When you think of CalTech, you think of scientists, engineers and mathematicians. You don't necessarily think about athletics, and I would venture to guess that some people do not even know that CalTech fields sports teams. Still, there is something very admirable about the athletic program these days, particularly in light of recent events. Maybe they aren't the most accomplished athletic programs in the country. In fact, they are probably one of the worst, if not the absolute worst. Still, there are some very commendable aspects of this program, and you have to give them credit for doing the right thing when it comes to NCAA regulations. Here are three reasons that this is a great athletic program.
Head basketball coach has a doctorate
How many schools across the country have a head basketball coach with a doctoral degree? CalTech does. Dr. Oliver Eslinger coaches the men's basketball team, and while he has only won one game during his career, it was a significant game. Eslinger led the Beavers to an inspired 46-45 win in 2011 over Occidental College. This was the team's first win since 1985. You have to possess a lot of character to coach through that kind of losing streak.
Losing, but not giving up
When you look at the athletic accomplishments of this school, there aren't many to examine. In a world where winning is sometimes pursued at any cost, including corrupt practices, CalTech keeps on playing. They not only lose, but they lose a lot. I suppose the cynical fan will smirk at this and suggest that CalTech doesn't really have a sports program that can be compared to other institutions of higher education. However, you could argue that CalTech plays for the love of the game, because they certainly aren't playing for wins.
They turned themselves in
The cashier gives you too much change, and upon getting home and discovering the error, you get back in your car and return to the gas station where you demonstrate the epitome of honesty by giving back the money that you did not deserve. That is noble, but it doesn't compare to the behavior of CalTech. They turned themselves in for violations that anyone else would consider to be inconsequential in the grand scheme of scholastic athletes. This is why CalTech should be admired, at least in the integrity department.
CalTech won't win any tournaments, but they certain play their sports the right way.
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