Question- What would you rather?

pricey_aus

Semi-Pro
Okay, heres my dilemma. I am looking into two schools and am wondering if you were in my shoes, what you would do. I'm not looking for answers of "choose what's best for you", I just want some advice, some different opinions, some different perspectives.

So, of the 2 schools.

1 is in a small city, a college town. It has a population of around 120,000. It has one of the premiere athletic environments in America. It also has lucrative sponsors, which means you get alot for cheap. Tennis is fairly good, however they are in a strong conference which means they struggle to win...therefore are struggling to climb the rankings. The weather (which is quite important to me) is mild, with many rainy days. It is also a public school.

School 2 is in a extremely large city, with a population of over 4 million (i think). It is a pretty small private university, and although it does not have the sponsors that school 1 has, it is still quite alright at tennis. It is in a weaker conference which means less tough matches but you would be winning alot more...therefore ranking could rise. The weather is fantastic.

If you were in my position, which way would you go?

I really have no idea, and am looking for any perspectives, advice, anything!
 

tennisjon

Professional
I think there are more considerations to take into account besides location and strength of schedule. You should also take into consideration the academic match of the school to you, the costs to go to the school (after scholarships and financial aid), and what type of campus life you would like to have.

As for the tennis part, what are your chances of starting for 4 years (non-starters in many schools get little attention and therefore don't improve)? What are you looking to get out of the tennis program (some schools have good schedules so you get good matches, but maybe the coach doesn't do a good job in helping you improve as a player)? Do you fit in with the kids on the team (these guys will become your friends and the people you will spend a lot of time with for the next few years)? How much attention will you receive academically, athletically, and socially (from your coaches, tutors, other students)?

Personally, for myself, if all things are equal I would rather be in a college town than in a big city.
 

NickC

Professional
Yeah, before you decide anything based off what you told us, take a good hard look at the academics and what you'll want to pursue in terms of majors and stuff. It is a school first and foremost, don't forget that.
 

EP1998

Semi-Pro
How are the other sports at school #1? I think I might know which one it is, lol. Good facilities mean a lot in terms of physios and things like that which can be important when you start playing on hard courts everyday. That is assuming they let the tennis team get near the stuff (not always the case!)

Are you the one that wants to go on the circuit? If so, you need to look at the coach, is it someone who can help you improve and will you play tough competition so you can improve. You also have to be careful if you are the top player because you can get played into the ground and be really sick of tennis and/or injured by the time you graduate. If you find that you are sick of tennis by May take the summers off. In the long run it is worth it. Dont make the mistake of feeling like you have play all summer and go off to Germany or something. You will burn out.

PS: good luck, you are going LOVE college in America!

Repost this in your UCSB thread too, I think your questions will get more responses there just because more people were reading that thread
 
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polski

Semi-Pro
Read through your UCSB thread & the schools you have expressed interest in. Here's my thoughts, taking all tennis out of the equation:

1) Vanderbilt
2) Northwestern
3) Loyola

No matter what you plan to study, these three offer top notch academics in nearly every major. Having any of these schools on your resume will make it easy to find work after college.

Oh yeah, Oregon...nice facilities there. Phil Knight & Nike hook it up with everything. It's just a notch below these three academically... but it is still a big name institution.
 

Kick_It

Semi-Pro
What are your tennis goals and academic goals?

One unique advantage you will get out of college is all the people you meet and connections you make. I'd think of that when evaluating the different schools and the opportunities they will present you both academically and athletically.

Even though I know you're a pretty talented tennis player - I'd encourage you to look towards academics as a solid backup plan in the event of a bad injury, etc.

Tennis wise, I'd talk to former players, particularly former foreign players at both schools.

After talking to some of my buddies in the over 35s division at least 15 years after college - I'd say a couple of the guys I now play against went to smaller schools and got lots of playing time and developed their tennis game more than they would have at a larger school. In comparison I went to a larger school and developed my game a good bit - but I probably would have developed more of my tennis game at a smaller school.

Tennis wise - I wanted to find out where I sat in the world order - how did I stack up against the best? Tennis wise - that is a key reason why I chose the school I did in a top conference. (I didn't know I would develop more at a smaller school).

Tennis wasn't the only reason I chose that school... It had a good program for my desired major with reasonable out of state tuition, and a decent environment I liked, and I had a chance to walk onto the tennis team. That combination is why I chose what I chose.

I completely agree about prior advice to choose based upon your connection with team mates and coaching fit; you're going to spend lots of time with them and they will be the ones helping you grow your game.

Ask your mate @ school #1 where he thinks you'd fit and play vs other guys on the team for the next two years. If you're top 4 material over the first couple years - I'd be tempted to go there. Otherwise I'd be tempted to choose the smaller school.

I think all the schools you are looking at are good schools - the question I have is what matters most to you - and how does that line up with which of those schools are good at them?

Good Luck! K_I
 

cmutennis10

New User
If you are still looking at Vanderbilt, I know a lot about their program as I have a couple very good friends who play there and I have visited.

I'd prefer to do it by e-mail so if you post your e-mail, I can give you a lot about the school and the team.
 

BullDogTennis

Hall of Fame
if your interested in vandy, its a great school, located in the smack dab middle of nashville, a great city, where you won't get bored....just get use to country music!
 

Kick_It

Semi-Pro
I also love Vandy as an option for you, as I think I stated in an earlier thread. It wasn't clear to me from this thread if that was still an option (1 or 2).
 

pricey_aus

Semi-Pro
Vandy isn't an option anymore...we just couldn't afford it financially.

The two schools I am looking at are Oregon and Loyola..if that helps.
 

polski

Semi-Pro
Got it...was confused by the 4 million clue you gave. I guess that L.A. has about 4 million folks in the city limits, but the metro area is well larger than that (16 million?).

If I had a chance to go to school in L.A., play college tennis, and have my education paid for at a very good instution (54k/year) - SOLD! Have you seen Baywatch?:)

Oregon wouldn't be a bad move either, but Loyola is more impressive to me for future job prospects. Plus, the coach is an Aussie...that should help with the transition to a new country for you.
 

Kick_It

Semi-Pro
Do you want to be a big fish in a small pond or do you want to be a small fish in a big pond?

I understand the desire to be a big fish in a big pond. I'd ask you how you'd deal with the possibility if you aren't a big fish in the big pond and factor that into your choice.

If you're equally split between the two you might consider initially starting out at the small school and see how it goes for a year or two and based upon how it goes either stay there or consider transferring to a bigger school down the road.

Even if you dominate/own tennis at Loyola - at least in LA - there are lots of tough tennis players nearby to push yourself against in local tournaments and futures located nearby. In Eugene - not so much; you'd be practicing with the best within an hour's drive.

K_I
 

polski

Semi-Pro
Kick It - I disagree with your advice. I think that it teaches kids nothing about the TEAM concept, if they go to a school with transferring in the back of their mind.

Transferring happens and there are good reasons for it (playing time, coaching change, etc). Don't go to a school thinking, "maybe I'll go somewhere bigger if I can get really good from this coach." That is not making a commitment to a school. It can implode an entire college team.

pricey - Pick a school that you want to attend for 4 years. Be a stand up person, not a flip flopper who will transfer any time you think you're too big time.
 

atatu

Legend
School 2 would be my choice. Even though I went to a big public university, I think that a small private school is a better choice and that is where I will steer my kids. That fact that the weather is fantastic is a bonus.
 

EP1998

Semi-Pro
Both schools have good points. I vote for Oregon. Coming from Oz and from a large city there I think that kind of school would be fun for you. Facilities are amazing. From an academics standpoint I dont think you need a small school. Year 12 in Victoria and passing VCE is basically like the first year of an American public college. You might even be able to test out of some classes. That said, LA is the best city in the world! I dont know anything about either of the coaches though.
 
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Oregon get's beat up pretty bad in the PAC...but it's a great school in a fun college location. As a Southern Cal guy who loves the sun...go to Oregon...you'll be playing great competition, get a ton of cool Nike gear and enjoy 4 years of Pac-10 football and basketball. Loyola just can't compete with a Pac-10 school...
 

AutoXer

Rookie
The conference can't change for 2 years, but once all the dust has cleared, you may be in an expanded league with east\west divisions. Could be an interesting situation to go through and new schools to play against.
 

athiker

Hall of Fame
Okay, heres my dilemma.

1 is in a small city, a college town. The weather (which is quite important to me) is mild, with many rainy days. It is also a public school.

School 2 is in a extremely large city, with a population of over 4 million (i think). The weather is fantastic.

If you were in my position, which way would you go?

I really have no idea, and am looking for any perspectives, advice, anything!
Not to oversimplify, but...

I can't weigh all the factors you no doubt can having considered both these schools in depth but having moved from a pretty poor weather location (upper Mid west) to a much milder (better) weather location 4 years ago for me its not even close. Forgetting the warmer temps for a moment I could not go back to day after day of grey days. It affects my mood too much. The NW is beautiful and wonderful to visit (I hope to take my family on a major backpacking trip there some day) but I could never live there.

You are from Australia, yes? Isn't it pretty sunny there for the most part?...or am I oversimplifying based on too many movies? Maybe you come from a rainy grey area of Australia? If the weather change is dramatic for you then don't underestimate its effect. Not blasting the NW of the U.S., tons of attractive things about the region, I just know for me, I couldn't do it.
 
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