2017 NEPSAC AA Saylor Points

As promised, we wanted to follow up on the Saylor Points that we alluded to in the last post.  Vermont Academy took care of business and had another undefeated week. Go VA! 

So, if you follow prep school basketball at the Class AA level, you may have heard of the Saylor Ranking System. While many basketball enthusiasts have heard this terminology, very few understand exactly how it works.  Here is a look at the system's breakdown:

Category 1 is against Class AAA teams with a win/loss percentage above 75%.

A win against Category 1 gives you 600 points, and a loss gives you 200 points.

Category 2 is against Class AAA teams with a win/loss percentage above 50% and below 75% OR against Class AA programs with a win/loss percentage above 75%.

A win against Category 2 gives you 500 points, and a loss gives you 150 points.

Category 3 is against Class AAA teams with a win/loss percentage above 25% and below 50% OR against Class AA programs with a win/loss percentage above 50% and below 75% OR Class A team with a win/loss percentage above 75%. 

A win against Category 3 gives you 400 points, and a loss gives you 100 points.

Category 4 is against Class AA programs with a win/loss percentage below 25% OR Class AA above 25% and below 50%.

A win against Category 4 gives you 300 points, and a loss gives you 50 points.

Category 5 is against Class AA programs with a win/loss percentage under 25% OR Class A teams with a win/loss percentage under 50% and above 25% OR Class B teams with a win/loss percentage over 50% and under 75%.

A win against Category 5 gives you 200 points and 0 for a loss.

Category 6 is against Class A with a win/loss percentage under 25% OR Class B below 50% and above 25%.

A win against Category 6 gives you 100 points and 0 for a loss.

Category 7 is against Class B programs with a win/loss percentage under 25%.

These wins give you 50 points and 0 for a loss. 

Now that we got through that, here are the calculations for the top 3 programs.

Tilton School: 13-3 in NEPSAC AA and 3-4 in NEPSAC AAA

Total Saylor Points: 7700/25 = 308 (average)

Head to Head--> Tilton defeated Vermont at home, but lost at Cushing.

Vermont Academy: 12-3 in NEPSAC AA and 3-3 in NEPSAC AAA

Total Saylor Points: 6750/22 = 306.8 (average)

Head to Head--> Vermont defeated Cushing at home, but lost at Tilton.

Cushing Academy: 10-1 in NEPSAC AA and 2-2 in NEPSAC AAA

Total Saylor Points: 6300/21= 300 (average)

Head to Head--> Cushing defeated Tilton at home, but lost at Vermont. 

3 NEPSAC AA games under the committee rule minimum of 14.


Here is what was reported for points by the selection committee of St. Andrew's, Gould, MacDuffie, and Worcester: 

Tilton 310

Cushing 300

Vermont 300

Proctor 280

Cheshire 267

St. Andrew's 244

Lawrence 205

Gould 180

MacDuffie 175

Now, we were told that Cushing received the 1 seed because they beat Tilton. The top 3 teams all went 1-1 against each other.  Tilton finished with 308 points, while Vermont had 307 points, and Cushing at 300 points. Tilton's score was rounded up 2 points and Vermont was rounded down 6.8 points, and Cushing stayed as is. 

It's also worth understanding that MacDuffie and Gould didn't get into the tournament because they were below .500, and the rule is pretty firm on this. However, the Class AA minimum for games is 14 and we have consistently had teams under this number. We find it fascinating that one rule for the tournament is enforced while another is not.  

Let's put the analytics away now because the New England Tournament starts on March 1 and here are the pairings! 

#1 Cushing received a BYE.

#2 Tilton will host #7 Lawrence Academy (the teams split in the regular season).

#3 Vermont will host #6 St. Andrew's (their regular season game at St. Andrew's was cancelled due to a St. Andrew's snow day)

#4 Proctor will play #5 Cheshire at Cushing Academy (these teams did not play in the regular season)

Semifinal games will be hosted by the higher seeds on Saturday and the Championship will be played in Providence, RI on Sunday. 

It's time to toss out the records, everyone is 0-0 in the tournament. It should be a great week of basketball and we are elated to be participating in it for the 7th year in a row. 

Go VA! 



One Final Week of NEPSAC AA Resume Building

For basketball tournament selection committees, it can be difficult to differentiate resumes, and this year in NEPSAC AA it appears to be no different.

Seven of 16 teams are a lock to play in March. The top seven programs are Vermont Academy, St. Andrew's, Cushing, Proctor, Tilton, Cheshire, and Lawrence.  All of these schools will play either two or three games this week (2/20-2/26). Here is a look the current playoff picture: 

Cheshire has a 10-4 record in Class AA, and they're 2-1 against Class AAA. They went 4-0 against Classes A and B. 

Proctor has a 12-3 record in Class AA, and they're 1-2 against Class AAA.  The AAA win came against a sub .500 club, which is taken into account by the selection committee. They went 2-0 against lower Class schools.

Tilton has a 11-3 record in Class AA, and they're 3-3 against Class AAA.  They went 2-0 against Classes A and B.  They host Brewster and Proctor this week. Both games will have impact.

St. Andrew's has a 8-3 record in Class AA.  They're 0-4 vs. Class AAA, and 7-1 against Classes A and B. Recent wins against Proctor and at MacDuffie were critical.

Vermont Academy has arguably the best strength of schedule in Class AA, and they are finally playing with a healthy roster. The Wildcats are 10-3 in Class AA, 3-3 against Class AAA and 1-0 against Class A. The pre-season favorite could be seeded anywhere from 1 to 5. Recent wins over NMH and Cushing will certainly help their cause. 

Cushing is 8-1 in NEPSAC AA, 2-2 in NEPSAC AAA, and 6-0 against both Classes A and B. Cushing's only loss in Class AA is to Vermont Academy. 

Lawrence is 8-4 in NEPSAC AA, 0-1 in AAA, and 9-4 in both Classes A and B. LA's scheduling is annually restricted by the ISL. They will most likely have the 7 seed according to the committee. Lawrence has proved that they belong with the big boys, and they're a well coached unit.  

In our next post, we will explain the Sailor Points system. But for now, marinate on the information above. we know you won't envy the tournament selection committee.  Enjoy the NBA All-Star Game!




Getting to Prep School

Everybody wants to play prep school basketball, but very few realize what the coaches are looking for.

Here are a few ways to help differentiate from the rest of the talent pool:

1.       Take care of your academics! The higher the GPA, the better your chances are of landing at a prestigious New England Prep School.

2.       Thousands of young basketball players want to attend prep school, and in reality, the coaches can be picky. Recruit the programs that you like with urgency: visit the campus, finish the application early, and communicate with their coaching staff.

3.       Don’t rely on the postgraduate option to make your move.  Very few prep schools prefer postgraduates. In reality, the top prep basketball programs prefer to have student-athletes for multiple years.  Bruce Brown ’16 was at Vermont Academy for three years, and it gave him significant experience while providing continuity to the program and school.

4.       Do your homework prior to the campus visit. If you’re a basketball prospect, then you most likely know that Vermont Academy won the NEPSAC Championship in 2016 and that our recent matriculation list includes Harvard, Wake Forest, Miami, Xavier, Carnegie Mellon, Colby, UVM, Butler, Louisville, etc. But, it would be even more impressive if you knew about M.A.P.S. and what the Core Beliefs are!

5.       Use your resources. We want to know what type of work ethic and character you have. If we hear glowing reviews from credible sources, it will strengthen our perception of you. 

NBA Draft Analytics

Winning Matters 

NBA Draft Analytics from 2013-2016

  • 181 College players were drafted
  • 78.4% of Draftees Played in NCAA Tournament
  • 57.4% won at least one game in NCAAs
  • Only four players drafted played for a losing team
  • Only eight of 48 college lottery picks did not play in the NCAA tournament
  • Only 11 of the 181 players had transferred
  • Of those 11, only one was a first round pick (Rodney Hood)

10 Paramount Questions for the College Selection Process

Here is what every student-athlete needs to consider when making this critical decision:

1.       Could you picture yourself happy at the institution if you had an injury?

2.       What is their alumni network like?

3.       Do they have your preferred major?

4.       What is the current trend of their coaching staff/program?

5.       At the college level, the facilities tell a story: are they invested to this program?

6.       What is your current relationship/trust level with the coaching staff?

7.       Does location and size play a role in the decision? It’s often easier to discover what you don’t want versus what you do want in the process. 

8.       Are you genuinely interested? The second best answer these college recruiters can hear is no.

9.       Does their style of play suit your strengths and weaknesses?

10.   Will you be in a position to be successful upon graduation from the school?



Vermont Academy Placement + Preparation

Track record for college placement has been outstanding here at the Academy. Our student-athletes are going to impressive colleges and they are doing well when they get there!

Class of 2015

Corey Johnson (Harvard) *

Ronnie Suggs (Bradley)*

Jimmer Fritzson (Rhode Island)*

Samuel Japhet-Mathias (Wake Forest)

*Denotes Started as Freshman

Class of 2016

Bruce Brown (Miami)

Tyrique Jones (Xavier)

Patrick Fisher (Winthrop)

Tinga Adiang (St. Lawrence)

Nicholas Brooks (WV Wesleyan)

David Huber (Carnegie Mellon)

Class of 2017

Marcus Santos-Silva (Virginia Commonwealth University)

Christian David (Butler)

Jordan Nwora (Louisville)

Bailey Patella (University of Vermont)

Corey Romich (Jacksonville)

and more to come...

Go VA!


Vermont Academy Chocolate Milk

Here at Vermont Academy, we have the best chocolate milk on the planet. As a community, we consume 120 gallons of chocolate milk per week.  

Got to love a Vermont cow.

Here is why it's beneficial for our student-athletes: 


When you complete any endurance exercise – whether it’s an intense workout or a game – you need to re-hydrate your body with essential nutrients lost through sweat. Chocolate milk is a better choice than a sports drink or water. Milk has a good supply of electrolytes such as sodium, potassium and other minerals – all of which you lose through sweat. 


After a workout, you need to consume some protein alongside carbohydrates to help repair any micro-tears that occur in muscles during the workout and restore energy. Chocolate milk is a good source of both. The naturally occurring mix of protein and carbs offers many benefits for athletes, says Dr. John Ivy, lead researcher on the studies and chair of The University of Texas at Austin College of Education’s Department of Kinesiology and Health Education.

Improved Performance

A study in a 2011 issue of “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research” found that college athletes who drank chocolate milk between morning and afternoon workouts could perform longer before becoming fatigued compared to players who drank a sports drink.

Upcoming Official Visits for Vermont Academy 2017s

Bailey Patella '17 will officially visit Jacksonville University September 1-3. 

Marcus Santos-Silva '17 will officially visit Temple September 1-3.

Christian David '17 has officially visited Creighton and Butler. He will officially visit Pittsburgh September 2-4.

Kendrick Gray '17 will officially visit Youngstown State August 31-September 2.

We will have open gym on September 9th at 6 AM. Go VA! 


Why Vermont Academy?

By Will Brady '17 (Ridgefield, Connecticut)

Why I Chose VA:
Towards the end of my junior year of high school, I began to seriously think about attending prep school for basketball. Originally, I had planned to graduate from my public high school in Connecticut and then find a school for a postgraduate season before heading off to
college. However, when Coach Popp approached me about repeating my junior year and spending two years at Vermont Academy, I jumped at the opportunity. Vermont Academy not only offered a school with a solid academic reputation, something that was very important to me and my family, but it also presented the chance to join an up and coming basketball program coming off the best year in school history in the best prep league in the country. For me, the decision ended up being an easy one, as VA had everything I could possibly want out of a school. In my first year at VA, I was challenged both on and off the court, but ultimately my teammates and I received the ultimate reward - a NEPSAC AA championship trophy to bring back to campus - the first in school history. Vermont Academy also allowed me to be a part of an extremely tight-knit community as I formed incredible relationships with everyone from my teammates and coaches to teachers and school administrators. I have been thrilled with my decision to attend Vermont Academy thus far, and I can’t wait for my senior year and life after as a Vermont Academy basketball alumni. Go VA!

Reflections after Camp

Top 10 Reasons why the Vermont Academy Basketball Camp was Successful

10. Our campers chanted Marcus is "overrated", all week long.  This was in reaction to the well deserved recruitment that Marcus Santos-Silva '17 is experiencing.  It was all in good fun.

9. Corey Romich '17 displayed unrivaled leadership all week long. The 2016-2017 Captain is a class act and we are lucky to have him in our community.

8. Matt Hanna '17 brings a winning pedigree to the table. The 2015-2016 Boston Globe State Player of the Year was tremendous at demonstrating drills throughout the week.

7. Jon Lyons '18 wants to be great.  He was on the shooting gun all week.

6. Connor Merrill '11 stopped by camp to reconnect with the program after his summer with Hoop Group.  The former VA player and coach will be coaching at the collegiate level this winter.

5. Aurdric Sandoval '18 keeps the mood light. This will prove to be invaluable when we taste adversity this season.

4. We have the best assistant coaches in the NEPSAC.  Casey Cota '89, Josh Cabrera, and Matt Elkin are all really good at what they do. 

3. Vermont loves the game of basketball. This was proved by the overall enthusiasm from our campers.

2. Will Brady '17 was in mid-season form with his preparation and mindset. He is a man on a mission. 

1. It was fun. Everyone involved had a great time! Even Mr. Serious (Bailey Patella '17) enjoyed the entire week.