Thursday, January 2, 2020

Mental Health of Students

JANUARY 2, 2020 | written by STEVE ULRICH
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III

Our goal is to keep you - the influencers in DIII athletics - 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.

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1. Mental Health of Students

Pictured here is Tyler Hilinski, a former quarterback at Washington State who took his life in early 2018. It was later found he was suffering from CTE. (Hilinski Hope Foundation website)

At the recent Learfield IMG College Intercollegiate Athletics Forum presented by Sports Business Journal, the hot topic wasn't NIL or the College Football Playoff format.

Rather, it was the genuine concern among athletic directors, conference commissioners, and other stakeholders in the emotional and mental well-being of student-athletes. And the critical need for universities at all levels to invest in resources to attend to the mental health needs of their students.

When asked during his keynote address what areas of improvement were most pressing at a national level, NCAA President Mark Emmert cited “health and wellness”, saying “the mental health issue is gigantic”.

>> Why It Matters: 35 percent of student-athletes access mental health support as compared to only 16% of the general student population.

>> Reality Check: Educating coaches, trainers, and student-athlete leadership groups is of tantamount importance in preventing tragedies. For example, as Mark Hilinski, co-founder of Hilinski's Hope Foundation, noted, you wouldn’t put an athlete on the field with a torn ACL. So why would you put a kid on the field if he/she is dealing with a mental health issue.

>> Be Smart: It’s all about resource allocation and prioritization, and the focus historically has rarely prioritized mental health.

>> Keep Reading with Patrick Rishe, founding director of the Sports Business Program at Washington-St. Louis.

>> Go Deeper: The Suicide of Teen Football Star Bryce Gowdy

2. Rivals 

Inspired by our friend Bob Quillman, we decided to include a list of the most-played rivalries in Division III basketball. The list includes all series of 200 games or more, entering the 2019-20 season.

We have found this to be challenging, as many schools don't have all-time series listings on their website and if they do, disagree on the number of games played (and won). Should you have changes (or additions), please pass them along. 
  1. Wesleyan-Williams, 238 (began 1901-02)
  2. Illinois Wesleyan-Millikin, 230 (1909-10)
  3. Geneva-Westminster (Pa.), 227 (1897-98)
  4. Amherst-Williams, 226 (1901)
  5. Franklin & Marshall-Gettysburg, 222 (1902)
  6. Knox-Monmouth, 221 (1907-08)
  7. North Central-Wheaton, 219 (1902-03)
  8. DePauw-Wabash, 215 (1906-07)
  9. UW Oshkosh-Stevens Point, 215 (1899)
  10. Hope-Kalamazoo, 211 (1913-14)
  11. Amherst-Wesleyan, 210 (1901-02)
  12. Albion-Alma, 204 (1912-13)
  13. UW La Crosse-River Falls, 204 (1910-11)
  14. UW Eau Claire-River Falls, 203 (1917)
  15. Calvin-Hope, 203 (1917-18)
  16. UW River Falls-Stout, 202
  17. Albion-Olivet, 201 (1910-11)

3.  Best of the Decade 

We conclude our "Best of the Decade" series with a look at the champions, runners-up and top four finishers in rowing. We hope you enjoyed the look back at the 2010s.

Champions: Bates (4), Williams (4), Trinity, Wellesley.

Runner-Up: Bates (5), Williams (2), Trinity, Wellesley, WPI.

Top Four Finishes: Bates (10), Wellesley (8), Williams (7), Ithaca (4), Trinity (4), William Smith (2), WPI (2), Hamilton, Pacific Lutheran, Wesleyan.


Would you like to sponsor this newsletter? Would you like to advertise an open position in your department for a head coach or administrator? Contact to get your job opening in front of decision-makers in small-college athletics.

4.   Betty Shellenberger

A true pioneer, Betty Shellenberger passed away at the age of 98. Her story is one for the ages and important in the annals of athletics for women.

Betty, known to friends as “Shelly” and born in her Germantown home, was one of the first Philly girls to get introduced to the sport of lacrosse, in 1933 as a middle schooler at Agnes Irwin School.

The list of her accomplishments is endless.
  • Inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame (1986)
  • Inducted as part of the Inaugural Class of the USA Field Hockey Hall of Fame (1988)
  • Inducted into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame (1994)
  • Inducted into the Eastern PA Chapter of the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame (1998)
  • Inducted into the Agnes Irwin School Athletic Hall of Fame (2005)
  • Inducted into Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame, (2009)
  • Inducted into Chestnut Hill College Hall of Fame (2011)
  • She was a member of the USA Field Hockey National team (1939-41, 1946-55, 1960); Her 17 years on the national team (some as a reserve) is the longest in USA Field Hockey history
  • She was an 11-year member of the USA National Lacrosse Team
  • She served as the President of the United States Women’s Lacrosse Association (1967-68)

>> Go Deeper on an incredible life with Chris Goldberg and


5. Previewing the Second Half 

Daniil Gerasimov has helped put Augsburg in the hunt for another MIAC title. (Photo courtesy of Augsburg Athletics)

The second half of the college hockey season begins tonight and U.S. College Hockey Online gets you ready with previews of the men's conference races in the MIAC, WIAC and NCHA.

>> West Region preview by Brian Lester,

6.  1 Wrestling Thing

If your New Year’s resolution is to join a sport, take inspiration from the growing number of American girls who are starting and joining female-specific wrestling teams. The Wall Street Journal reports that interest and participation have risen after more states launched wrestling championships specifically for girls, with Missouri experiencing a turnout eight times higher than the year before. While that state’s surge was notable, the National Federation of State High School Associations says it’s part of a much larger trend: Last season, there was a 28 percent increase in participation in girls wrestling across the country. 

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