Greg Cannon, director of public affairs for the Poughkeepsie school, said the team was reaching the end of its morning row Monday when crew coach Matt Lavin spotted the head floating in the water, ABC News reported Friday.
Lavin "was in a small motor boat beside the team," Cannon said. "He didn't know what it was at first, but saw it was an obstruction that would have been in the way of the shipping channel. So he went out to investigate."
Lavin towed the head to the shore and the team helped him pull it from the water.
"They pulled it in and it's some kind of Styrofoam core with a fiberglass shell over it," Cannon said. "Enough of the foam was exposed that it got water logged. It had gotten pretty heavy. Members of the team helped drag it up onto the dock."
Cannon said the origins of the head remain a mystery.
"It could have been washed away in a storm," he said, "maybe even Sandy."