In this post, we’ll discuss some of the unique aspects of college squash recruiting. So if you’re a squash player—or the parent of a squash player—and you’re starting to think about the options for college play, read on!
A (Small) Numbers Game
The more tournaments you attend, the more you’ll start noticing the same faces in the stands and on the court. Squash is a small world, and the world of college squash is no different. Though there’s no set size for a college team roster, varsity college squash teams are quite small—often only 10 to 20 players. This means that coaches will be looking to recruit only a small handful of players—usually less than five, and often only one or two.
Additionally, there are very few varsity college squash teams—you can find the complete list of the 38 schools which have varsity teams below. By comparison, there are over 650 NCAA football teams in the US. All of this means that squash recruiting is extremely limited and extremely competitive.
Looking down the list of schools with varsity teams below, you’ll see primarily Ivy League universities and small Division III schools. It’s important to note that no Ivy League or DIII schools award athletic scholarships, so there are very few squash scholarships available. In addition, squash recruits will have to be admitted via either the Early Decision or Regular Decision process. So aspiring squash players must balance the intense preparation and tournament travel necessary for maintaining a high national ranking on one hand, and the academic work necessary for maintaining a high GPA and strong test scores on the other. The old rumor that the squash team is a “back door” into a top school normally doesn’t hold up—aspiring recruits still must meet the general academic standards of the school to which they’re applying.
All of this means that being recruited to play college squash will require a great deal of dedication and preparation—both athletic and academic. But if you aren’t gunning for the top of the US Squash rankings list for your age group, fear not! Many universities offer that will enable you to pursue your interest in squash beyond high school.
Varsity Squash Teams*
* List from the College Squash Association
How do gender gaps in both applicant pools and student bodies vary across institutions? What do they mean for you?
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