US college coach, Micky Blythe’s take on international student-athletes - NSR Australia

There is a lot involved with being a college student-athlete, particularly so with being one as an international student.

Micky BlytheForeign students wanting to study and play sport overseas can find themselves in one of the most highly-regarded positions a university student can possibly be; becoming a student-athlete.

However, this title is one that must be earned and respected, something that Medaille College soccer coach, Micky Blythe, promotes.

Micky, an English-born footballer, has been at Medaille for a year and is taking all measures possible to implement a positive athletic environment of hard-work, dedication and respect at Medaille.

Having run into some undesirable qualities amongst some of his original athletes, Micky cast the net wider and decided to pursue recruitment of international athletes to create the sporting environment he was looking for as a coach.

Micky has since recruited three NSR soccer athletes to join the Medaille Mavericks; Sam Beesley, Dominic Jones and Anthony Marafioti, and is looking to add more talented NSR recruits to both his men’s and women’s teams.

Micky values the appreciation international student-athletes have for the opportunity they have been given and notes the benefit Sam Beesley brings to his squad-as an older athlete than most college recruits-at 23.

“It’s great to have someone that’s 23 in the program, the level of maturity…Medaille is commenting on how well these lads are carrying themselves. Compared to American 18 year olds, there’s a maturity there. They’re well noticed.

“The student athletes are high profile and the Aussies are loving it, they’re good lads,” Micky said.

 

Settling in and the support network

Although Micky admits it’s not easy for an international student to settle in on the other side of the world and begin a new life, he notes the best way to do this is to throw yourself into everything and let things unfold.

Supportive yet stern, the Medaille coach mentioned that the ability to make things happen for yourself and to challenge yourself in a foreign environment is a desirable quality in an international recruit.

The collegiate system is adapted well for student-athletes to continue to maintain a successful balance of sport and study.

“I oversee a number of policies that we have that keep the student athletes in good standing as an athlete. We have a number of policies to make sure they’re actually probably doing more than what a normal student would do,” Micky said.

With two three-hour compulsory study halls during the week, student-athletes at Medaille college are organised in a way that promotes success and doesn’t allow failure.

With a well-balanced teacher-to-student ratio, small classes and plenty of academic advisors, Micky notes there is every opportunity for student-athletes to make sure they are performing on and off the field, but advises students to still understand the work required and individual effort necessary to maintain this.

“You’ve got to really work hard to be honest though. If you’re not committing to all that, you will stick out. You can have a great life over here as a student athlete, but if you are not faring off the field then you will get micromanaged,” the Mavericks coach said.

 

What a college coach is looking for

The opinion of a college coach is highly valued and respected in the college community, particularly for student-athletes who are intent on paving a future path as a collegiate athlete.

As a seasoned coach and professional with over 8 years of coaching experience at the NPSL, NCAA DII, NJCAA DI, and Hull City AFC premier soccer level in England, Micky’s opinion is extremely valuable to a young international college hopeful.

Micky also has proven success with international recruiting and playing experience at Hull City AFC and Mercyhurst University, making him an expert on the topic.

While the Mavericks coach looks for great quality players, he notes that you don’t necessarily have to be an elite athlete to obtain an incredible college opportunity.

“You don’t have to be perfect by any stretch of the imagination. You need to love the sport. You need to understand that being a student-athlete is very prestigious, that it can be taken away from you,” he said.

Micky specifically noted how valued student-athletes are and said he looked for student-athletes who would proudly uphold the honour of the title.

“It’s a great experience and being a student-athlete at Medaille is a very prestigious thing. Once you graduate you’re laughing. It’s not something that should be taken lightly. Don’t think it’s easy, but the rewards are massive, they’re unbelievable. The life skills, it’s a bit cliché but I want people to really want it, to be really hungry to do well.

“Student-athletes are the leaders of campus, they’re the ones on the website, they’re the ones in the classroom representing the college. They really are looked up to in the American college society,” the respected coach noted.

As much as college coaches look for talented young athletes, Micky acknowledged that he values players that can present their qualities yet still identify their athletic weaknesses and be realistic about their level of play.

“Tell me what your strengths are and be honest about your weaknesses, I want them to be willing to learn. Have some ability with the ball, absolutely. I can help you with the football, I’m big on development. I want people here who want to play, compete and do well,” Micky said.

 

Micky’s advice for student-athletes

As an experienced player, coach, recruiter and college figure, Micky Blythe knows exactly what qualities he is looking for and what it takes to be a Medaille Maverick.

His best advice for presenting yourself in the most positive light to colleges and coaches is simple; be open-minded, be honest and realistic with your coach, and do your research.

“Keep an open mind. If you invest your time and you invest yourself, you will be okay,” he said.

“My advice would be to go in completely open. We go into preseason before classes start anyway so we kind of prepare the lads for what to expect in the classroom a little bit when they get here.”

The Medaille Mavericks coach has no time or energy for students with a sense of entitlement or privilege, and encourages all student-athletes to be modest and to appreciate and value the opportunity put before them.

“People have delusions of grandeur, I think there’s a program out there for everyone and not everyone should be going to the same one.”

Finally, research and a level of understanding of the college pathway was essential for Micky.

“Do some research on it yourself. If you’re going to speak to a coach make sure you know their name, make sure you know the program and the background of the school,” he said.

 

Micky will be looking for more NSR athletes to join his men’s and women’s teams in the future, and is excited by the chance to add some more international flair to his squads and see the benefits the student-athletes reap from the US college pathway.

“It’ll be a culture shock but they’re going to take to you well, they’re going to like you being there. You’re going to be a positive member of the campus!” he said.

 

 

There is a lot involved with being a college student-athlete, particularly so with being one as an international student.

Micky BlytheForeign students wanting to study and play sport overseas can find themselves in one of the most highly-regarded positions a university student can possibly be; becoming a student-athlete.

However, this title is one that must be earned and respected, something that Medaille College soccer coach, Micky Blythe, promotes.

Micky, an English-born footballer, has been at Medaille for a year and is taking all measures possible to implement a positive athletic environment of hard-work, dedication and respect at Medaille.

Having run into some undesirable qualities amongst some of his original athletes, Micky cast the net wider and decided to pursue recruitment of international athletes to create the sporting environment he was looking for as a coach.

Micky has since recruited three NSR soccer athletes to join the Medaille Mavericks; Sam Beesley, Dominic Jones and Anthony Marafioti, and is looking to add more talented NSR recruits to both his men’s and women’s teams.

Micky values the appreciation international student-athletes have for the opportunity they have been given and notes the benefit Sam Beesley brings to his squad-as an older athlete than most college recruits-at 23.

“It’s great to have someone that’s 23 in the program, the level of maturity…Medaille is commenting on how well these lads are carrying themselves. Compared to American 18 year olds, there’s a maturity there. They’re well noticed.

“The student athletes are high profile and the Aussies are loving it, they’re good lads,” Micky said.

 

Settling in and the support network

Although Micky admits it’s not easy for an international student to settle in on the other side of the world and begin a new life, he notes the best way to do this is to throw yourself into everything and let things unfold.

Supportive yet stern, the Medaille coach mentioned that the ability to make things happen for yourself and to challenge yourself in a foreign environment is a desirable quality in an international recruit.

The collegiate system is adapted well for student-athletes to continue to maintain a successful balance of sport and study.

“I oversee a number of policies that we have that keep the student athletes in good standing as an athlete. We have a number of policies to make sure they’re actually probably doing more than what a normal student would do,” Micky said.

With two three-hour compulsory study halls during the week, student-athletes at Medaille college are organised in a way that promotes success and doesn’t allow failure.

With a well-balanced teacher-to-student ratio, small classes and plenty of academic advisors, Micky notes there is every opportunity for student-athletes to make sure they are performing on and off the field, but advises students to still understand the work required and individual effort necessary to maintain this.

“You’ve got to really work hard to be honest though. If you’re not committing to all that, you will stick out. You can have a great life over here as a student athlete, but if you are not faring off the field then you will get micromanaged,” the Mavericks coach said.

 

What a college coach is looking for

The opinion of a college coach is highly valued and respected in the college community, particularly for student-athletes who are intent on paving a future path as a collegiate athlete.

As a seasoned coach and professional with over 8 years of coaching experience at the NPSL, NCAA DII, NJCAA DI, and Hull City AFC premier soccer level in England, Micky’s opinion is extremely valuable to a young international college hopeful.

Micky also has proven success with international recruiting and playing experience at Hull City AFC and Mercyhurst University, making him an expert on the topic.

While the Mavericks coach looks for great quality players, he notes that you don’t necessarily have to be an elite athlete to obtain an incredible college opportunity.

“You don’t have to be perfect by any stretch of the imagination. You need to love the sport. You need to understand that being a student-athlete is very prestigious, that it can be taken away from you,” he said.

Micky specifically noted how valued student-athletes are and said he looked for student-athletes who would proudly uphold the honour of the title.

“It’s a great experience and being a student-athlete at Medaille is a very prestigious thing. Once you graduate you’re laughing. It’s not something that should be taken lightly. Don’t think it’s easy, but the rewards are massive, they’re unbelievable. The life skills, it’s a bit cliché but I want people to really want it, to be really hungry to do well.

“Student-athletes are the leaders of campus, they’re the ones on the website, they’re the ones in the classroom representing the college. They really are looked up to in the American college society,” the respected coach noted.

As much as college coaches look for talented young athletes, Micky acknowledged that he values players that can present their qualities yet still identify their athletic weaknesses and be realistic about their level of play.

“Tell me what your strengths are and be honest about your weaknesses, I want them to be willing to learn. Have some ability with the ball, absolutely. I can help you with the football, I’m big on development. I want people here who want to play, compete and do well,” Micky said.

 

Micky’s advice for student-athletes

As an experienced player, coach, recruiter and college figure, Micky Blythe knows exactly what qualities he is looking for and what it takes to be a Medaille Maverick.

His best advice for presenting yourself in the most positive light to colleges and coaches is simple; be open-minded, be honest and realistic with your coach, and do your research.

“Keep an open mind. If you invest your time and you invest yourself, you will be okay,” he said.

“My advice would be to go in completely open. We go into preseason before classes start anyway so we kind of prepare the lads for what to expect in the classroom a little bit when they get here.”

The Medaille Mavericks coach has no time or energy for students with a sense of entitlement or privilege, and encourages all student-athletes to be modest and to appreciate and value the opportunity put before them.

“People have delusions of grandeur, I think there’s a program out there for everyone and not everyone should be going to the same one.”

Finally, research and a level of understanding of the college pathway was essential for Micky.

“Do some research on it yourself. If you’re going to speak to a coach make sure you know their name, make sure you know the program and the background of the school,” he said.

 

Micky will be looking for more NSR athletes to join his men’s and women’s teams in the future, and is excited by the chance to add some more international flair to his squads and see the benefits the student-athletes reap from the US college pathway.

“It’ll be a culture shock but they’re going to take to you well, they’re going to like you being there. You’re going to be a positive member of the campus!” he said.

 

 

There is a lot involved with being a college student-athlete, particularly so with being one as an international student.

Micky BlytheForeign students wanting to study and play sport overseas can find themselves in one of the most highly-regarded positions a university student can possibly be; becoming a student-athlete.

However, this title is one that must be earned and respected, something that Medaille College soccer coach, Micky Blythe, promotes.

Micky, an English-born footballer, has been at Medaille for a year and is taking all measures possible to implement a positive athletic environment of hard-work, dedication and respect at Medaille.

Having run into some undesirable qualities amongst some of his original athletes, Micky cast the net wider and decided to pursue recruitment of international athletes to create the sporting environment he was looking for as a coach.

Micky has since recruited three NSR soccer athletes to join the Medaille Mavericks; Sam Beesley, Dominic Jones and Anthony Marafioti, and is looking to add more talented NSR recruits to both his men’s and women’s teams.

Micky values the appreciation international student-athletes have for the opportunity they have been given and notes the benefit Sam Beesley brings to his squad-as an older athlete than most college recruits-at 23.

“It’s great to have someone that’s 23 in the program, the level of maturity…Medaille is commenting on how well these lads are carrying themselves. Compared to American 18 year olds, there’s a maturity there. They’re well noticed.

“The student athletes are high profile and the Aussies are loving it, they’re good lads,” Micky said.

 

Settling in and the support network

Although Micky admits it’s not easy for an international student to settle in on the other side of the world and begin a new life, he notes the best way to do this is to throw yourself into everything and let things unfold.

Supportive yet stern, the Medaille coach mentioned that the ability to make things happen for yourself and to challenge yourself in a foreign environment is a desirable quality in an international recruit.

The collegiate system is adapted well for student-athletes to continue to maintain a successful balance of sport and study.

“I oversee a number of policies that we have that keep the student athletes in good standing as an athlete. We have a number of policies to make sure they’re actually probably doing more than what a normal student would do,” Micky said.

With two three-hour compulsory study halls during the week, student-athletes at Medaille college are organised in a way that promotes success and doesn’t allow failure.

With a well-balanced teacher-to-student ratio, small classes and plenty of academic advisors, Micky notes there is every opportunity for student-athletes to make sure they are performing on and off the field, but advises students to still understand the work required and individual effort necessary to maintain this.

“You’ve got to really work hard to be honest though. If you’re not committing to all that, you will stick out. You can have a great life over here as a student athlete, but if you are not faring off the field then you will get micromanaged,” the Mavericks coach said.

 

What a college coach is looking for

The opinion of a college coach is highly valued and respected in the college community, particularly for student-athletes who are intent on paving a future path as a collegiate athlete.

As a seasoned coach and professional with over 8 years of coaching experience at the NPSL, NCAA DII, NJCAA DI, and Hull City AFC premier soccer level in England, Micky’s opinion is extremely valuable to a young international college hopeful.

Micky also has proven success with international recruiting and playing experience at Hull City AFC and Mercyhurst University, making him an expert on the topic.

While the Mavericks coach looks for great quality players, he notes that you don’t necessarily have to be an elite athlete to obtain an incredible college opportunity.

“You don’t have to be perfect by any stretch of the imagination. You need to love the sport. You need to understand that being a student-athlete is very prestigious, that it can be taken away from you,” he said.

Micky specifically noted how valued student-athletes are and said he looked for student-athletes who would proudly uphold the honour of the title.

“It’s a great experience and being a student-athlete at Medaille is a very prestigious thing. Once you graduate you’re laughing. It’s not something that should be taken lightly. Don’t think it’s easy, but the rewards are massive, they’re unbelievable. The life skills, it’s a bit cliché but I want people to really want it, to be really hungry to do well.

“Student-athletes are the leaders of campus, they’re the ones on the website, they’re the ones in the classroom representing the college. They really are looked up to in the American college society,” the respected coach noted.

As much as college coaches look for talented young athletes, Micky acknowledged that he values players that can present their qualities yet still identify their athletic weaknesses and be realistic about their level of play.

“Tell me what your strengths are and be honest about your weaknesses, I want them to be willing to learn. Have some ability with the ball, absolutely. I can help you with the football, I’m big on development. I want people here who want to play, compete and do well,” Micky said.

 

Micky’s advice for student-athletes

As an experienced player, coach, recruiter and college figure, Micky Blythe knows exactly what qualities he is looking for and what it takes to be a Medaille Maverick.

His best advice for presenting yourself in the most positive light to colleges and coaches is simple; be open-minded, be honest and realistic with your coach, and do your research.

“Keep an open mind. If you invest your time and you invest yourself, you will be okay,” he said.

“My advice would be to go in completely open. We go into preseason before classes start anyway so we kind of prepare the lads for what to expect in the classroom a little bit when they get here.”

The Medaille Mavericks coach has no time or energy for students with a sense of entitlement or privilege, and encourages all student-athletes to be modest and to appreciate and value the opportunity put before them.

“People have delusions of grandeur, I think there’s a program out there for everyone and not everyone should be going to the same one.”

Finally, research and a level of understanding of the college pathway was essential for Micky.

“Do some research on it yourself. If you’re going to speak to a coach make sure you know their name, make sure you know the program and the background of the school,” he said.

 

Micky will be looking for more NSR athletes to join his men’s and women’s teams in the future, and is excited by the chance to add some more international flair to his squads and see the benefits the student-athletes reap from the US college pathway.

“It’ll be a culture shock but they’re going to take to you well, they’re going to like you being there. You’re going to be a positive member of the campus!” he said.