Familiar Faces, Less Familiar Colors


Trevor Van Ackeren photographed by Kyle Merber (who got a camera)

When I worked at the League office, I remember hating the ‘no-graduate-students’ rule. I didn’t like that someone would have to slow their rate of academic progress or represent another school if they happened to get hurt.

I think I was mostly annoyed at the case of Anna Pierce, who became a star at Michigan in her only season there. Thus people far and wide referred to her as a Wolverine, when we all know she is a Brown Bear.

Over time, I have learned to celebrate the quirk that puts our League’s stars in different uniforms for a year, be it a Longhorn, a Hoya, a Cav, a Vol, a Duck, a Hoosier or a Badger.

Today the Daily Princetonian’s Adam Fisch explored the ever-growing trend and got some insight from my former co-worker Carolyn Campbell-McGovern, who among other things oversees rules, eligibility and such. She has been at the League office for 20 years and they are very, very lucky to have her wisdom and passion for the students.

“The history of that rule is that the presidents believe that intercollegiate athletics is an undergraduate activity. It’s as straightforward as that,” she told Fisch. “Under NCAA rules, if you haven’t played for whatever reason, then you haven’t played. Under Ivy League rules, you’re expected to play and use a season if you are on campus.”

That growing number of former Ivies competing elsewhere as graduate students shows that, in track, that isn’t always happening. When Kyle Merber cut his foot on a bottle before his junior year, he have had to drop out of school for a year to maintain his eligibility. And then there are those like Princeton’s Joe Stilin, whose improvement last spring helped him decide to attend graduate school at the University of Texas and run — with Merber — for the Longhorns.

Those are two of the 10 folks we know about entering the indoor season. We suspect there are others and we hope you let us know who we missed. Here is who we have:

Mark Amirault — Virginia (Princeton)
Adam Benhke — Indiana (Columbia)
Tyler King — Boston College (Princeton)
Brian Leung — Wisconsin (Princeton)
Dan Lowry — Michigan (Brown)
Kyle Merber — Texas (Columbia)
Matt Miner — Oregon (Dartmouth
Alexi Pappas — Oregon (Dartmouth)
Joe Stilin — Texas (Princeton)
Trevor Van Ackeren — Texas (Princeton)

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