zarathustra wrote:joining the group...and hoping the faculty likes me. Any ideas on what matters most at this stage of the game? Numbers or softs?
FR is good or bad depending on the strengths of your application. If you were relying on numbers to get in, the 11% overall acceptance rate is deceiving because you can typically toss out almost half of the applicant pool even at a holistic place like Berkeley. So in reality if you had 172/3.85 your chances were a lot better than 11% (given you didn't apply late)
The way I look at it now is that FR has an approximately 13% acceptance rate. This is pure speculation, but I bet the students and faculty members care even less about numbers than the adcomms do. Meaning unless you've got really good softs, you're probably screwed.
Again, all speculation. And I'm not an intelligent person to begin with so it's dumb speculation.