Thursday, September 5, 2019

The Eternal Football Rules Debate

SEPTEMBER 5, 2019 | written by Steve Ulrich
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III
Welcome to d3Playbook

Some of you are receiving the d3Playbook via email because of your role as an influencer in Division III athletics. d3Playbook is available as a subscription email and can also be viewed online here at

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Thanks for reading.


>> This morning's word count - 766. How long can it take ... 
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1. The NFL, the NCAA and the Eternal Football Rules Debate

"Here in America, we play by our own rules. I don’t mean this in some jingoistic, political, or metaphorical way. I mean that the United States is pretty much the only country on the planet that insists on creating its own rules for every sport it plays.
Take basketball. Virtually every country on earth uses the rules put forth by FIBA, the international governing body of the sport. Every country, that is, except America, where the NBA and NCAA each have separate sets of rules. And while men and women play by the same rules under FIBA, the WNBA and women’s college basketball have their own sets of rules that differ from each other, from the international rules, and from American men’s rules.

Unlike basketball, American football is not a game played across the world. The vast majority of football interest and participation lies in two countries: the United States and Canada. And yet, somehow, we’re a million miles from having anything resembling a consensus on rules. The NFL has its own distinct rules; the NCAA has its own distinct rules. Canadian football rules are so dramatically dissimilar from American football rules that its form of the game is generally considered its own sport.

So when pro football and college football differ, who wins? We took a look at six major rule differences to determine which version is superior."

>> Be Smart: The NFL and NCAA have no incentive to unify their rules, and probably never will. The NCAA even created a new rule book for soccer, possibly the only league that felt compelled to do so.

>> Best Quotes: "The toe tap is a ballet move on grass." "The basketball world accepts a "smart foul" - why can't the football world accept a smart penalty, too?"

>> Who Won: The final score was 4-2.

>> Read More from Rodger Sherman, The Ringer

2. Today's Top-25 Games

(6) Johns Hopkins at (24) Randolph-Macon (watch)


3. Today's Play of the Day

4. Yesterday's Top-25 Scores

Field Hockey
(19) Ursinus d. (4) Messiah, 2-1

Soccer (W)
(7) Messiah d. (16) Johns Hopkins, 1-0

(22) Saint Benedict d. (4) UW-Eau Claire, 3-1
(12) UW-Whitewater d. (19) Carthage, 3-1
(25) Washington-St. Louis d. (24) Illinois Wesleyan, 3-1


5.  Comings and Goings

6. Today's Number: 26

With their lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation over equal pay ongoing, the U.S. women’s national team has found other ways to profit from their fame and success. The USWNT Players Association projects to make over $1 million through licensing deals, including Wheaties boxes, t-shirts and bobbleheads, despite being told during collective bargaining negotiations that their image had no value. I did not know an Alex Morgan sipping tea bobblehead existed, and now I need one. 

>> courtesy of FiveThirtyEight
7. 1 Big Thing: College Towns Are Crushing It
College towns are emerging as economic powerhouses, thanks to their outsized share of the young, highly educated workers who are in such high demand.
The big picture: Major universities — particularly research institutions and those affiliated with nearby medical centers — employ tens of thousands of people and spend billions annually.

By the numbers: College-centric towns are well-positioned to see 11% employment growth over the next decade by leveraging their well-educated worker pools in STEM, health care and creative jobs, according to a recent McKinsey Global Institute study.

And now, instead of leaving for bigger cities right after graduation, a growing number of grads start businesses and hire people, creating new feedback loops of investment and driving more amenities that attract other talent to the area.

What's next: Midsize post-industrial cities are increasingly leaning on universities and medical centers —"eds and meds" — to replace dwindling manufacturing jobs.
  • University cities — like Pittsburgh, home to Carnegie Mellon; Baltimore, home to Johns Hopkins; and St. Louis, home to Washington University — have the benefits of larger populations, an existing employment base and generally higher research budgets, Andes said.

>> Read More from Kim Hart, Axios

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Wednesday, September 4, 2019

The Cupcake Business

SEPTEMBER 4, 2019 | written by Steve Ulrich
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III
1. Welcome to d3Playbook

Some of you are receiving the d3Playbook via email because of your role as an influencer in Division III athletics. d3Playbook is available as a subscription email and can also be viewed online here at

Our goal is to keep you apprised of what's happening around Division III - the games, polls, news, happenings, awards, calendar of events, and much more. We hope you enjoy d3Playbook and that you'll share this with your friends, colleagues and co-workers.

Thanks for reading.


>> This morning's word count - 743.
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2. The Cupcake Business
Scheduling FCS Foes is All About the Benjamins

"Penn State embarrassed a really, really bad Idaho team Saturday, 79-7, and by this point, we all know why these kinds of games are played.
Big teams eat up the cupcake opponents, who in turn get tons of money to take back to their campus and use it to fund the rest of their athletic department.
That’s how the business of college sports works around the country, for better or worse.
But why, specifically, did Penn State play Idaho, an FCS opponent that might be the worst visiting team ever at Beaver Stadium? There’s an interesting back story, and I’ll get to it in a bit.

Staying close to home, I was asked this by a half-dozen people over the past couple of days: If PSU is going to play Idaho and pay that school a whopping $1.45 million for the game, why can’t the Lions throw a bone to Saint Francis and schedule a game against the FCS program from Loretto?"

>> Read More from Corey Giger, Altoona Mirror 

>> DYK: FBS football programs hand out 85 full scholarships. FCS schools are permitted a maximum of 63 scholarships which can be divided into partial scholarships. Saint Francis' conference - The Northeast Conference - permits just 45. Division II programs are permitted 36 scholarships.

>> Cha-Ching: Idaho made $1.2M for a trip to Florida last year and was supposed to receive $1.4M for a trip to LSU next fall. 

3. Today's Tweet

Juniata lost its opening men's soccer match to Transylvania, 2-1, but Charlie Kovach's goal certainly caught our eye. 

4. Polls, Polls and More Polls

  1. Emory (69)
  2. Calvin (9)
  3. Juniata
  4. UW-Eau Claire
  5. Claremont-M-S
  6. Johnson & Wales (R.I.)
  7. Trinity (Texas)
  8. Wittenberg
  9. Berry
  10. Colorado College
11. Gustavus Adolphus, 12. UW-Whitewater, 13. Chicago, 14. Christopher Newport, 15. Ithaca, 16. Wesleyan (Conn.), 17. Hope, 18. Babson, 19. Carthage, 20. Mary Hardin-Baylor, 21. Ohio Northern, 22. Saint Benedict, 23. Pacific Lutheran, 24. Illinois Wesleyan, 25. Washington-St. Louis.

>> Big Movers: +10: Berry, +8: Christopher Newport, +7: Trinity (Texas), Gustavus Adolphus.

>> Big Drops: -11: Washington-St. Louis, Illinois Wesleyan, -5 Mary Hardin-Baylor

>> Welcome: Carthage, Pacific Lutheran.

>> Bye-Bye: Aurora, Bowdoin

5. News You Can Use

Today's top-25 matchups

Field Hockey
(4) Messiah at (19) Ursinus (watch)

Soccer (W)
(16) Johns Hopkins at (7) Messiah (watch)

(22) Saint Benedict at (4) UW-Eau Claire (watch)
(19) Carthage at (12) UW-Whitewater (watch)
(24) Illinois Wesleyan at (25) Washington-St. Louis (watch)

    6.  Comings ... 

    7. ... and Goings
    8. Today's Number: 45

    Feel like you missed your moment to become a billionaire tech baron who is being hauled in front of Congress now that your startup is a megacompany? Don’t worry! You don’t have to have founded a company in college to have the honor. A group of economists analyzed the fastest growing startups started from 2007 to 2014 and found that the company’s founders were 45 years-old at the time of the company’s creation, on average.

    courtesy of New York Times
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    Tuesday, September 3, 2019

    To Stream or Not to Stream

    View this email in your browser
    SEPTEMBER 3, 2019 | written by Steve Ulrich
    your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III

    1. To Stream or Not to Stream

    Remember when you had to actually get up off your couch to go see a Division III game? Maybe you went to see the home team or perhaps you went on the road to your alma mater on Homecoming. Today, you can watch games from the comfort of your living room.

    Thanks to providers such as PrestoSports, SidearmSports and BlueFrame Technology, DIII schools and conferences now provide live streams of athletic events and make them available on your desktop, laptop, tablet and mobile devices. And streaming services such as Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Chromecast make games available via custom over-the-top (OTT) applications.

    These broadcasts come complete with multi-camera views, replays, graphics and announcers. And many schools and conferences are offering the broadcasts for free.

    Recently, Presto partnered with the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference to produce a conference-wide digital network. BlueFrame added the Atlantic Eastand North Coast Athletic Conference to its stable during the summer. And more conference networks are on the way.

    >> Quotable: "BlueFrame's platform will help the Atlantic East expand its reach and provide fans with a viewing experience that is second-to-none in Division III."  - Jessica Huntley, Commissioner, Atlantic East Conference

    >> Quotable II: "The piece that really excites us is the ability to push content to our own OTT application. The SCAC can basically become its own streaming network, not unlike ESPN+, and that is a potential game-changer for everyone who is a fan of our league."  - Dwayne Hanberry, Commissioner, Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference

    >> DYK?: Johns Hopkins had nearly 9,000 unique IP addresses view its 2016 second-round football playoff game against Mount Union. 

    2. The Best Fed Programs in America

    Kendall Baker of Axios Sports looked at every single play from the 2018 football season and calculated the average weight of every player on the field to determine the best fed college football teams in the country

    3. Admissions Pressure Grows

    "Colleges may soon face more competition for students if the National Association for College Admission Counseling agrees -- under pressure from the federal government -- to withdraw several rules from its code of conduct.
    The association informed members of the proposed changes late last week. The changes are being proposed because the Justice Department, which has investigated NACAC for possible violations of antitrust laws, objects to them. While NACAC is not saying that it believes the provisions were wrong, it is saying that failure to approve the changes at the association's annual meeting this month in Louisville, Ky., could harm the association. The government appears to be asserting that the targeted rules -- which prohibit colleges from offering money and other incentives to students at various points in the admissions process, and discourage colleges' attempts to woo students who have committed to attend other institutions -- hurt students by limiting their choices."

    >> The DOJ Objection: The provisions deny colleges the right to compete for students by offering scholarships or other enticements to enroll.

    >> The NACAC Response: The provisions protect students. Without the bans, many colleges (low on prestige) would compete in ways that they cannot now.

    >> Be Smart. The changes could alter the way many colleges do business by changing the Code of Ethics and Professional Practice. This could allow enrollment incentives to be offered during early admission (special housing, enhanced financial aid packages, special scholarships). Colleges could continue recruiting students even after a commitment to a school has been made. 
    - courtesy of

    4. News You Can Use

    "Somewhere between birth and college, students hopefully have learned how to compose concise, grammatically correct and contextually appropriate emails. Often they haven't. So, to head off 3 a.m. need-your-help-now emails from Jake No Last Name, many professors explicitly teach students how to email them at the start of the academic year."

    >> Quotable: “In our own professional lives, when we have important emails to write, we get colleagues to read drafts and give us feedback before we hit ‘send.’ If we still seek help with emails, then our students probably need it, as well.” - Paul T. Corrigan and Cameron Hunt McNabb, Southeastern University

    Manners Count: Subject headers should be informative -- no “hey professor,” but rather, “Question about research paper due Nov. 1 in History 101.” And while professors may like being called “Professor” or even “Doctor,” they want their last names attached. Online resources don’t always recommend against “Mr.” or “Ms.” But several female professors told Inside Higher Ed this week that they dread “Mrs.”

    - courtesy of

      5.  1 Dorian thing

      Methodist University has canceled all classes along with all campus activities and athletic events beginning today and continuing through at least Sunday, Sept. 8. A voluntary student evacuation is in effect and students not yet on campus after the holiday weekend have been advised to remain at their locations.

      Monarch contests affected are as follows:
      • Football at Shenandoah
      • Women's soccer – vs. St. Andrews (Tues.), Brevard (Sat.) and Eastern Mennonite (Sun.)
      • Men's soccer – vs. Ferrum (Wed.)
      • Volleyball – cancellation of Fri.-Sat. trip to Maroon Classic at Roanoke College
      • Cross country – cancellation of trip to Sat.'s Fleet Feet XC Invite at Catawba College
      • Men's tennis – postponement of Methodist-hosted MU Fall Invite, Fri. through Sun.
      Make-up dates, if possible, will be announced as they become available.


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      Monday, September 2, 2019

      Happy Labor Day

      SEPTEMBER 2, 2019 | written by Steve Ulrich
      your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III

      1. Happy Labor Day

      On September 2, 2019, the U.S. Department of Labor celebrates and honors the greatest worker in the world – the American worker. Labor Day 2019 is the 125th anniversary of Labor Day being celebrated as a national holiday.

      On June 28, 1894, President Grover Cleveland signed a law making the first Monday in September of each year a national holiday.

      >> May Day? Most other countries celebrate International Workers' Day, or “May Day,” instead of Labor Day. The concept is the same, but it is celebrated on May 1 around the globe.

      >> Wearing White. The "No White After Labor Day" theory speaks to a more practical approach by pointing out that Memorial Day and Labor Day bracketed the summer season, and therefore lighter, summery, white clothes were no longer needed.

      >> Hot Dog! Labor Day also marks the end of Hot Dog season. Don't believe us? It's recorded as such on the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council website.

      2. Preseason Polls: Football

      1. Mary Hardin-Baylor
      2. Mount Union
      3. Saint John's
      4. UW-Whitewater
      5. North Central
      6. Johns Hopkins
      7. St. Thomas
      8. Muhlenberg
      9. Hardin-Simmons
      10. Bethel
      11. Whitworth, 12. Linfield, 13. Brockport, 14. Delaware Valley, 15. Illinois Wesleyan, 16. Berry, 17. John Carroll, 18. Wittenberg, 19. Rensselaer, 20. Centre, 21. Washington & Jefferson, 22. Wheaton, Ill., 23. Wabash, 24. Randolph-Macon, 25. St. Norbert.
      Also receiving votes: Trine, UW-La Crosse, Wartburg, Wesleym, Washington-St. Louis, Montclair State, Alfred, Ithaca, UW-Oshkosh, Central, Case Western Reserve, Baldwin Wallace, Salisbury., Trinity (Texas), Hope, Redlands, Marietta, Trinity (Conn.), MIT.

      >> Conference Call: The CCIW and MIAC led all conferences with three teams in the preseason poll. The MIAC placed all three in the top 10. Six other conferences had two representatives in the top 25 - American Southwest, Centennial, North Coast, Northwest, Ohio, and SAA.

      >> Looking Back: Mary Hardin-Baylor won its second Stagg Bowl title with a 24-16 victory against Mount Union before a crowd of 6,816 in Shenandoah, Texas. Jase Hammock threw a pair of touchdown passes.

      >> Who to Watch: There are 11 returnees from the 2018 All-America first team as selected by
      • Jackson Erdmann, Sr., QB, Saint John's
      • Justin Hill, Sr., WR, Mount Union
      • Ryan Curtiss, Sr., TE, Muhlenberg
      • Dan Greehack, Sr., OG, Saint John's
      • Frankie Feaster, Sr., DE, Muhlenberg
      • Jefferson Fritz, Jr., S, Mary Hardin-Baylor
      • Cal Lewellyn, Sr., CB, Centre
      • Derik Judka, Soph., K, North Central
      • Michael Raczak, Sr., P, Widener
      • Aaron Sims, Soph., RET, Mary Hardin-Baylor
      • Kyle Hogan, Sr., ST, Ohio Wesleyan

      >> Poll courtesy of

      3. Weekend Recap

      Field Hockey

      Friday, August 30
      (3) Rowan d. (19) Ursinus, 5-4 (2OT)
      (4) Messiah d. (16) Christopher Newport, 5-1
      Sunday, September 1
      (16) Christopher Newport d. (9) Rochester, 1-0


      Soccer (M)

      Friday, August 30
      (11) Cortland d. (4) Rochester, 3-2 (OT)
      Sunday, September 1
      (3) Chicago tied (12) St. Thomas, 0-0 (OT)


      Soccer (W)

      Friday, August 30
      (5) William Smith d. (10) Hardin-Simmons, 1-0 (2OT)
      (8) TCNJ d. (14) Swarthmore, 1-0
      Saturday, August 31
      (3) Washington-St. Louis tied (15) Hope, 0-0 (OT)
      (7) Messiah d. (24) Stevens, 2-0
      (16) Johns Hopkins d. (11) Lynchburg, 2-0



      Friday, August 30
      (1) Emory d. (8) Johnson & Wales, 3-1
      (2) Calvin d. (23) Ohio Northern, 3-1
      (22) Christopher Newport d. (3) Juniata, 3-2
      (4) UW-Eau Claire d. (22) Christopher Newport, 3-1
      (19) Berry d. (11) Ithaca, 3-2
      (23) Ohio Northern d. (13) Illinois Wesleyan, 3-0
      (17) Trinity, Texas d. (15) Mary Hardin-Baylor, 3-1
      Saturday, August 31
      (2) Calvin d. (13) Illinois Wesleyan, 3-0
      (3) Juniata d. (4) UW-Eau Claire, 3-0
      (6) Wittenberg d. (13) Illinois Wesleyan, 3-0
      (6) Wittenberg d. (23) Ohio Northern, 3-2
      (18) Gustavus Adolphus d. (10) Aurora, 3-0
      (25) Saint Benedict d. (15) Mary Hardin-Baylor, 3-1
      (17) Trinity, Texas d. (25) Saint Benedict, 3-1

      4. B1G Jump from the NESCAC

      Austin Hutcherson, a 6-6 guard at Wesleyan (Conn.) University, will become the second men's basketball player to go from the NESCAC to the Big Ten as he transferred to Illinois last month. How did he get from Middletown, Conn. to Champaign, Ill.? Easy. A YouTube video and a some USB drives.

      >> Where Did You Go, Mr. Robinson? Duncan Robinson played one season at Williams before transferring to Michigan.

      5. Today's Tweet

      6.  1 fad thing: Wine in a can

      Trending, per the Wall Street Journal: Wine in a can, which "comes with a liner whose exact composition is a closely guarded secret." (Subscription)
      • Sales of canned wine rose by nearly 80% this year over last, per Nielsen.
      • The idea is to extend vino to beaching and other outdoor activities.
      • "Still, wine in bottles saw over $15 billion in sales this year and wine in boxes $1.4 billion, while sales of wine in cans amounted to about $90 million."
      - courtesy of Axios

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