May 1 – Decision Day Musing

The date most coaches look forward to is upon us. May 1st is National College Decision Day as most schools require deposits at this point. Coaches can now finalize their rosters and can be as secure about their team as possible until they actually start showing up in August. Those that follow the site know I try to track down as many recruits as possible during the spring and summer and my first report card is in.

Belhaven has announced via Twitter right after midnight their incoming recruits and they currently stand at 6. How did I do? Well, let’s just say I had 2 and one of those was incorrect. Sigh, not a good start and flash backs to high school calculus have already begun. Still, I really do want to give Belhaven Coach Dee a big shout out for showing his incoming recruits a lot of love with their announcement coming so soon after midnight. Interesting note about their recruits is that the 6 come from 4 different states.

As I was updating my recruit’s page yesterday I came across the name Sarah Peluso and it just rang a bell inside my head. She is from Colorado and I remembered that Coach Scott Peluso was at LeTourneau until moving to Colorado. Sure enough, Sarah is his daughter and she’ll be attending Austin College and playing volleyball for the ‘Roos.

It’s weird the names/people you remember from your daughter’s recruiting still 6-years later. Scott was one of those people because he was one of a handful of coaches that saw my daughter’s best match during her 17s season. It was at Tour of Texas in Houston and the set in question ended 33-31 after the team trailed 11-20. (The last point can still be seen on my YouTube account and highlights my daughter’s cover skills and my LOUD cheering.) Every coach that was at that match recruited my daughter, which just shows how luck plays a role in recruiting. On the flip side, at the same tournament, the school she eventually went to stopped their recruiting (temporarily) because they saw a different match where my daughter only played right side.

Since I’m thinking about recruiting here’s more old man reminiscing stories. One of the major reasons my daughter ended up at Southwestern was because of the team and the overnight visit she took. She had visited Vassar where the team didn’t seem that interested in new recruits and she was passed around between players during her visit with none too thrilled with the experience. They all kept telling her that they needed a setter and she had to attend but none really wanted to invest time in the visit. She had also visited a Mid-Atlantic school where the team was more close-knit but the overnight turned into a frat party with alcohol. The Southwestern team all turned up in mass and went bowling and just talked about the team and their experiences and I believe there was a lot of Harry Potter conversations. She was sold. The team dynamic, to me, is one of the more undersold aspects of volleyball and their corresponding success. Sure, I’d love a 6’4” 6-rotation outside but if I had to choose, give me the team that will run through walls for each other on the court.

I’m sure the 2019 recruits and parents all have their stories and their reasons for making their decisions. I remember the relief we had once the decision was made and the deposit was submitted. Sure, that future college bill wasn’t going to be fun but we all had a good feeling about her choice. It also helped that she stopped looking towards those east coast schools and stayed in state.

A short note to all of the coaches out there. My niece is the byproduct of two tall parents, one of them in the Cal Berkeley Hall of Fame for volleyball. She’s only 10 but is already very tall. Did I mention she’s left handed and, since she’s related to me, brilliant? Anyway, future setter/right side heading your way.

The NCAA Beach Volleyball Championship is this weekend and it’s always entertaining. We’ve got USC, UCLA, Florida State, Pepperdine, LSU, Cal Poly, Hawaii and Stetson going for the title this year. First match is Friday morning and will be shown on ESPNU with the championship on Sunday. This is their fourth year for a championship with USC and UCLA being the only winners so far. The DII/DIII championship was a few weeks back with Tampa beating Texas A&M Kingsville. DIII schools Principia and Stevenson both competed.


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