James Nicholas had one of the most interesting college decisions I can remember. He had Division I interest in three sports — football, hockey and golf — and many different permutations to consider.
One thing the Scarsdale star couldn’t do at the next level was play all three sports. He finally narrowed down his college choice — and then his sports. Ultimately, Nicholas announced Monday that he would play football and golf at Yale.
Nicholas, who is all-state and all-section in football, hockey and golf, said he chose Yale after a visit to the school last weekend. He then picked football and golf for two reasons: 1. If he chose hockey, the other two sports weren’t an option and he wanted to play multiple sports. 2. Playing hockey in college would require a season of junior hockey before enrolling in college.
Although this hockey season would appear to be his last, Nicholas is pretty darn good at hockey, too. He led the state in scoring last year as Scarsdale won a Section 1 title. The Raiders are now 10-0 after last night’s win, and Nicholas, who scored seven points in the game, now has 22 goals and 22 assists.
Nicholas is also the No. 86-ranked junior golfer in the country, according to the Golfweek rankings.
On the football field, he was one of the area’s top playmakers as a junior and senior. He had a hand in nine touchdowns in before suffering an ankle injury during the first half of Scardale’s third game this season. Nicholas did not return until Week 7 and did not play full-time until the following week, a Class AA quarterfinal loss to Mamaroneck.
Nicholas will play wide receiver and defensive back and return kicks at Yale. He will be one of the golf team’s top recruits after turning down overtures from Big 10 and ACC programs, among others.