an opinion piece in The Washington Post in October in which he said that although Princeton had topped the U.S. News rankings for 11 years, he was not a fan of the list.

“I am convinced that the rankings game is a bit of mishegoss — a slightly daft obsession that does harm when colleges, parents or students take it too seriously,” he wrote. Because students felt pressure to get into high-ranked schools, he said, schools concentrated resources on moving up in the rankings, to the detriment of goals like admitting more talented low-income students.

Alain Delaquérière contributed research.

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