Ricky Weisskopf, Bates College
Walter Ricardo “Ricky” Weisskopf was probably the best men’s squash player ever at Bates the moment he stepped on campus as a first-year student. Already a prominent member of his native El Salvador’s national squash team, Weisskopf wasted no time in establishing himself on the College Squash Association circuit, building a 21-1 record as a freshman while playing the opposition’s top player in every Bates match. He achieved a final national individual ranking of No. 18 and became the first male in Bates history to win CSA All-America honors, taking a place on the Second Team, and was named the Bates Male Athlete of the Year.
Pretty heady stuff for a first-year student, but Weisskopf only continued to back up his quickly burgeoning reputation. As a sophomore he went 22-2, achieving a final individual ranking of 14th, to earn his second All-America honors. As a junior he went 25-3, ranked 12th individually at the end of the season, and the economics and physics double major added NESCAC and CSA All-Academic honors to his litany of awards.
The way Weisskopf lifted his team’s national profile, it was fitting that his senior year stood as the Bobcats’ best season to date. With Weisskopf going 15-3 individually and ranking ninth in the nation, the Bobcats went 14-4 on the year and finished with an all-time best ranking of No. 9 by capturing the Hoehn (“B” Division) Cup at the CSA Team Nationals, defeating Brown, Cornell and Rochester in succession to win the division.
At the tournament Weisskopf was bestowed the CSA’s Skillman Award, known as the sport’s highest honor, which goes to the most complete senior male player in the country. Weisskopf also earned his fourth All-America honors, and his first spot on the First Team. With a four-year individual record of 83-9 while facing the opponent’s No. 1 player in every one of the Bobcats’ matches, Weisskopf graduated with firm standing as an all-time great in any sport at Bates College.
An economics major, Weisskopf accomplished all this while excelling in the classroom as well. The title of his thesis was “Returns to Human Capital Investment: The Effect of the Choice of Field of Study in Labor Market Earnings.” He was a two-time NESCAC Winter All-Academic selection and the recipient of the 2007 George Wigton Scholar Athlete Award. Weisskopf was honored as one of 28 members of the 2009 class of the prestigious Bates College Scholar-Athlete Society.