Hampden-Sydney

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September 21, 2009 6:56 AM

Any thoughts on this DIII program?
 
 
 
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September 22, 2009 10:45 AM

Hampden-Sydney has a good baseball tradition, but had been through a down period through the late 90's and early 2000's. Coach Kinne came on board, and since then they have been a very solid program with at least one great year thrown in where they went to the DIII World Series a few years ago (2006 or 2007 I think). The school has really improved the facilities including a nice large field house, and a completely remodeled "old" gym where most of their athletics are now based.

The school has a very southern feel (IMO) and campus is very nice. I grew up very close to HSC and it's a place where I attended many sporting events over the years. The students are intense in their support of the teams. Academically, it's a good school, but not great like some alums and current students would want you to believe. However, there is quite a strong alumni base when you graduate that can help with jobs, internships, etc. It is expensive ($40,000 plus I believe) and it's quickly obvious from the rides on campus and the look of the guys that many of them come from upper class backgrounds. That's not necessarily a good or bad thing, but just more for your info. Any specific questions- just ask and I'll do the best I can to answer.
 
 
 
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September 22, 2009 11:25 AM

As for the school, pretty campus. Baseball field is on campus.

Rural, but Longwood U. is in the same town.
 
 
 
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September 22, 2009 12:58 PM

Also, one other note which is always a question that is asked....it is all men, at least Monday through Thursday. With Thursday, Friday, and Saturday being big party nights, and the fact that several all female (or predominantly female) colleges are within driving distance, there is quite a population of females Thursdsay night through Sunday.
 
 
 
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October 22, 2009 9:37 PM

Hampden-Sydney hosts a "Best in Virginia" showcase camp in the summer. You son could come for a weekend. Here is the link for the 2009 camp:
http://www.vabaseballcamps.com/showcase.html
 
 
 
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October 25, 2009 4:47 PM

metroclubball,
Jeff at HSC is a good guy and a good coach. Be prepared to work hard and understand failure is not an option with his program. We play them each and every year, and I always know they will fight to the end, they will play hard, fundamental baseball. I consider Coach a friend, and I have alot of respect for his program. I just hope we get the best of them this season :-)
 
 
 
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October 25, 2009 5:39 PM

Thanks VJC-Sounds like a good match for my son. He has been in touch with several DIII and some DII schools but has been most impressed with Coach Kinne so far. Son likes a challenge and I think is up for it and I believe would make a valuable contribution to their baseball program.
 
 
 
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December 15, 2009 7:31 PM

My sophmore son is going to a hitting camp in about 2 weeks there and he has expressed interest in going to HSC. He is a 2B for Varsity this year and nbr 3 pitcher in rotation.

Any thoughts on how the baseball program is ran? Do they over recruit? JV team?
 
 
 
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December 15, 2009 8:01 PM

Although my son decided to sign with a D2 school, HS was his in his top three D3 schools. My understanding is no over recruiting and also no jv team. I think Coach Kinne is the real deal.
 
 
 
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December 15, 2009 8:26 PM

I'd agree with the recommendation that anyone considering HS attend the BIV camp. Staying a week there gives you a pretty good idea about living there and a little bit about the baseball program. It won't be the same as visiting during the school year, but you get to experience the dorms, fields, and other facilities.
 
 
 
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January 5, 2010 5:42 PM

We attended the hitting camp with coach Kinne and coach Catron and my son really enjoyed himself. A lot of one on one instruction. 17 kids showed up and there were 4 coaches there, head coach, hitting and pitching coach for HSC and a Ferrum College guy, my guess is use to be a player.

We did a ton of live hitting and video was very helpful. Coach gave us great reviews and asked us to come back for Summer showcase and fall showcase. Coach Kinne seemed very honest and relaxed.

Price tag around $40K but if you are military like me, $21 is covered thru Yellow Ribbon Program, plus another $15 is covered thru VA, so remaining balance is only about $4K.

Campus was great. Truly a College atmosphere with very nice baseball field. They also have a indoor hitting cage for players to hit in the winter. Longwood University, D1 school also in the same town about 10 minutes away.
 
 
 
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January 5, 2010 7:36 PM

NoVa - Which colleges attended BIV when you were there?
 
 
 
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January 6, 2010 8:20 AM

rlscosta,

My guess is the Ferrum guy was Coach Catron's son...I'm not 100% positive, but that would be my guess.

I grew up in the Hampden-Sydney area, so if you have any questions about the school or area, feel free to PM and I'll answer as best I can.
 
 
 
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January 7, 2010 9:11 AM

HS--Odd that kids with high GPAs and SATs choose to attend, given relatively low admissions standards, all-boys reality of the campus, and fact that it is in a very quiet part of VA (Farmville, along with Longwood). There must be something to the tradition, the post-graduation network, or the quality of the education that attracts students with credentials that would get them into much better schools. HS is always ranked high in U.S. News and the like, yet GPA and SAT numbers would suggest a much lower level student, academically, than they often get.

HS baseball--it's Div III. You have to choose at some point in your life--baseball and all the time and energy it takes, or something else (focus on academics, a job, an intership during the spring, study abroad, a relationship)? We all make the "something else" choice at some time, and it is worth asking whether playing at the Div III level outweighs what you give up in terms of working towards your future. Certainly, if you want baseball to be a part of that future, then by all means, stick with it at the highest possible level. If not, then think about when you hang up the spikes and concentrate on life after baseball.

BIV--my son attended and we know of dozens of others who attended. It was hit and miss. My son had some good college coaches (Div III) provide good instruction and guidance. Lots of PT. Other kids had HS coaches who seemed to care less about helping the kids. There were some fools, as well, screaming at the kids like they were Bear Bryant when he was still at A&M. What nuts. Great for kids interested in HS. Great for kids who get the luck of the draw and have good experiences. Terrible for kids who get the short straws.
 
 
 
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January 8, 2010 11:15 AM

rhobbs - I very much agree with your post. As for baseball/DIII, I think it is simply difficult to go cold turkey after last year of high school, particularly if you were a good player. DIII is a good transition, but as you point out, sometimes the trade-off, at least, appears to be questionable in the long term view.
 
 
 
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January 8, 2010 3:58 PM

quote:
HS baseball--it's Div III. You have to choose at some point in your life--baseball and all the time and energy it takes, or something else (focus on academics, a job, an intership during the spring, study abroad, a relationship)? We all make the "something else" choice at some time, and it is worth asking whether playing at the Div III level outweighs what you give up in terms of working towards your future. Certainly, if you want baseball to be a part of that future, then by all means, stick with it at the highest possible level. If not, then think about when you hang up the spikes and concentrate on life after baseball.


rhobbs, why make this comment about DIII as opposed to NAIA, DII or DI?
What would be the reasons/considerations to play at each of those(NAIA, DI and DII) levels but would have playing at DIII level baseball "outweighed" by what you give up in terms of "working toward your future?"
Just the other day I posted some stats about DI graduation rates for baseball players. Schools like Texas, LSU, and Fullerton are graduating anywhere from 27% to 40% of their baseball players.
If we envision the role of college is to educate, wouldn't most of those DI players be better off giving up baseball in favor of their education? Even coming out of those schools, the chances of having a career and making a living in baseball is slim, at the very, very best, and more realistically, less than that.
You really have my interest piqued in your comments so I look forward to reading your thoughts.
 
Last edited by infielddad January 8, 2010 4:05 PM
 
 
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January 9, 2010 6:05 AM

A DI player, and certainly at the colleges you mention, have been actively recruited, and in the eyes of at least one coach, have "pro potential." Virtually every DI player, when they start college, is thinking that the pros are a possibility. DIII players generally do not get that kind of praise/interest/scholarchip offer, because if they did, they would most likely go DI. This is not to say that DIII players are bad. They're not.
 
 
 
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January 9, 2010 9:08 AM

quote:
Virtually every DI player, when they start college, is thinking that the pros are a possibility.


There is a huge difference between thinking you have pro possibility and proving you are one of the maybe 2-3% of the college players that end up on a MLB roster.
Personally, to say that every DI player is someone seen as having pro potential isn't accurate either. When you are talking about the 3 schools I listed, having the ability to play college ball at a high level and get drafted is the best projection that can be said. I would propose the vast majority of players at the DI level don't have that level of skill and projectability.
Even if we accept that as a given, are you guys saying players at those schools, being graduated at the rates I listed, are justified making the sacrifice college baseball requires, with the slim chance of being drafted and even slimmer of getting to MLB, even though 3 out of 10 don't graduate?
Head off to a DIII regional come May. After you watch the level of play, the intensity of the competition, the desire, the love of the game and quality of players, we could talk about this again.
As opposed to what you have posted, I might propose that graduation rates like I have posted do not justify having the option to play at the DI level.
To suggest college baseball can be justified and supported because it provides a route to get drafted into Milb is a position I question. Why do you propose that is a valid reason?
 
 
 
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January 9, 2010 9:47 AM

Athletes consider minor & independent leagues as "professional," and it is.

This is true for all college sports, not just baseball. When they sign LOI as HS senior they believe they have a shot.

rhobbs point (I think) is that HS seniors should play to their talents. If they are a high academic talent, they should not subordinate that talent to play DIII, NAIA, etc.

By the way, I watch alot of DIII.
 
 
 
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January 9, 2010 12:12 PM

I just don't agree with the concept that you cannot do both at a very high level.
Our son played and later coached at a DIII where the entrance requirements are now around 1,300 SAT, 3.75 GPA.
They have also been nationally ranked most every year, have played in the West Regional 4 times since 2002, and have had 7 recruits drafted. Each has graduated as do about 90% of the baseball players.
To suggest those types of student/athletes are wasting their time on the baseball field, but DI players at the vast number of mid to lower ranked programs are not just seems/sounds quite DI elitist.
As gets posted on this site all the time, there are many DI's who would not be playing at many DIII programs and there are plenty of DIII players who can play at the upper level DI's.
 
Last edited by infielddad January 9, 2010 12:13 PM
 
 
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January 9, 2010 2:49 PM

Baseball is great wherever it is played and some of the greatest players and coaches I have known have come from Division III schools.
 
 
 
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July 26, 2010 10:08 PM

Success in life is working hard and doing what you enjoy. I know of few people that are successful AND happy that have put their passion on hold to focus solely on a career. Play as long as you can at whatever you can!

PS: Billy Wagner came out of a Virginia school even smaller and more rural.
 
Last edited by Bludevil_bk July 26, 2010 10:09 PM
 
 
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August 23, 2010 3:27 PM

Just a small tidbit to add to the conversation:

Playing at a D-3 school is not the termination of a professional dream. At least not as much as it used to be. If you're a pro talent, scouts will find you anywhere, and there is a higher percentage of college players taken now than 20 years ago.

Keystone College (in PA), D-3, had 4 (that's FOUR) players drafted this year in the 2010 draft. How many D-1 programs cannot say that?

Anyway, my son (now a senior) has spoken with Coach Kinne several times, we played at their field this summer - good guy, seems to be old-school in a good way - excellent facility.
 
 
 
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August 23, 2010 8:57 PM

Kudos for those players, but are you saying that you would advise a HS baseball player should choose Keystone over Pitt? A few DIII players are drafted every year. Hundreds of DI players are drafted. This is no knock on DIII. I had one child play DIII.
 
 
 
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August 23, 2010 9:18 PM

No, I'm obviously not advising anyone to choose Keystone over Pitt, what I'm saying is that choosing to compete at the D-3 level at some programs is not the baseball purgatory that it used to be. The college game is scouted more thoroughly now, and the fact is that some D-3 programs are stronger than some D-1 programs. A recent discussion I had three weeks ago with an Ivy League assistant coach who will not be named resulted in him admitting to me for example, that if his team last spring played Johns Hopkins in a 7 game series, that Hopkins would likely have beaten them 4-5 games.
The point of my comment is that most HS players live in the shadow of the myth that playing (or riding the bench) at any D-1 program represents a more significant accomplishment than being a four-year starter at a D-3 school, and I think that's a fallacy. It depends on what the student/athlete wants in a school AND a baseball program.
 
 
 
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