Describe the qualities that your program is looking for in a potential student-athlete?
At George Washington University, our cross country program is in the developing phase. We have high aspirations for the program and in order to reach our goals we need to be recruiting athletes that are talented and are a good fit for GW. First off we look at the runners personal best times in different events and we see how they have progressed from when they first began running till now. We have certain time standards for those who would be eligible for athletic scholarship, however we do accept walk-ons. We believe in developing athletes so we look for those who have potential for improvement. The high school cross country and track program that the recruit is coming from is also very important to us. We like recruits who come from successful high school programs because they have experience competing at a National level and understand the importance of competing as a team. Talent is important to us but throughout the recruiting process we really try to get to know the recruit and get a sense of their character. We are looking for dedicated, hard-working, internally motivated individuals. Academics and running must be their top priority. We also want athletes who want to be a part of a program where they can have an impact and help get the program to where we expect it to be. Academics are extremely important at GW so we also make sure they have been successful on that end as well.
Could you give us an example of a current or former player who exceeded your expectations, highlighting the reasons that player excelled?
We had one standout athlete last year who had a very up and down running career due to injuries. However, he was one of the best leaders that ever came through the program. He was extremely reliable and held the team together. Last year there were a lot of transitions for the team, such as a brand new coaching staff with myself included. He was able to guide our younger athletes through that and help change the culture of the program to a more positive one. He excelled in the classroom and guided our team through many community service programs. So even though he wasn’t one of our top runners he still gave back to the program and was a standout leader. We are looking for people like him who can have a tremendous impact on and off the course.