Alan West. The 6-foot-2, 260-pound defensive lineman has committed to
play at University of Pennsylvania, an Ivy-League powerhouse.
"We try to convey to our players that there is more to life than
just football," Burroughs Coach Keith Knoop said. "They realize that
if they want to play at the college level, they have to take care of
To make sure the Indian players stay on the right academic path,
Knoop and his staff initiate grade checks every five weeks. If an
athlete is having problems with his studies, the coaches guide him to
specific counseling and study groups to help him get back on track.
"I haven't figured it out for this year yet," Knoop said. "But for
last year, for all of our football levels, I think we had something
like 98% of our players who had a 2.4, or better, grade-point
"Education is important in our program and we do all that we can
to prepare them for life after high school."
Knoop also receives help keeping players academically on track
from the Burroughs administration.
"Not just Coach Knoop, but all of our coaches have access to my
computer system to keep track of players' grades," said Jay Gudzin,
Burroughs vice principal of academics and athletics. "We also utilize
the NCAA Clearinghouse so players can see what is expected of them at
a particular college."
During Knoop's six-year tenure as Burroughs coach, the program has
turned out its share of Ivy League players. West joins Joey Learman
(class of 1998; Columbia), Kyle Cremarosa (1999; Harvard) and Keith
Jarbo (2001; Brown) who have earned their way to institutions of
"The Ivey League schools are not easy to get into, academic wise,"
Knoop said. "They have certain standards that they are looking for.
At Harvard, I think if you don't get at least a 1,320 on the
[Scholastic Achievement Test], they won't even look at you."
West -- who had his pick of just about every Ivy League school --
had no problem achieving that standard, as he scored a 1,370 on the
SAT. He also has a 4.4 grade-point average.
"The great thing about Coach Knoop and the other coaches is that