Ian Newman, San Jose State University (Seeker/Beater)
The SJSU Owls don’t get much recognition in the Quidditch world, being overshadowed by their Bay Area neighbors Cal and Silicon Valley Skrewts, both of which have World Cup experience (and thus name recognition) under their belts. But SJSU has quietly built a large and effective Quidditch program even while flying under the radar. Their strategy is superb, and allows them to optimally utilize the many different players they have on their roster. However, their greatest strength lies in the fact that if they are in Snitch range, the odds are incredibly high that they will win, thanks to their terrific Seeker Ian Newman.
Physically, Ian is about average. He’s not incredibly fast, but fast enough. He’s not incredibly strong, but strong enough. He’s not incredibly big, but big enough. Based on these traits alone, Ian would be a decent Seeker.
However, Ian is far more than a decent Seeker. His Snitch catch rate is incredible (I don’t know the exact numbers, but I would speculate, based on what I know, that it’s probably around 90 percent). Part of what makes Ian such an effective Seeker is the fact that he takes an incredibly cerebral approach to Seeking. He seems to be constantly analyzing the Snitch and instantly processing the best way to make the grab. At Western Cup, the Snitches had a run through the night before of the Snitch boundaries and strategy tips. Despite the fact that he wasn’t Snitching, Ian came along on the run in order to be familiar with the boundaries and be able to understand the Snitches’ strategies. He is constantly altering his Seeker strategy to adapt to different types of Snitches and environments. Ian may very well be the “smartest” Seeker in all of Quidditch (by that I mean he takes the most intellectual approach to Seeking of any Seeker I’ve ever seen).
Ian is also quite tenacious. He is constantly pestering the Snitch and constantly trying to exploit that Snitch’s weakness. Many Seekers back off when a Snitch starts to get the upper hand on them, hoping that the other Seeker will create an opening for them to sneak in and grab the Snitch. Not Ian. At Cinco Cup, Ian got flipped by the Snitch and was in a good deal of pain. He hopped right back up and went immediately back to pressuring the Snitch.
If you are looking for a Seeker who almost never makes a dumb mistake, is constantly pressuring the Snitch, and has an extremely high success rate, look no further than Ian Newman.
(EDIT: Ian is also a terrific Beater, but I have not seen him Beating, so I am unable to make an analysis of him as a Beater).