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Search Begins For Tomorrow's Elite Student Athletes

By RENALDO DORSETT Sports Reporter rdorsett@tribunemedia.net IN AN effort to build upon the foundation of a fairly new yet relatively successful athletic program, the College of the Bahamas will continue its search for elite student athletes. COB's Athletic Department will host open tryouts for 11th and 12th grade students throughout the country looking to earn a roster spot in a trio of sports, Saturday, January 21st. At 10am on the COB Courts, tryouts begin for men and women's basketball teams as well as the women's volleyball team. At 12pm, attention shifts to the COB Soccer Field when the women's soccer team hosts their tryouts followed by the men's soccer team at 1pm. Kimberly Rolle, director of athletics at COB, said parents, students and coaches should see the college as a viable option to further both their athletic and academic careers. "We are in the middle of the track and field season and we just wanted to make the point during the height of the season that the COB programme is a viable option for high school student athletes. "This weekend is one of the major meets where there will be a large number of high school student athletes which will converge on the Thomas A Robinson Stadium. There will be colleges there recruiting student athletes and you can be assured that the COB will have a presence there this weekend," she said. "We are a viable option for both students' academic and athletic career. COB provides a sound academic environment and it provides an opportunity for students to pursue a very aggressive and successful athletic career." Rolle said that while it is good for student athletes to aim towards lofty goals, coaches and parents should help them to explore all options. "Not all of our athletes will be at the Division I or Division II level but there is keen competition at the NAIA level. We want parents, coaches and student athletes in particular to know that the COB athletic programme is growing, it's thriving and it's a viable option," she said. "Too often we see where student athletes and coaches place all of their eggs in one basket as coaches we see in August, students knock on our door seeking admission but they did not think sufficiently enough to place an application in February or March." Bradley Cooper, head track and field coach at COB, said the growth of the programme over the last few years has indicated its potential to grow even further with its recruiting programme. "The programme at COB has advanced a great deal over the last three to four years. We started with just six athletes traveling and competing and we were laughed at initially, but we soon started to get respect from the schools and coaches around," he said. "We are traveling to meets in the states, we have competed at the University of Central Florida, Florida State and at FamU (Florida A & M). The programme landed 2009 Carifta triple jump silver medallist Tamara Myers, pictured, a native of Exuma, which Cooper insists is the calibre of athlete the programme can attract. Financial aid will be avalable to student athletes that meet the varying requirements. Prospects seeking additional information can call the AD at 302-4349 or email athletics@cob.edu.bs.

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