins in the fall. But D2 isn;t deep at all. Get past #5 and there is a large drop off. While in D1 there are 90-110 quality teams.

I agree but to a point. Without seeing AA play a ranked team its a little hard to tell. They don't appear to have 1 D1 team scheulded this spring. Maybe no ranked teams wants to play them. And maybe their coach does not want to risk a loss. Their top 3 are very good and yes your right they did score some wins over UGA players in the fall. I believe a top 25 D1 team would expose them with depth.

bluetrain4 02-13-2013 10:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ClarkC (Post 7204730)
There are a couple hundred men's programs, and only 75 get ranked. The #76 DI program will whip any DIII program, and so will the #100 DI program. However, the #180 DI program, which offers no scholarship money and signs 1-star and 2-star recruits, will certainly not beat Emory, Kenyon, etc.

I don't know about every past discussion, but there have certainly been discussions in which junior players were advised that going to the #180 DI program, with no scholarship money available, is some kind of ego trip just so the player (and sometimes his parents) can say that he played DI tennis. The same player will turn up his nose at a mere DIII program, because it is not basking in the glory of being DI. I think those discussions were pretty fair.

I was going to say something like this. The Top of DIII has very good players, a high level of play. But, the overlap with DI is not THAT big. As has been said, Top 100 D1 teams aren't going to lose to any DIII team, including the national champion. But, as you go down the list and get into the 150 and 200 range for DI, matches could start to be competitive with the very top DIII teams, and eventually there would be weak DI teams that the top DIII teams would beat. Not many, but they do exist.

Why is the OP offended?

Coach Carter 02-13-2013 10:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ClarkC (Post 7204730)
There are a couple hundred men's programs, and only 75 get ranked. The #76 DI program will whip any DIII program, and so will the #100 DI program. However, the #180 DI program, which offers no scholarship money and signs 1-star and 2-star recruits, will certainly not beat Emory, Kenyon, etc.

I don't know about every past discussion, but there have certainly been discussions in which junior players were advised that going to the #180 DI program, with no scholarship money available, is some kind of ego trip just so the player (and sometimes his parents) can say that he played DI tennis. The same player will turn up his nose at a mere DIII program, because it is not basking in the glory of being DI. I think those discussions were pretty fair.

I would totally agree with this statement. After a decade of recruiting - it was a sad thing to see families with a illusion that their kiddo was going to play big time D-1 tennis when they needed to be doing what I'd suggest for anyone...if you love tennis and want the opportunity to continue your playing career into college, then look for a team that matches your goals. That will take some work on your part, but the internet is there and all you have to do is search and start making contacts. Look at rosters, look back at those players jr results, look at team schedules to see where they travel to and what they do, contact a higher up team player thru a site (you could contact a player) and inquire about team atmosphere...you can educate yourself pretty well...and maybe have some friends before you get there!!! Put yourself in a spot that makes actual sense financially, academically, and athletically for you. If it's important in any of those departments, then don't make a selection that will have you falling short in one of those sections.

Coach Carter 02-13-2013 11:19 AM

swanpm20 -- I appreciate that last long post you had. You have some good things to say. The thing that still needs to be mentioned that I think many young players (and their parents) miss out on...you were obviously quite a talented player to have received that scholarship offer to that mid-major. Many of the jr players that you also deal with in recruiting are uneducated on the process still (less than before)...they believe they are going to get this phantom last minute scholarship offer call from the coach from Texas, Georgia, USC or fill in the blank. They want to believe that they are the player that will GO BIG. swan you had something to your game and your academic background that allowed a coach/school to invest in you. I agree with some of Dr. Frank's thoughts and just want to add...it all depends on the school and more, the coach at the school. If the program is important and is being "invested in" by the coach and school then it'll be worth being a part of. A fun but serious tennis environment, with a smart schedule that allows for success quickly is definitely important...it cultivates an attitude of winning...breeds more winning and draws more winners to your program...the tennis circle of life!

swanpm20 02-13-2013 04:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bluetrain4 (Post 7211803)
I was going to say something like this. The Top of DIII has very good players, a high level of play. But, the overlap with DI is not THAT big. As has been said, Top 100 D1 teams aren't going to lose to any DIII team, including the national champion. But, as you go down the list and get into the 150 and 200 range for DI, matches could start to be competitive with the very top DIII teams, and eventually there would be weak DI teams that the top DIII teams would beat. Not many, but they do exist.

Why is the OP offended?


Check out one of my latter two posts where I posted a link to the thread inquiring about UW-La Crosse tennis. UW Green Bay tennis, where I played, is specifically attacked in there multiple times. That's where the chip on my shoulder comes from.

swanpm20 02-13-2013 04:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Coach Carter (Post 7212012)
swanpm20 -- I appreciate that last long post you had. You have some good things to say. The thing that still needs to be mentioned that I think many young players (and their parents) miss out on...you were obviously quite a talented player to have received that scholarship offer to that mid-major. Many of the jr players that you also deal with in recruiting are uneducated on the process still (less than before)...they believe they are going to get this phantom last minute scholarship offer call from the coach from Texas, Georgia, USC or fill in the blank. They want to believe that they are the player that will GO BIG. swan you had something to your game and your academic background that allowed a coach/school to invest in you. I agree with some of Dr. Frank's thoughts and just want to add...it all depends on the school and more, the coach at the school. If the program is important and is being "invested in" by the coach and school then it'll be worth being a part of. A fun but serious tennis environment, with a smart schedule that allows for success quickly is definitely important...it cultivates an attitude of winning...breeds more winning and draws more winners to your program...the tennis circle of life!



You hit the nail on the head Coach Carter (great movie by the way) when you say that the problem is that so many kids think they can play for the big program. Lack of education and lack of realistic thinking while in high school is a big thing that causes a lot of kids to have negative college tennis experiences.


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