Tuesday, October 29, 2019

A Football Twist to a Partisan Divide

OCTOBER 29, 2019 | written by Steve Ulrich
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III

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1.  A Football Twist to a Partisan Divide

The National Federation of State High School Associations released its annual report last month, which revealed that participation rates in sports overall declined for the first time in 30 years—including drops in basketball (notably girls'), baseball and football, which saw a decrease for the fifth straight year. In the last decade, 11-player football participation is down 9.5%, even as the population has grown by 7.5%. But a look inside the numbers tells a more nuanced—and more interesting—story.

Football participation is up significantly in four states: Alabama (45%), Louisiana (56%), Oklahoma (15%) and Utah (9%). Those states all supported Donald Trump, by at least 18-point margins, over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. Of the places that went to Clinton, only Nevada and Washington, D.C., have seen football participation rates rise since 2008–09.

In fact, participation is down only 6.1% in states that were red in 2016; it is down 15.7% in blue states.

Could it be that the divide falls along similar fault lines as much of our political debate? Your answer to some policy questions may provide a window into how you view football. Anti-regulation? You probably think players should be free to wear whatever helmet they like.

>> Reality Check: Football is still the most played high school sport among boys, with more than one million participants.

>> The Big Picture: People in red and blue states will continue to watch the game. The NFL's TV ratings were up 5% last year and 46 of the top 50 telecasts during the season belonged to the league.

>> Read More from Sports Illustrated

2. It's Hockey Season

Yeah, sure Old Time Hockey!
Like Eddie Shore
Eddie Shore yeah
Coach....our line starts?

- The Hanson Brothers from the movie, Slap Shot

The U.S. College Hockey Online has released its preseason rankings in women's and men's ice hockey.

  1. Plattsburgh
  2. Hamline
  3. Adrian
  4. Elmira
  5. St. Thomas
  6. Williams
  7. UW-Eau Claire
  8. UW-River Falls
  9. Norwich
  10. Middlebury
  1. UW-Stevens Point
  2. Norwich
  3. Geneseo
  4. St. Norbert
  5. Hobart
  6. Oswego
  7. Adrian
  8. Augsburg
  9. U. of New England
  10. Trinity
  11. UW-Eau Claire
  12. UMass Boston
  13. Utica
  14. Manhattanville
  15. Babson

3.  OAC.TV

The Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC), through its partnership with BoxCast, has launched OAC TV. OAC TV is a digital network where fans can find easy access to live high definition video streams of hundreds athletic events.
Through this deal, OAC members will not only be able to showcase athletic events live on the web, but also on mobile devices and on Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire, beginning in November 2019.

“We are excited to enhance our current relationships with BoxCast, evolve with the times and take another step forward as a collective group,” said Adam Prescott, sports information director at Otterbein University and president of the league’s SID Task Force. “Everyone holds great pride working in the OAC, which has consistently gained a reputation as one of the top Division III conferences in the country. This is a prime opportunity to further showcase the excellence of our standout programs, coaches and student-athletes.”

    4. Polls

    Football - D3Football.com
    1. Mount Union (7-0)
    2. Mary Hardin-Baylor (7-0)
    3. UW-Whitewater (7-0)
    4. Saint John's (7-0)
    5. Wheaton, Ill. (7-0)
    6. Muhlenberg (7-0)
    7. North Central (6-1)
    8. Ithaca (7-0)
    9. Bethel (6-1)
    10. Salisbury (6-0)
    11. John Carroll, 12. Wartburg, 13. UW-Platteville, 14. Wesley, 15. Delaware Valley, 16. Chapman, 17. Hardin-Simmons, 18. Cortland, 19. St. Thomas, 20. Susquehanna, 21. Case Western, 22. Berry, 23. Redlands, 24. Linfield, 25. Union.
    Football - AFCA
    1. Mary Hardin-Baylor (7-0)
    2. Mount Union (7-0)
    3. UW-Whitewater (7-0)
    4. Saint John's (7-0)
    5. Wheaton, Ill. (7-0)
    6. Muhlenberg (7-0)
    7. Ithaca (7-0)
    8. North Central (6-1)
    9. Wartburg (7-0)
    10. Salisbury (6-0)
    11. John Carroll, 12. Delaware Valley, 13. Bethel, 14. Wesley, 15. UW-Platteville, 16. Hardin-Simmons, 17. Case Western, 18. Cortland, 19. Chapman, 20. Linfield, 21. Berry, 22. Susquehanna, 23. St. Thomas, 24. Union, 25. Bridgewater.

    >> Other Undefeated Teams: Bridgewater (7-0), Case Western (7-0), Chapman (6-0), Cortland (7-0), Middlebury (7-0), Union (7-0), Wartburg (7-0), WPI (7-0).

    >> What to Watch: The first NCAA regional rankings are released on Wednesday.


    5.  Comings and Goings 


    6.  1 Band Thing

    Props to the Ohio State band for this truly inspired trip to Bikini Bottom to salute "SpongeBob Square Pants."

    >> Watch Entire Show or the condensed version.



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