* CBA sophomore Joe Barrett in an XC race in 2022
Photo Credit: Tom Smith/New Jersey MileSplit
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If you've been around cross country, and specifically around cross country coaches, long enough you may have heard the phrase:
If only I had more kids.
It's true, enrollment does play a difference in how teams are shaped in small and big ways. It doesn't matter where you go. The benefits of high enrollment might allow for a team to have access to an athlete who wouldn't otherwise have considered a sport like cross country. And likewise, small enrollment can sometimes place athletes in sports they may not be generally ideal for.
Enrollment was something Episcopal Academy sprint coach Matthew Davis had been thinking about for some time. Recently, the team's boys XC team qualified for Team Nationals with their second-place finish at the Team Northeast Regional at Bowdoin Park in New York.
The Episcopal Academy, located just west of Philadelphia in Newtown Square, has an enrollment of just 539.
And yet, that didn't prevent the team, which is coached by Jim Farrell, from qualifying for one of the nation's prestigious races.
He went further with that thought and dug up how other qualifying teams, and those just outside on the bubble, stack up comparably.
These numbers ultimately show which teams punch above their weight in XC.
His figures are below:
|Newbury Park (CA)||2,338||CA||1|
|American Fork (UT)||2,410||SW||1|
|Hinsdale Central (IL)||2,613||MW||1|
|Southlake Carroll (TX)||2,795||S||1|
- Christian Brothers Academy, an all-boys prep school in Lincroft, New Jersey, only has 950 students, but it also has no football team and offers fall sports like sailing, cross country and soccer. The XC program has a distinguished pedigree.
- Wayzata, with just over 3,500 students across its public high school, has the largest enrollment among in these figures.
- American Fork's numbers only account for grades 10-12
- Southlake Carroll's high schools are broken up between grades 9-10 and 11-12.
|Episcopal Academy (PA)||539||NE||2|
|Belen Jesuit (FL)||821||SE||2|
|Stevens Point (WI)||1,463||HL||2|
|St. Anthony's (NY)||2,384||NY||2|
|Plainfield South (IL)||2,421||MW||2|
|Great Oak (CA)||3,158||CA||2|
- Like American Fork, Stevens Point's high school accounts for grades 10-12
- Herriman, as with American Fork and Stevens Point, accounts for grades 10-12
- Great Oak, with over 3,000 students, is the second-largest school in this study.
|McCallie School TN||939||SE||3|
|Phillips Exeter Academy NH||1,077||NE||3|
|Mountain View UT||1,355||SW||3|
|Dowling Catholic IA||1,391||HL||3|
|Downers Grove North IL||2,216||MW||3|
|Rocky Mountain ID||2,403||NW||3|
|San Clemente CA||2,948||CA||3|
- McCallie School is a private boarding school located in Chattanooga, Tennessee
- Phillips Exeter Academy is also a private boarding school, located in New Hampshire.