Marc Talbott ’18
Menlo Park, Calif.
What was your athletic career like when you were a child and when you were in high school?
Growing up, I always played a lot of different sports all the time – soccer, baseball, basketball, etc. I started skiing when I was still in diapers and I started ski racing when I was six so I’ve been at it for a while. My parents originally put my brother and I on the ski team so that we could learn how to ski safely, and everything kind of snowballed from there to the point where we both ended up attending a ski acad-emy. During high school, I went to a small boarding school. [I was in a class of 10] and that was a pretty sizable and relatively large class year for this school. We would ski six days a week in the mornings and then have a regular class day after that.
What was it like transition from that small high school environment to Williams?
Well, I think I might be one of the few people at Williams who thinks this, but Williams seems pretty big to me. Although Williams is more intense academically, I think that all the travel and skiing I did in high school really taught me to manage my time pretty well. My days weren’t always necessarily super structured, especially when we would spend weeks at a time on the road, so I had to learn how to manage things.
What was your recruiting process in coming to Williams like?
There’s only one division for skiing in that all schools that are traditionally Div. III compete against schools that are Div. I, like the University of Vermont, the Ivies, etc. When I was thinking about Williams, I sent emails to a bunch of the coaches. I came and visited Williams just on a tour of a bunch of the schools, ate lunch with the team and met the coach. I actually happened to visit campus during Previews for the Class of 2017, so I was able to participate in some of these activities a year early, which really allowed me to see what Williams was like.
What is it like being a captain as a sophomore?
I don’t think that there are any [other] sophomore captains. The one senior on our team had back issues, so he was essentially forced off of the team due to injury because he can’t ski and lift. We still spend a good amount of time with him, but he can’t do everything that a captain might need to do including things like being at practice and leading by example in races. We have two juniors on our team who were both abroad in the fall, so I was actually basically the oldest person on the [men’s] team this fall.
I remember going to the captain’s training session that we do in the fall and noticing how the people running the meeting kept joking, “Hey you’re all seniors, you’re working on your theses, maybe there are a couple of juniors in the mix” and I just kept looking around and feeling young.
When freshmen ask me how we do certain things, all I can really say is “Well, this is how we did it last year.”. It’s been really helpful having Merritt [Harlan ’16], my co-captain, because we can bounce ideas off of each other, and she has a better sense of what has happened in the past. I actually think it’s nice that they have a captain who is only a year older than them. In a lot of cases, actually, a lot of the freshmen have taken gap years so we really are the same age. I don’t think I seem as old and intimidating as maybe a senior captain might be.
What would you say is your go-to snack bar order?
When I’m really hungry, I get a Bagel Supreme and a breakfast burrito from Lee’s, which I find is more than enough food for any situation.
Anything else you’d like to add about your experience as captain?
Being a captain this year has actually been a much easier process than I was initially expecting, just because the team has been so motivated. They really feed off of each other’s energy so I don’t feel like I’m having to force people to work harder at practice. We’ve also had some success from some of the freshmen, which has been really exciting.