Author Topic: New England Soccer Discussion  (Read 319728 times)

Offline Mr.Right

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #315 on: July 15, 2015, 07:58:09 am »
It really does not come down to what potential incoming players hear about Murphy. When comparing Conn, Trinity and Bates the 3 "weakest academic schools" in Nescac. Trinity offers some of the best athletic facilities in Nescac. They can get kids in that other Nescac's can not. Trinity's issue in my opinion is Pilger. He may be one of the laziest recruiters in Nescac. Look at other Trinity sports teams and they dominate Nescac. Bates is a slightly better academic school but is the toughest to recruit to. The campus is ok at best and no one wants to be in Lewiston, Maine. One of the uglier cities in New England and in the middle of nowhere. Conn is in one of the best locations and scenic areas in Nescac. Conn's issue is endowment and $$$. Just take a quick tour of the campus and you feel like you have walked right back into the 80's. Murphy recruits exceptionally well and is one of the hardest working recruiters Nescac has. You need to "'wow" these kids these days and Conn has absolutely no "Wows" on campus. So they are actually competing with more schools outside of Nescac than in Nescac.

Offline Corazon

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #316 on: July 15, 2015, 09:51:06 am »
I agree Murphy is a good recruiter and his staff is one of the more proactive ones I see in the NESCAC.  He's pulled in some D1 talent for sure - this is a result of the coaching staff's work ethic.

Also agree with the lack of "wow" factor on the campus.  Another minor issue that I see with Conn is getting to the soccer field from the campus.  Having to walk over a bridge over a very busy road which feels like a freeway kills the vibe when comparing to the many idlyllic campuses in the NESCAC.  This is a minor issue but you're dealing with impressionable 17 year olds.

Offline letsGOswans!

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #317 on: July 15, 2015, 11:40:52 am »
This is wrong. Conn plays their games on a beautiful field right in the middle of campus. The turf field is located at the athletic center which is across the bridge, and is only used during bad weather conditions.

I agree Murphy is a good recruiter and his staff is one of the more proactive ones I see in the NESCAC.  He's pulled in some D1 talent for sure - this is a result of the coaching staff's work ethic.

Also agree with the lack of "wow" factor on the campus.  Another minor issue that I see with Conn is getting to the soccer field from the campus.  Having to walk over a bridge over a very busy road which feels like a freeway kills the vibe when comparing to the many idlyllic campuses in the NESCAC.  This is a minor issue but you're dealing with impressionable 17 year olds.

Offline Corazon

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #318 on: July 15, 2015, 12:18:21 pm »
Thanks for the correction - You're right. I forgot that they play the actual games right in the middle of campus. I suppose the turf is for practice then. I was just passing along what a recruit's dad told me (who I was suggesting NESCAC to) as he was frustrated at his son's reaction. 

Offline PaulNewman

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #319 on: July 15, 2015, 03:37:20 pm »
I have to agree with Mr.Right here.

Conn is a very nice school, but it's sort of like the non-descript, faceless "quintessential liberal arts college."  Compared to other NESCACs and similar schools both in region and out, Conn seems to be lacking a strong identity or character to the place.  I don't think Trinity is a "better" school, but Trinity definitely has a certain identity, with strong ties to NYC, and a lot of money.  Bates has the struggles Mr.Right mentioned, but when I think of someone who likely goes to Bates I have a particular picture on my head.  Bates also benefits from the longstanding association with the other 2 Maine NESCACs.  Union strikes me as a great example of a peer school to Conn that also has real character and a stunning campus (albeit with the same downside as Trinity directly adjacent to a sketchy urban area).  Same with strong LACs in other regions.  Mention Haverford, Carleton, Macalester, Grinnell, Oberlin, the school that will not be named, Whitman, etc and a certain feeling or vibe is evoked.

Offline FourMoreYears

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #320 on: July 15, 2015, 08:37:10 pm »
I have to agree with Mr.Right here.

Conn is a very nice school, but it's sort of like the non-descript, faceless "quintessential liberal arts college."  Compared to other NESCACs and similar schools both in region and out, Conn seems to be lacking a strong identity or character to the place.  I don't think Trinity is a "better" school, but Trinity definitely has a certain identity, with strong ties to NYC, and a lot of money.  Bates has the struggles Mr.Right mentioned, but when I think of someone who likely goes to Bates I have a particular picture on my head.  Bates also benefits from the longstanding association with the other 2 Maine NESCACs.  Union strikes me as a great example of a peer school to Conn that also has real character and a stunning campus (albeit with the same downside as Trinity directly adjacent to a sketchy urban area).  Same with strong LACs in other regions.  Mention Haverford, Carleton, Macalester, Grinnell, Oberlin, the school that will not be named, Whitman, etc and a certain feeling or vibe is evoked.

Actually, I agree with everything Senor Correcto said about Conn College too ... and to be clear I was not suggesting that Murphy and his staff are not excellent recruiters.  If you think about it, they HAVE to be, since they have to overcome some obstacles the school presents. My only point was that he is developing a reputation with more than a few kids and that reputation is not helping him.  Garnered from multiple first hand accounts over the past three recruiting cycles.  Hey, not every coach is going to hit it off with every recruit.  And no coach is perfect.  But it's not isolated.  There continue to be rumors swirling that more than a few players have left the Conn College program and will not return in 2015.  Perhaps they are just rumors ... time will tell. 

Regardless, I'm anxious for the season to start. :-)

Offline nescac1

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #321 on: July 15, 2015, 09:19:04 pm »
Speaking of wow factor, a bit off topic but since it has come up, what Williams has done to the center of its campus (at tremendous cost) is absolutely incredible.  The new library is not only the best library in NESCAC, but the best overall (in terms of form meeting function) college or university library I've ever seen.  I encourage anyone who goes to campus to visit the library -- it's beyond spectacular, both the historic older portion and the sleek moden section are simply perfect.

The newish student center is almost as spectacular, especially the dramatic main hall, and now with Sawyer demolished it boasts incredible mountain views.  There will be a massive central green space on campus right in between them (still under development), a combined geographic / conceptual central campus quad / gathering space that Williams had always been sorely lacking (as opposed to say Amherst, which has always had a clear center to its campus).  Surrounding that forthcoming green space (in addition to the student center and the library) is Chapin, the most iconic building on campus (with the large columns), two understated-but-attractive new humanities buildings, and the new environmental center, which is the first "living building" in the country and will wow a lot of kids interested in environmental issues.  Williams' academic and student life facilities right now blow the rest of the NESCAC away (especially Amherst, which has far inferior dining hall, library, student center, and academic facilities, at least until its long-overdue new science center is constructed in three more years). 

Interestingly, the one area where Williams could use some improvement is about 50 percent of its athletic facilities, which pale in comparison to the newer facilities around the conference -- Williams has a killer golf course (no surprise that the women won the national title in golf this year) the new football / lacrosse / field hockey and outdoor track facility is the best in NESCAC, and Chandler is still a really nice, pleasant, very functional place to watch and play hoops, with huge capacity, although lacking in the character of some of the other NESCAC gyms.  The squash courts are also great.  But Williams' weight room / fitness center lags far behind most of the conference, as does its main set of locker rooms.  The hockey arena needs a serious upgrade, and the main Fieldhouse is truly godawful.  Also, there just isn't enough space in Chandler to accommodate both volleyball and both basketball teams during the period their seasons overlap, which has become a a problem. 

I imagine in the next wave of campus construction, the field house will be replaced and the ice hockey/Chandler/Lasell complex will get a big upgrade -- considering nearly every other academic or student life facility is either brand new or recently renovated, there's not much left to raise funds for!  But I do wonder if all the snazzy new facilities completed over the past decade will have an overall impact on recruiting, after years in which the campus was a bit of a mess from all the construction.  You can't help but be impressed when you see not only the library and student center, but also the science facilities, theater and studio art facilities, and so on.  At the very least, football, field hockey and lacrosse, several programs which have not been very strong in recent years, should all benefit from the HUGE upgrade to Weston Field. 

Nutmeg

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #322 on: July 15, 2015, 09:36:56 pm »
Speaking of wow factor, a bit off topic but since it has come up, what Williams has done to the center of its campus (at tremendous cost) is absolutely incredible.  The new library is not only the best library in NESCAC, but the best overall (in terms of form meeting function) college or university library I've ever seen.  I encourage anyone who goes to campus to visit the library -- it's beyond spectacular, both the historic older portion and the sleek moden section are simply perfect.

The newish student center is almost as spectacular, especially the dramatic main hall, and now with Sawyer demolished it boasts incredible mountain views.  There will be a massive central green space on campus right in between them (still under development), a combined geographic / conceptual central campus quad / gathering space that Williams had always been sorely lacking (as opposed to say Amherst, which has always had a clear center to its campus).  Surrounding that forthcoming green space (in addition to the student center and the library) is Chapin, the most iconic building on campus (with the large columns), two understated-but-attractive new humanities buildings, and the new environmental center, which is the first "living building" in the country and will wow a lot of kids interested in environmental issues.  Williams' academic and student life facilities right now blow the rest of the NESCAC away (especially Amherst, which has far inferior dining hall, library, student center, and academic facilities, at least until its long-overdue new science center is constructed in three more years). 

Interestingly, the one area where Williams could use some improvement is about 50 percent of its athletic facilities, which pale in comparison to the newer facilities around the conference -- Williams has a killer golf course (no surprise that the women won the national title in golf this year) the new football / lacrosse / field hockey and outdoor track facility is the best in NESCAC, and Chandler is still a really nice, pleasant, very functional place to watch and play hoops, with huge capacity, although lacking in the character of some of the other NESCAC gyms.  The squash courts are also great.  But Williams' weight room / fitness center lags far behind most of the conference, as does its main set of locker rooms.  The hockey arena needs a serious upgrade, and the main Fieldhouse is truly godawful.  Also, there just isn't enough space in Chandler to accommodate both volleyball and both basketball teams during the period their seasons overlap, which has become a a problem. 

I imagine in the next wave of campus construction, the field house will be replaced and the ice hockey/Chandler/Lasell complex will get a big upgrade -- considering nearly every other academic or student life facility is either brand new or recently renovated, there's not much left to raise funds for!  But I do wonder if all the snazzy new facilities completed over the past decade will have an overall impact on recruiting, after years in which the campus was a bit of a mess from all the construction.  You can't help but be impressed when you see not only the library and student center, but also the science facilities, theater and studio art facilities, and so on.  At the very least, football, field hockey and lacrosse, several programs which have not been very strong in recent years, should all benefit from the HUGE upgrade to Weston Field.

Nescac1, sounds like you work in the Williams admission dept. 😎

Offline letsGOswans!

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #323 on: July 15, 2015, 09:44:35 pm »
It is true that a number of players will not be returning for Conn in the fall due to various reasons. Let me assure you that many of these kids who are "left" were not going to be on the team in the fall even if they stayed. Murphy has high expectations for his team and he makes it clear from the get go. A few of thise  who "left" the team did not meet these expectations. As expected, the natural reaction to these changes is to pin the blame on the coach. . A few others left the team for reasons,  unrelated to soccer, that I'm not at liberty to disclose.

Offline frank uible

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #324 on: July 16, 2015, 06:32:02 am »
nescac1: Yeh, but does Williams have a soul?

Offline amh63

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #325 on: July 16, 2015, 10:03:37 am »
Nescac1.....seems that you had a reunion?  Always nice to refresh your memories and open your wallet to your alma mater! :). Did I get the Latin correct, Frank?
Must point out that the other members of the "little Three" have organic "farms" to provide the fresh food....to attract recruits.  Just kidding here, but true.
I also feel that coaches help bring the recruits more than buildings.  Soul can help too :).

Offline nescac1

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #326 on: July 16, 2015, 10:18:00 am »
To answer Frank's question: if it ever had one, it certainly still does! 

Not a reunion, just happened to be in the Berkshires ... and I definitely agree that coaches (as well as admissions directors, who probably matter most :)) matter far more than anything else.  But nice facilities certainly don't hurt.  Williams certainly had no trouble bringing in football talent, despite a pretty awful football complex, under previous admissions / coaching regimes ... and Williams' previous admissions regime didn't exactly hurt Russo's recruiting efforts during the Stephenson/Blake era. 

Offline All NESCAC

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #327 on: July 16, 2015, 10:34:05 am »
It is true that a number of players will not be returning for Conn in the fall due to various reasons. Let me assure you that many of these kids who are "left" were not going to be on the team in the fall even if they stayed. Murphy has high expectations for his team and he makes it clear from the get go. A few of thise  who "left" the team did not meet these expectations. As expected, the natural reaction to these changes is to pin the blame on the coach. . A few others left the team for reasons,  unrelated to soccer, that I'm not at liberty to disclose.

Above is true, as has been mentioned before, hopefully the result of such numerous changes (and it could be up to 6 or 7 non-returning players in addition to the 7 seniors they graduated) will create a better atmosphere all around for the team to reboot, but they will likely take their lumps this coming Fall with a very very young team.  Murphy's style of coaching and soccer is not for everyone, but over the last 5 years he did produce teams that gave the rest of the NESCAC a lot of concern. 

Offline FourMoreYears

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #328 on: July 16, 2015, 11:46:47 am »
It is true that a number of players will not be returning for Conn in the fall due to various reasons. Let me assure you that many of these kids who are "left" were not going to be on the team in the fall even if they stayed. Murphy has high expectations for his team and he makes it clear from the get go. A few of thise  who "left" the team did not meet these expectations. As expected, the natural reaction to these changes is to pin the blame on the coach. . A few others left the team for reasons,  unrelated to soccer, that I'm not at liberty to disclose.

Above is true, as has been mentioned before, hopefully the result of such numerous changes (and it could be up to 6 or 7 non-returning players in addition to the 7 seniors they graduated) will create a better atmosphere all around for the team to reboot, but they will likely take their lumps this coming Fall with a very very young team.  Murphy's style of coaching and soccer is not for everyone, but over the last 5 years he did produce teams that gave the rest of the NESCAC a lot of concern.

Thank you to both letsGOswans and All NESCAC for the clarifying information, very much appreciated. 

Offline jumpshot

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Re: New England Soccer Discussion
« Reply #329 on: July 17, 2015, 09:47:00 am »
There is no question that Williams has done a superb job of investing resources in a spectacular, functional, and well-integrated campus, thereby providing optimal facilities as the platform for educating and developing young men and women as one element of the total enterprise.

Williams College's world-wide impact for generations evidences abundant soul --- and character.

Talk among yourselves ....