Siblings present interesting dilemmas and opportunities for college coaches. When a talented duo emerge, a coach can often gain an advantage in recruiting a younger brother and sister if he or she has recruited their senior sibling.
Those interactions become more complicated when the siblings being recruited are twins. For instance, what happens if a school wants to add one twin but not the other?
That exact convoluted moral dilemma may be playing out before our very eyes in Virginia, where a set of twins is reportedly insisting on attending college to play basketball together, regardless of how that affects their recruiting status as individuals. According to the Washington Post's James Wagner, Caroline and Katherine Coyer have starred together in both basketball and soccer at Oakton (Va.) High, and they've made every college that has professed interest in their athletic abilities realize that they will only sign with a school as part of a package deal.
"Both of us are at our full potential when we're playing together," Caroline Coyer told the Post. "And, you know, she picks up the slack in places that I lack. I pick up the slack in places that she lacks."
The two twins clearly share a unique bond, even for near identical twins. The pair has never spent more than nine days apart, and decided that it had no intention of going even that long again in the future.
That has put a strain on top college coaches who had focused much of their recruiting attention for the Class of 2012 on Caroline Coyer, who was the 2010-11 Northern Virginia player of the year and is widely considered a more sure-fire Division I prospect than her sister.
While the need to devote as much as half of a team's allotted recruiting spots in a given year to a pair of sisters has pushed some top schools away, others -- including ACC power Florida State and Big East contender Villanova -- have continued to push to land both sisters.
For her part, Caroline said that whichever school eventually committed to using both sisters would never regret it … just as she and her sister will only live up to their full potential playing together in a system that accommodates them both.
"If we were to go anywhere, any coach would realize that Katherine brings just as much to the program, if not more, than what I do," Caroline Coyer told the Post. "That's why when coaches are like, 'We don't really see it,' or, 'We really can't take both of you,' some people would be hurt by it. But for me its just like, 'All right, that's one letter down.'
"I'd rather play at a school with my sister that wants both of us and really values both of our talents and sees what we will bring to their programs than a school that maybe only wants one of us and is only bringing the other one along just because. I definitely wouldn't want to play without her."