Another Varsity Letter question

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by merica, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. merica

    merica New Member

    Dec 2, 2013
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    My son, a sophomore, has been on his school crew team for the last 2 years. This is a very competitive program that consistently excels at the state and national level. They practice 6 days a week for the entire school year as well as during Christmas and spring break. He just learned that the only way to get a varsity letter is if you are in the "A" boat at the state championships which take place at the end of the school year. There is definitely a possibility that he could be in the "A" boat for several races throughout the year but not in the state final race, thus never earning a varsity letter. (Supposedly this has happened to several kids over the years) He loves crew but is worried that he may not have a varsity letter by the end of junior year when he starts applying to the academies. How bad is it if he never gets that varsity letter? Would the admissions board know of the commitment involved if he stuck with crew? He could switch to track/cross country and earn letters there but would then have to give up rowing since there is no way to do any other sport while on the crew team.
  2. ca2midwestmom

    ca2midwestmom Member

    Oct 23, 2013
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    They are looking for consistency and dedication to a sport, so not having a Varsity letter won't doom him, especially if the team is very competitive and as you say performs at the state and national level. It seems to me that crew would be a good "team" sport to be on (like football & lacrosse), since it demands teamwork. Also remember the Academy has a crew team....maybe something to keep in mind re. being recruited, contacting the coach. I would say he should stay with the sport he enjoys and excels at. Looking at the Class of 2017 profile, the majority of candidates are Varsity athletes (90%). The other 10% may not have lettered, but you can bet they were involved in some form of athletics during high school.
  3. payitforward

    payitforward Member

    Sep 18, 2013
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    The standards for being awarded a varsity letter are all over the place though. At DS's school, you get a letter just for making the varsity team and then having a good attendance record.

    It's so not fair for the academies to use "varsity letter" as a benchmark if it's so hard for kids like your DS to achieve that honor, and yet so easy for someone else in a different sport or at a different school.

  4. navymomwannabe

    navymomwannabe Member

    Sep 7, 2013
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    +1 ca2midwestmom

    I would stick with crew as well, both because he loves it and because they compete at such a high level.

    good luck!
  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

    Oct 21, 2010
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    +1 to ca2midwestmom.

    @payitforward - Yes the rules for varsity letters generally vary from school district to school district and even by sport. I would [like to] think (don't know this) that the academies take this into account when making the evaluations. For all I know its part of the school profiles that get sent by the guidance counselors. Just surmise on my part though.
  6. mdn18

    mdn18 Member

    Dec 8, 2013
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    Yep I understand what y'all are saying. My HS swim team (which is only varsity, 9th-12th grade) requires that a swimmer earn 18 points to be considered for a varsity letter. I got one my junior year and will again this senior year, but for other sports, all you have to do is be in x amount of games to earn one. Kind of annoying, but hopefully they realize that.
  7. currey

    currey Member

    Dec 17, 2013
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    My son has been rowing for 5 years (4 years on varsity squad) and has applied for USNA. As we do not have crew at our high schools on the west coast it is a club based activity and no varsity letters are counted for the application. Just do what you are doing and drop the 2k time for the coaches to see.

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