Rachael's plans

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by jlai, Mar 27, 2010.

  1. jlai

    jlai Title-less

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    According to Sarah and Drew:

    Rachael has been accepted to Stanford, UCLA and University of Denver so far.

    Rachael: “I may defer for a year from college so I can continue to skate competitively. I hope to make that decision in the coming weeks."

    http://twitter.com/sarahanddrew

    I'd love to see what she could do in skating without school. That said, I recall the Manleywoman's podcast on Debi Thomas and she said she was so used to juggling school and skating, when she finally just focused on skating it was a tough mental transition for her.

    Good luck to Rachael whatever she chooses
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2010
  2. manleywoman

    manleywoman podcast mistress

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    Yes, but it worked well for Matt Savoie!
  3. IceKween

    IceKween New Member

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    I hope she just goes to college and remember her competitive skating career fondly. She was a US champ and an Olympian. I'm not sure she could ever repeat as either. She's a sweet girl, very academically oriented, it's time for her to major in math and forget about skating. IMO.
  4. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    I disagree with that. She isn't as good as Mirai, but she's arguably the second best US lady. I know everyone gets sick of hearing about her consistency, but it is a huge competitive advantage. She's also only seventeen, so she does still have some time to grow as a skater. I think it's too early to write her off.
  5. MR-FAN

    MR-FAN Kostner Softie

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    And Paul Wylie!
    gkelly and (deleted member) like this.
  6. manleywoman

    manleywoman podcast mistress

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    As much as I'm not a fan, I agree. If she wants to keep going, good for her.
  7. loopey

    loopey Well-Known Member

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    I hope she takes the rest of her school year, has a good time as a senior, relaxes, and then makes a decision based on what she really wants in her heart.

    I usually don't call for skaters to change coaches, but in two cases I do think a new coach would make a difference. She is one.

    Good Luck to Rachael!
  8. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    Glad to hear she wants to skate competitively. Wylie was attending Harvard and skating competitively at the same time. So may be Rachael can handle school and skating simultaneously? I hope she goes to Stanford. It's the best school out of the three mentioned here. She must be very bright.
  9. timing

    timing fragrance free

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    If she wants to skate then I hope she does. The people I know who deferred college for a year or two did not regret doing so.
  10. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

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    I hope she goes to UCLA. ;P

    Isn't it possible in the US to get an "individual schedule" of sorts so that you take less classes and spread them out over more years for example, so that you can still train and compete?
  11. jlai

    jlai Title-less

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    I was originally commenting on Rachael's option of deferring college and how suddenly focusing on skating and not having school may not work for some so very used to juggling between two things. Are you saying that focusing on skating and not school works for some?
    Sounds like you guys are saying school and skating works together.
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2010
  12. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    After these Olympics and Worlds, the writing's on the wall if she chooses to continue. She should run straight to college full-time. Saying that she's still clearly the #2 American lady going forward is not true; with two spots next year and one ostensibly going to Mirai, I don't see Rachael being gifted the PCS to grab the second one with the junior talent coming up-- Gao, Agnes-- and the more naturally talented and potentially higher-scoring Ashley Wagner.
  13. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    You can take internet based classes and even written correspondence, but most view that as not being the same as a "real" classroom based setting.

    With the emphasis Rachel has put on academics, I expect she wants the "real" college experience, and even more likely will have a lab-based major, so she'd need to be in person, regular attendence.

    As for number of classes- some schools require a full load, others will let you just take 1 class at a time and still be degree seeking. I expect the programs she's in expect at least a half-load. She didn't apply to slacker schools
  14. Indra486

    Indra486 Well-Known Member

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    That's something that an individual can opt to. Skaters can choose to do part-time and online classes. I'm not sure how it's done with other schools but in NY public universities, part time is three classes at most (at least one). Regardless of how schools decide what part time is, depending on the graduation requirements, doing part-time will delay graduation because you are taking less class. Colleges usually recommend a minimum of credits to take (full-time) to graduate within the four years; that is if you're intending to seek a degree with a 4yr track.

    However, if you're really hands on with school activities, like Rachael, you can't get the "full" college experience if you're not there attending full time classes and living in the dorms. Both can be important to Rachael; the college experience and competitive skating but balancing them out successfully is a rare feat to accomplish. Deferring is only good for a certain amount of time because the college can choose to withdraw their acceptance for an individual if they keep holding it off.
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2010
  15. loopey

    loopey Well-Known Member

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    Speaking as someone that thoroughly "enjoyed" my college days, it would be pretty hard to balance full time skating, full time studying, and full time socializing. My fear would be that the socializing would not get enough attention. :lol:

    I joke, but college has fond memories. Even all-night study sessions with friends and cold pizza can put a smile on my face. It was a fun time in life!
  16. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to harp on this again, but Rachael still is the most consistent out of the skaters you've mentioned. As far as her scoring, she receives fairly high marks. In fact, she was overscored at nationals, in my opinion. Even though I like Ashley a lot more, Rachael has done much better in competition.

    As far as Gao and Agnes, I definitely think they have the potential to overtake her. But at this time, they don't rank higher than Rachael.
  17. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    I dont think Wagner has yet done anything to prove she is better than Flatt. She could be better than Flatt but hasnt been yet other than the 2008 Nationals where I think Wagner was robbed majorly. Gao is definitely not close to Flatt in ability right now. Agnes has alot of potential but who knows how she will be viewed as a new senior her first year.
  18. Louis

    Louis Tinami 2012

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    Consistency counts for nothing when you have to be perfect to get even a semi-decent place. Rachael cannot afford even the slightest mistake or reduction in content to stay even top six. She is not a "big GOE" skater, and it's not going to be easy for her to become one.

    She skated perfect Olympic programs and ended up 7th. At Worlds, ninth with only one real mistake over both programs. Anyone else with that content in either event would have been on the podium for sure. That's very telling in how the judges perceive her skating overall.

    I've been trying to decide for a couple of years if Rachael was a Sarah Hughes in the making or a Tonia Kwiatkowski in the making. This seals the deal for me; she's a Tonia, the nice, smart girl who can be sent to Worlds if there are no better options, but the girl who's never going to win a medal and will be passed over in a second if a skater with a real chance comes along.

    I like Rachael's skating but don't see much hope in continuing for any reason other than sheer love of the sport.
  19. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    Her Olympic free skate wasn't perfect - two of her jumps were downgraded. At Worlds, she didn't do her planned triple/triple in either program and popped one of her jumps.
  20. BlueRidge

    BlueRidge AYS's snark-sponge

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    Is Agnes expected to skate senior next season? I thought she'd do a year on the JGP?
  21. Dr.Siouxs

    Dr.Siouxs Well-Known Member

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    I would expect her to go for Senior nationals as she's already won Juniors. IIRC, if she's able to qualify for the JGP Final, she automatically secures a berth at Senior nationals. (That's the way it used to be anyway..:shuffle:)
  22. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely Rachael is the most consistent, but the USFSA has no reason to hold her up anymore with PCS marks that she doesn't deserve-- i.e. this year's Nationals. Sure, she can stick around as long as she wants and count the points on the triples (spins aren't good) and do moderately well-- hang around 7th or 6th in the World for the next two years, maybe-- but she's not a champion. She's only a default contender-- other people make a lot of mistakes; she sneaks onto the podium. Her skating skills and PCS marks compared to the other top skaters should be a lot lower if we're being honest which, it seems, the judges certainly have started to do at these Olympics and Worlds. She might even get the second spot at Worlds next year if she continues competing, but USFSA should be pushing future contenders over the next two years. Give the kids the opportunities to gain experience and not hold up with PCS someone like Rachael who isn't headed anywhere. USFSA don't want another quadrennium like this past one.

    I see Rachael as the Emily Hughes of the next four years. (And I love Emily!) I just think moving on to college full-time and having the whole experience when you're actually college-age is a great opportunity for Rachael compared to what competitive skating most likely holds for her over the next four years.
  23. Yazmeen

    Yazmeen Well-Known Member

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    If she is going to continue to skate, she needs to commit to working on her skating fulltime and being something other than "automatic/consistent." Her "consistency" helped here nowhere but Nationals this year, and she is now suffering downgrades on top of the fact that she is about as artistic and exciting as watching paint dry.

    She also needs to to improve her overall look - no, I'm NOT saying she's fat, but between her current body shape and her godawful costume choices, she needs to make some improvements. I skate and I'm in a skating club and have heard many young skaters I skate with express being perplexed as to how, despite her technical prowess, she appears to have little muscle definition (and yes, some of them think she's "fat," which she's not). Basically, when she doesn't hit dead on jumps, she doesn't look good at all. There is some serious reworking needed here. Despite the problems at Worlds, Mirai has sailed past her with her programs and the judges opinions, and if Ashley and others hit their jumps, Rachael will be left in the dust. If she wants to go to college, then good for her, being a National Champion is a great way to go out, but if she wants to continue on the elite level, she has to make some serious changes to be competitive besides having reasonably consistent triples.
  24. Coco

    Coco Well-Known Member

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    It's almost impossible to do this if you are majoring in a science, because of the labwork and the need to take courses in strict order. A lot of them are only offered in either the fall or winter semester, never both (except at massive) universities.

    If she does a liberal art instead, it could work.

    But I think she should have the full freshman experience. Skate or train 10 hours a week for kicks and fitness, but don't compete. Live in the dorm, and be a college student 100% of the time. After that year, see how it goes.

    Heck, she may still be in the top 75 even if she doesn't compete from now until summer of 2011.
  25. silverstars

    silverstars New Member

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    Even with liberal arts, though, it really depends on the school. If she choose a school with a flexible curriculum, then yes. I go to a liberal arts school, though, and we have a very strict set of core requirements that we have to fulfill. A lot of the courses are full-year ones that are taken in a certain order and would be difficult to complete unless you're attending consistently.

    I think that it would be in her best interest to either invest herself fully in school or defer her matriculation. Freshman year is hard enough without trying to keep up a competitive international career, and if academics is as important to her as it seems, I think that having at least part of a typical college experience might be really beneficial to her.
  26. bbtano

    bbtano New Member

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    Rachael is only 17 years old. If she chooses to skate full-time, couldn't she improve and get higher PCS scores?
  27. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

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    Anyway, I think Rachael should think really hard about what she wants to do. Her performance at Worlds was very poor to her standards. It seems like she is starting to have problems with her jumps, but it's not 100% yet (since I don't think she had another good performance left in her after the Olympics... Same for Mirai)... We'll see next season.
  28. loopey

    loopey Well-Known Member

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    Of course she can! I am not sure why so many seem to have given up on her.

    I remember many years ago, many said similar things about Angela Nikodinov. She had bad conditioning, she was not getting the favor of the judges. She needed a new coach, she should retire. She didn't have the consistency of Rachael, but she had great technique and great spins. But many had given up on her. And with the depth of the US ladies at the time many wanted her to go.

    But then she went to a woman coach that she bonded with. She toned her body, grew out and colored her hair, got new costuming, improved her conditioning, got new choreography and had one of the biggest transformations I have ever seen. Voila, the judges and the fans loved her! She turned out to be one of the most gorgeous skaters and remains one of my all time favorites.

    So yes, Rachael can do anything she wants with her skating and with her education, it's her decision and she has to make the right one for her. She is 17, the future is indeed bright whether it's skating or education or both!
  29. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

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    I do find it strange that while Rachael is obviously an elite level athlete, you couldn't tell that she exercise much at all just from looking at her.
  30. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately, I think this is just her body type. Mine is a lot like hers. In addition to eating healthfully, I do several strength training workouts per week, daily cardio, and yoga, but I do not look thin or muscular. Not fat, but just not slim and toned. My sister and some of my friends, however, look a lot better than I do but do less work. Some people are able to tone their bodies much easier than others. It's frustrating and unfair but true.
  31. JJH

    JJH Well-Known Member

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    Flatt is 9 months older than Nagasu and more than a year younger than Wagner. For everyone who thinks that Flatt should quit at 17, do you think that Nagasu should quit next year? Should Wagner have quit last year? Davis and White attend the University of Michigan. Czisny competed while attending and graduating from college. If Rachel wants to continue to skate, I'm certain she's plenty smart enough to figure out how to do it.
  32. Stephanie

    Stephanie Well-Known Member

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    She's guaranteed one senior GP due to her medal at junior worlds (Gao is too due to her JGPF medal), so it's up to her and her coach.
  33. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    Reading comments like the USFSA holding up Flatt anymore makes me laugh. Flatt was robbed of the 2009 National title and she is supposably held up, LOL! Yeah Nagasu got some unfortunate < in the free skate at Nationals, what else is new, every event other than the Olympics this year that has happened to her, so it is not like they went out of their way to pick on her. Nagasu clearly has more potential and that was shown at the Major events this year, but Flatt deserves more than the scathing remarks and over the top criticsm she often seems to get from people. If she does move on to college, she can be proud of her career as a skater. She has been the U.S's most consistent skater for almost 3 years now, performed wonderfully at an Olympics and a couple times at a Worlds (especialy last year), won a well deserved National title and World Junior Gold, and been a class act through it all. If she continues on I think those who are writing her off now will be in for a surprise. I doubt she will overtake Nagasu as the top American again, but she can definitely continue to be a solid skater and improve further, and stay in the mix to represent the U.S at global events.
  34. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

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    Depends on the university. Some will let you attend part-time, others will not. Some will let you go part-time only if you've applied and been accepted into their less-prestigious "continuing education" (adult ed-style) programs, rather than into their main undergraduate colleges.

    It's also the case that not all unis will let you defer for a year.
  35. haribobo

    haribobo Well-Known Member

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    The big difference is that Angela already had the great basic skating when she was with Oppegard. All that was needed with her was a fix in costuming, choreography, and fitness, and she was golden (unfortunately, that was all ruined by subsequent tragedies).

    Rachael could have the world's best choreo and costuming and land all her jumps, but her speed and overall effect still pales miserably in comparison to Lepisto, Kostner, Mao, Yuna, Mirai, Makarova, etc....it seems to me that skaters are kind of stuck at their basic level of skills.....otherwise Rachael and Caroline Zhang would have improved them by now....

    The reason Rachael and Caroline couldn't overtake Alissa at 2009 Nationals is exactly this. Even with all their jumps landed, they were slow and totally unimpressive. Rachael improved her programs this year enough to win Nationals, but someone like Agnes Z or Ashley Wagner could match that level, and the judges at Nationals will be eager for that to happen since Rachael is now 9th in the World and not 5th. Lepisto, Kostner, Nagasu, Phaneuf, and Makarova are just the tip of the iceberg of skaters that have passed Rachael since last year's Worlds (Kostner and Phaneuf have consistency issues, yes. As do Lepisto and Nagasu but their skills are so good they can seem to get away with 3-triple programs and still beat a Rachael) when Murakami, Shelepen, Agafanova, Ovcharova, Zawadzki....come on to the scene, then it will really be tough to even stay in top 10 at Worlds with mediocre skating skills....

    The GP next season should be very interesting and I look forward to some new faces from US and abroad!

    Rachael of course can do whatever she wants and she'll probably be good enough to make Nationals podiums for a few more years if she stays...but I honestly see her going the way of Bebe, Emily, Kimmie, and Alissa...a Kwan or Cohen-like career is not in the cards for her.
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2010
  36. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    As much as I liked Angela's skating (I even liked it before the transformation but loved it after), I dont think the judges ever really liked it that much. She came 3rd in the SP at the 2001 Worlds but with ordinals ranging from 3rd to 8th. She lucked out Butyrskaya had bombed the qualifying and was skating in the earlier flight as I am pretty sure the judges would have put her 3rd or even 2nd in the short with the same performance if she were (as it was Maria's ordinals ranged from 2nd to 7th but she ended up 5th). Still it was nice to see the judges place her over a clean Hughes for once, the only time they ever did that. Too bad she missed the last minute of her otherwise gorgeous free skate and handed Hughes one of her many lucky medals.

    2001 Nationals before that of course she totally outskated Hughes and yet had to settle for 3rd place.

    2002 Nationals she skated a beautiful short program and was placed below Hughes and Cohen. She probably would have missed the Olympic team even with a clean free skate.
  37. mishieru07

    mishieru07 New Member

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    It depends on her major. Since she wants to be a pre-med, I don't see how that works out because they spend an awful amount of time in the lab, which cannot be compensated for by correspondence learning. D/W and Czisny are Arts majors IIRC, and even then D/W took a whole semester off to train for Olympics and Worlds I think. They have a lighter course load than a regular student.

    Didn't Emily Hughes try to balance Harvard and skating? It didn't quite work out. Also, are there any good coaches near the university (whichever she chooses?)
  38. haribobo

    haribobo Well-Known Member

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    I think international judges liked Angela's skating a proper amount in 2001 and after. Sure there were judges who gave her crappy marks/ordinals for that great SP at Worlds but the fact is enough had her high enough to be 3rd, which is good. That was a real breakthrough for her internationally, much as Mirai's 1st in the SP was. If her skating continued to be at that level, she'd have picked up a Worlds medal or two and made the OLY team....but the USFS judges didn't really give her the benefit of the doubt after all the tragedies and problems....she might have made the 2002 OLY team with a flawless skate but its hard to say since she bombed...and was basically never the same after that. :(

    The only time Angela was truly hard-done by judging was 2001 Nationals and that was just a case of Nationals judges not trusting Angela after years of mediocre results vs. the very dependable rising star Sarah. Sarah didn't exactly bomb that year anyway- so it was a close call for them (not for me cause Angela was so diviiiiine)
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2010
  39. Jaana

    Jaana Well-Known Member

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    I think that it would be better for her to concentrate on her studies and feel happy about what she has accomplished in her skating. Yes, she is a consinstent skater, but unfortunately she does not have the look and even less the bodytype.
  40. euterpe

    euterpe Well-Known Member

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    Rachael's juggled school and skating for the past 4 years, and I believe when she starts college, she knows she won't be able to do that without slacking off in the skating department---much like Emily Hughes.

    So if she decides to defer college for one year, it will be with an eye to seeing how much she can improve her skating if she gives it 100% of her attention. After all, Paul Wylie never succeeded internationally until the year AFTER he graduated from Harvard.

    I think Rachael's skating suffered a bit this season due to the fact this was her Senior year in high school, with all the social and academic events that go with that. She peaked at Nationals and never quite made it back to that level at Olympics and Worlds.

    I'd be interested to see how she does with concentrating on skating for a year. If that's what she chooses to do. I know she will be successful in her college career for sure.