Gerry Gimelstob, George Washington University's new basketball coach, said yesterday he supports the university's longstanding policy of refusing to waive normal admissions standards for athletes.
"I don't want to coach kids who are dumb," Gimelstob told a news conference at Marvin Center that was called to introduce him to the Washington-area media.
Gimelstob, former assistant coach of NCAA champion Indiana, was hired by GW last week to replace Bob Tallent, who was fired March 4 at the end of an 8-19 season. Tallent had complained that GW's recruiting budget and restrictive admissions policy made it difficult for him to produce winning teams.
I will recruit good kids who are good students who are also good basketball players," said Gimelstob, adding that he is satisfied with his recriuting budget -- said to be approximately $20,000.
"I'm pursuing a lot of guys," said Gimelstob, 30. "You don't have to spend a lot of money on recruiting. You can spend a whole lot of money and still not win. Like size and jumping ability, money is often overrated. There are a lot of great high school basketball programs right here in the Washington area."
Gimelstob said his recruiting efforts will be confined mainly within a 300-mile radius of Washington, but he noted this would include major metropolitan areas in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, as well as Maryland, Virginia and the District.
"Not every kid who is a good basketball player is right for George Washington University," Gimelstob said. "We have to find those players whose needs can match what George Washington University has to offer. We can offer them the chance to live in the most exciting city in the world and get as good an education as they can get anywhere in the country.