Work HARD. Coming into ski racing late in the game is HARD. You will have to be at the top of your game as a free skier, and then realize that you are once again at the bottom of the barrel. I thought I knew a lot about skiing... then I started racing at the ripe old age of 18. I have gone through tons of conditioning and training (as well as PT resulting from injuries). Lets just say that before I raced I didn't really know a whole lot about skiing - no doubt I was a very good skier - but no where near what racing turned me into. When I came to Buffalo to go to school, there was little activity on the ski team. In late december of my freshman year i took over the leadership of the team and built it up from there. We currently have a full men's and women's roster of some of the best college age racers in western NY (all the better ones are at academies and D1 schools). We have since made two national championships and three regional championships... So, the moral of the story? Those schools you're looking at will provide plenty of competition at the races - since my team is only among the top 3 teams in western NY... at the club level.
Binghampton has a better team than Geneseo (which is just above snow tubing). The last i knew, the Binghampton team was having financial/administration trouble. If you have only spent one year racing - you will not make a varsity team your first year. You will be lucky to get the coach to even look at you without having your USSA points below 60 in both GS and SL, and your FIS points somewhere in the 80's range. Ski racers spend years, and huge sums of money in preparation for college and academy level racing. The few that make it are at the top of their game after years of hard work and dedication to the sport. They work out year round, and often spend their summers skiing in Europe, Hood, or down under. One guy on my team actually went to "ski school" in Italy for a year, and is now only racing on a club team (his FIS points are in the high 70's i think).
If you want a more serious team and want to stay in western NY look at Alfred U, Cornell U, Syracuse, Buffalo, or Hobart. Those teams are essentially the best in the area. If you go to SU, I doubt you will see a "varsity" race before you graduate - I watched their top 4 guys beat everyone at Clarkson (varsity school) last season. The coach of Cornell (who I know very well) likes to find talent and I think he is hurting for skiers so you would do well on their team. The coach of alfred, while a great coach and a good guy... probably wouldn't have you skiing for him the first year unless he was desperate for a 4 or 5 seed racer. His top racer was the best in our conference last year (around 60 USSA points I think - anyone want to verify that? - I assume someone here must know who I am talking about). Matt spent his summers training in New Zealand, and graduated from an academy in Vermont... he didnt go on to "serious" competition because he was one of the SLOW GUYS.
Now, since I have run a ski team in the Empire Conference for about 4 years now, I have seen first year racers do very well. I myself have roken into the top 15 and top 10 a few times in our races. Most first timers come in about 40th to 60th though. From there it is a lot of training and hard work to get to break even the top 20. Is it worth it? Hell yes it is. When you lay down your first top 10 run you will know that your work has paid off (mine was in my second year of racing). True, its not first, but when 10 races earlier you were 35th... 10th is pretty damned good. The only problem is that as you get better, so does the competition, so you have to work that much harder. I don't want to discourage you at all, but I do want you to be prepared for what you're going to run into when you get to the hill and start racing with these guys. If you want information on the University at Buffalo I can provide it - I doubt you would make our varisty team, but you may be able to get some JV races in if you were to come here. By the time you're a freshman I suspect my UB team will rival SU for western NY dominance and depth.