Cal Rower: Emily Long Commits to Cal


By Ben Harris

Many student athletes aspire to reach the next level in the sport they participate in; in most cases at Tam this is football, basketball, or baseball. However, Emily Long rows, and she reached the the next level in her sport when she was recruited and accepted a scholarship to the University of California, Berkeley. Long will be attending Cal next fall with an $800 scholarship.

“I was recruited to Cal in November,” Long said. “I am officially signed, meaning my letter of intent and my application are submitted. I am now waiting for my admissions letter.”

Long has overcome a lot to reach the college level, including an injury. “I have been rowing since freshman year,” Long said. “I made the varsity boat my sophomore year after having patella tendonitis [in my knee] for the first half of the year. I didn’t always plan on rowing in college but I started rowing because I was feeling lost my freshman year. Rowing gave me a sense of community. My teammates are like family to me.”

Long finds her motivation through rowers that she looks up to. “My biggest inspiration has to be the legacy of those women who came before me,” Long said. “Logan Harris [a former Tam graduate] has been my idol for years. She rows at Brown and is an amazing person. She was the first varsity athlete to talk to me and even let me train with her over the summer.”

Long has a few tricks that keep her motivated during her races. “During 2ks, the most painful of races but also the most exciting, I used to think about the people that are still on land,” Long said. “Like my little brother Chris Long. He rows now as well, and I take great pleasure in bestowing all my knowledge on him.”

Long explained how at the end a race, she has no memory of it. “During 2k races I go blank and listen to the rhythm of the boat. By the end, I have no recollection of the race,” Long said. “If you asked me what my birthday is I wouldn’t be able to tell you or answer any question for that matter, That’s how exhausted I am.”

Although rowing contributed to her committing to Berkeley, for Long it means more than that. “Rowing is more to me than a recruitment tool,” Long said. “Lots of people ask me why I row. I row for the feeling of connection with my team. There is a thing called “swing” in a boat when everyone is together. This is the time of the greatest boat speed.

“It is my search for swing, for speed and for a sense of purpose that keeps me in that boat. We go through a lot. Lots of pain, both emotional and physical,” Long said.

Long has a passion for rowing which makes it so exciting. “We are expected to push through when every instinct of our body tells us not to. That kind of passion comes deep within us rowers and why we find the sport so alluring. The pursuit of perfection in a hell of our own creation.” ♦