Recruited athlete vs. regular applicant?


5-Year Member
Jan 6, 2017
I am a female who will be applying for the class of 2023, and there is also a male in my grade who is a recruited lacrosse player. Will the fact that he is a recruited athlete be more advantageous to his admission? Do I have a smaller chance of appointment because he is recruited and I'm not? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
There are others on here far more knowledgeable, but I can share our experience. My DS was a recruited athlete. He had a very good friend who was applying to West Point as well, but was not a recruited athlete. The shared experience was great until the dreaded questions of nominations came up: From who, how many, etc... As it turned out his friend live "just" outside our congressional district. So they only competed head-to-head for their Senate nominations. My DS actually got his offer of appointment before he even interviewed with a Congressman or Senator. This, as I understand it, is uncommon but does occur each year and could occur for the lacrosse recruit (I still don’t know how or why). When they went for their Senator interviews they knew about both of them and even asked (in a nice way) why they should choose one over the other. My DS eventually got his US Rep nomination. We never heard from one Senator and the other let us know that because he was getting a nomination from his US Rep they would not be offering one. A long story short - they have both accepted their appointments as part of the Class of 2021. It may seem stressful, and may seem like the odds are stacked, but keep moving forward. There is nothing to keep 2 kids, from the same school, from both getting nominations and appointments. It is too early and too long a process to stress about it now. I would just worry about you and the rest will fall where it does. Best of luck.
Being a recruited athlete is an inherent advantage, (as is being a female) and he will have that advantage when applying. How exactly that affects your chances is impossible to tell, and I wouldn't consider his recruitment a disadvantage to your application. What's important to remember is that many things, such as this, are completely beyond your control, and you really shouldn't think about it too much.

Focus on doing everything you can control to the best of your abilities, and don't worry too much about what you can't control.
There are lots of threads on this. There are many variables that can play into this. A few factors... there are different levels of being recruited. None of us will know where that recruit falls on the list. The coaches only have so many 'blue chip' spots. If someone is the 'must have' recruit the coaches could use one of those spots. Some coaches can use Supt Noms to extend an early offer of appointment to someone who is 3Q other wise. Admissions wants recruits to still go through the nom process as it allows them to eventually 'charge' that spot to someone else possibly. Just because someone is being recruited doesn't mean they will do well on their interview. MOCs are under no obligation to nominate an athlete. I have sat on MOC boards and seen recruited athletes crush their interviews and others sink badly. I have seen 6 kids get appointed from the same high school in the same year. Apply for all nomination sources and put together your best application. You can't control anything else in this process but you.
^^ I agree. Being recruited is NO guarantee that someone will eventually get an appointment. You can find a number of threads on here where someone focuses on being recruited with the idea this will somehow move their application to the head of the line, when in reality that isn't how it works. Just because someone tells you they are being 'recruited' doesn't necessarily mean they are considered a 'blue chip' athlete (very few are). Some might also boast about being recruited when in fact all they have done is had some contact with the coaches. Coaches talk to MANY potential athletes. More then 1 person from the same h.s. can get appointments (many examples of that posted on here in the past). You are in a competition with everyone else applying in that year. I would not overly focus on just one other applicant. That person may also change their mind and decide to attend a different SA then WP or none at all, so lots can happen during the application process.
Your chromosomes are being recruited. ;)

Like everyone else, there is nothing you can do but your best and not worry about anyone else. Good luck.
Not at all, in my experience. There are four people from my district that were appointed, only one a recruited athlete.
All true; however, the reality is that a recruited athlete can effect the chances of someone else getting a spot. This is particularly true if the athlete has a decent application beyond being an athlete. A desired athlete in a brand name sport who has decent but not spectacular academic numbers may win a MOC spot over others who are abundantly more qualified. That doesn't mean the others won't still find a way in, but it could eliminate the most obvious avenue for those applicants.

We recently found out a 6'7" defensive lineman from my sons hs was visited by an Army coach, and offered him a spot (which I didn't think was possible). The parents are friends of ours. The kid is finishing his junior year, and has wanted to attend WP for years, but has sub-par math scores on the ACT, so the parents didn't think he could get a spot. Coach said if math score doesn't go up he will get a spot at the prep school. The kid would have a great application except for the ACT. Very good kid, decent grades, and involve in multiple sports and organizations. But ACT would have likely kept him out. Being a recruited athlete though will apparently change that.
I have a couple classes with the lax player, and he isn't very academic. I however am, so I know that helps a lot.
Will the fact that he is a recruited athlete be more advantageous to his admission?
Of course being a recruited athlete is advantageous. Just because he is recruited does not guarantee admission. DO NOT let HIS recruitment affect YOUR aspirations to attend USMA.

I am a female who will be applying for the class of 2023
Being female is something HE will never be.....I don't think. Be proud of this because it is who YOU are and, IMO, it is YOUR advantage.

Do I have a smaller chance of appointment because he is recruited and I'm not?
You cannot control HIS chance(s) of appointment. You can only affect YOURS! Focus on what YOU can affect by becoming academically qualified, medically qualified and physically qualified.

I have a couple classes with the lax player, and he isn't very academic. I however am, so I know that helps a lot.
This is another advantage of YOURS.
1. USNA (just like every college with sports) talks to a lot of athletes. This is a far cry from being recruited. They are simply discussing mutual interest at this point.

2. Recruited or not, you still need to have a strong overall package to compete. If he is weak (relatively speaking) academically, he will not get appointed regardless of how good a lacrosse player he is.

3. Do not accept that premise that because you are female, you are going to get special consideration. Yes, USNA wants a diverse group in their class make-up. But, even if you only competed against other females - that group alone is highly competitive. (I will concede that years ago it might have helped your cause.) Many years ago females were unaware of the opportunities Service Academies provided and the military itself had tremendous restrictions on the roles females were allowed to perform. Many of those restrictions have been eliminated and service academy awareness for women and other minorities has been expanded tremendously.

4. You can only control your resume. Don't spend too many cycles worrying about someone else's. As a 2023 candidate, you have plenty of time to enhance your resume.
Lots of different things here but the answer is yes, no, and maybe. There is no way to know at this point in the game and it comes down to who you are competing for nominations and which slates you are both on. You here all these comments about three from my district, two from my school, etc but what is not being said is their appointment source. This year my our district has at least two appointees and neither are from our local MOC. Here are the scenarios:

1. Recruit is a Blue Chip athlete. Each coach has a few of these "chips" that they can use for an outstanding athlete. These are basically Academy nominations and appointments. If the athlete truly has one of these, it will not affect your chance of appointment. The athlete may not even apply for other nominations as he is already in. Please note that there are only a few of these each year.

2. Recruit shows potential and his file is identified as a recruited athlete. They will compete for the same nominations and appointment slots as you. They will get a few more points in the WCS for athletics but they would have to be the most qualified candidate to win the slot.

3. Recruit competes and does not win his slate. After the first 150 individuals are taken from the NWL, the next group are called additional appointees. The academy can pick and chose here and give additional consideration to recruited athletes.

So that is the explanation of the process but to go along with what everyone else says, only focus on what you can control and do your best. If you are the highest ranked individual on your slate, you will get an appointment regardless of the recruit.

I would disagree slightly with the comment that you are competing against everyone else who has applied. While this is technically true, you are most likely to gain an appointment as a high school student by winning your slate. Appointments from the first 150 of the NWL are very difficult for high school students as the scoring system gives a significant advantage to re-applicants.

I would also agree with my friend @Cerberi. Do not think you will get special consideration because you are a women. You have to work hard and do your best to be the best candidate that you can be.
There is a difference between getting a NOM and being 3Q (although you need both to be in the RUNNING for an appointment). The SAME criteria is used nationally to determine who is 3Q. Don't confuse that with getting a NOM. I don't care to speculate on who has a better 'chance' of getting a NOM, posting what is factual does those applying the most good.