Tony Azevedo Hosts College Recruiting Showcase at SMU

Laurie Dunlap

"I am so grateful to Texas for allowing us to compete this weekend. It was amazing to see such high level competition and have top colleges coaches watching live. Most importantly, it made almost 70 kids feel normal again. Life without your favorite thing in the world is tough for a teenager and we were able to give them 4 days of what they have been yearning to do for 10 months. Thank you Texas...6-8 will be back." - Tony Azevedo, 5X Olympian and Silver Medalist and Founder of 6-8 Sports, an athlete performance analytics company.

When COVID hit, water polo practices, tournaments and clinics were canceled across the US. Olympian Tony Azevedo was frustrated that high school water polo athletes were not being exposed to college coaches, and he decided to pull together top players from different regions of the country to play in a college showcase. California pools were closed, and the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs was unavailable, but Texas pools were open and allowing full contact. Tony reached out to his friends at Pegasus (former US National Team teammate, Coach Spencer Dornin, and 6-8 Advisory Board Member, Leslie Benners) to put on a one-of-a-kind multi-program event at SMU Aquatics Center from December 18th - 21st. The event had multiple programs for all age groups and skill levels (see below!). 

The 6-8 program has received great reviews, with one California water polo parent saying, “6-8 just showed us all a path forward. The college showcase tournament they hosted at SMU was significantly more competitive than an ODP National Championship.” Pegasus is so happy and honored to have been a part of this incredible event with Tony and his team, and we are looking forward to continued partnership moving forward! 

College Recruiting Showcase & Tournament

With the help of local coaches, Tony invited 32 female and 32 male athletes from different regions around the country. He chose these athletes based on their talent, potential, work ethic and 6-8 Challenge scores

On Day 1, all athletes passed through the 6-8 Challenge and were divided into teams based on their results. They participated in a 3 day tournament that was live streamed (by Game On Live Studio) to all college coaches in the US. College coaches were also provided with a spreadsheet with detailed information on each athlete along with the 6-8 Challenge scores/ rankings. College recruiting has been challenging this year due to COVID limitations, so this was a fantastic and unique opportunity for coaches to watch top athletes play safely from a distance. The live stream had hundreds of viewers during the games, and thousands of views over the weekend.

Seven Pegasus players participated in the college recruiting showcase and tournament: Jackson Benners, Jack Berube, Can Caglar, James Carr, Brett Honaker, Leo Ohannessian, and Meg Peters. 

4 on 4 HS Boys Tournament

Another group of 20+ high school boys also participated in a 4 on 4 beach style tournament. They started with a private clinic with Tony Azevedo, 6 on 5 breakdown with Tony, and a special virtual presentation on college recruiting by Pepperdine Coach Merrill Moses. Their games were filmed by parent volunteers and they will all get access to their video to use as they choose. 

14U Clinic w/ Adam Wright, Head Coach UCLA Men’s and Women’s Water Polo

UCLA's Adam Wright led a 2-day clinic for over 30x 14U athletes. They worked with Adam for 3 hour segments on both Sunday and Monday. 

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