To add on to the last post I know a kid who blossomed senior year as a LHP at an elite private. He was a two generation legacy at Penn. His father is a well known, prestigious lawyer in Philadelphia. The coach told the kid at the late date he was out of sway with admissions. The father pulled every string he had. The kid didn’t get accepted without baseball.
Admissions has changed over the past two generations. More and more people are trying to go to college. It’s become world competitive for US colleges. Two generations ago my average student father waltzed into a NESCAC on legacy status as a transfer after soph year at a Big Ten (football player).
In my generation UMass was Zoo Mass the last chance safety school. Now it’s academic rating is much higher. I know kids who didn’t get accepted. The qualifications used to be “can dad write the check.”