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PURSUIT OF SCHOLARSHIP
John Walters
November 27, 2000
An online service helps high school athletes find colleges—and vice versa
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November 27, 2000

Pursuit Of Scholarship

An online service helps high school athletes find colleges—and vice versa

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Are you a high school senior seeking a college athletic scholarship? You might try clicking on collegerecruiting.com, a database that allows athletes to advertise themselves to recruiters. A student client pays $29 to list his or her profile, which is categorized by sport (39 in all) and subcategorized by such criteria as position, geographic region, SAT and ACT scores, grades and class rank. Clients list athletic and academic honors and can post game tapes, newspaper clippings and, perhaps most important, their phone numbers. Recruiters pay no fee to tap into the service.

The site was founded in 1997 by Wendi Swan-son, a former nonscholarship starting infielder for the Bucknell softball team. "This service isn't for the blue-chip, All-America stud," says Swanson, 28. Rather, it's for such players as Jacob Insler, a 5'11" senior point guard at Mira Costa High in Manhattan Beach, Calif. Insler has solid averages on the court (9.4 points and 4.2 assists per game last season) and in the classroom (3.85 GPA with a 1,200 SAT). "Recruiting isn't going quite that well," says Jacob, "so my dad thought that [the site] might be a good way to advertise myself." Insler might take heart from the story of Andrew Riffee, a freshman catcher at Division III Washington and Lee, whom coach Jeff Stickley contacted after seeing Riffee's profile on the site. "It really is like a blind-dating service," says Riffee of collegerecruiting.com.

Now if Swanson can only find her clients dates for the senior prom....

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