Monday, October 12, 2020

College Football and COVID-19



OCTOBER 12, 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.  College Football and COVID-19

by Brent Schrotenboer, USA TODAY | photo by Mark Rogers, AP

"To avoid local public health restrictions during the pandemic, San Jose State University last week made a drastic move.

It decided to bus its football team 325 miles north to Humboldt County, where the Spartans started practicing on another college campus indefinitely while completing classwork online.

The relocation is designed to let the team have larger practices in a less restrictive county. Such preparation was “imperative” as the team’s season opener approached on Oct. 24, athletics director Marie Tuite said in a statement.

The team’s home county saw it differently.

“We are very disappointed to see any team going outside the county to circumvent a process that was put in place to ensure the safety of its players and staff,” Santa Clara County said in a statement to USA TODAY.

Such is the state of disruption these days in college football. It’s all over the map, including by bus."

>> Why It Matters: “We’re living in a big experiment right now,” said Yvonne Maldonado, an infectious disease expert at Stanford who consulted with the Pac-12 Conference on COVID-19. “We don’t know enough about (the novel coronavirus), and we don’t really understand what it does to young people.”

>> Between The Lines: “The disjointed response in college football is a reflection of a complete lack of a coordinated national response,” said Zach Binney, an epidemiologist at Oxford College of Emory University. “College football is pretty much like the rest of the country. Whether it should be played is a very complicated question.”

>> Of Note: "Such risk tolerance, financial concerns and public pressure all contributed to the consideration of how and when to return to college football. But a culture of science-based decisions also is part of the mix, or at least it should be according to their missions. For some, it's arguably a bigger emphasis than others."

>> Keep Reading 


2.  From DIII to the NBA

The 2020 NBA season came to a close last night as the Los Angeles Lakers won their 17th championship by defeating the Miami Heat in six games.

We have all enjoyed watching the exploits of the Heat's Duncan Robinson, who played one season of Division III ball at Williams College, as he makes a name for himself on basketball's biggest stage. 

It got us to wondering about how many DIII men have played in the NBA.

H/T to Don Stoner


3.  CWRU Endows AD Position

As Case Western Reserve kicked off its first virtual homecoming weekend at the annual Blue Block Party, university leadership announced a $2 million commitment from alumnus James C. Wyant (CIT '65), split between both athletics and education.

The gift will support the establishment of the James C. Wyant Athletic Department Endowment, the naming of the Athletic Director position as the James C. Wyant Athletic Director as well as the creation of the Frederick Reines Professorship, a shared position to be held jointly in the College of Arts and Sciences and Case School of Engineering.

Wyant, a renowned optical scientist, remains passionate about advancing the academic and athletic opportunities available to CWRU students. Lettering four years in track and cross country in his undergraduate years, Wyant became captain his senior year—although he never intended to become a student-athlete.

After several attempts by then-Coach Bill Sudeck to recruit the first-year student for a spot on the cross country team, Wyant eventually decided to attend a practice. The chance opportunity has turned into a lifelong relationship with his alma mater. As Wyant stated in making his most notable contribution to Case Western Reserve, a $4 million gift to help create the Wyant Athletic and Wellness Center, "I always hoped that someday I would make enough money to come back and help the athletic department that taught me so much, including the benefits of physical fitness in one's life."

>> Read the entire release


4. Weekend Stars

  • The Men in Blades - Andy Walker and Jake Adkins - presented the American Cancer Society of New England with a check for $30,735 from their cross-country trek this summer. Salute!
  • Luther won the American Rivers Conference women's tennis title, completing a perfect season with a 9-0 victory against Coe. It is the fourth regular-season A-R-C crown for the Norse in the last five seasons.
5.  Conference Call

Today we continue our look at Division III conferences with those formed before our parents' time.
Conference: Northwest Conference
Commissioner: Kimberly Wenger
Headquarters: Forest Grove, Ore.
  • Founded: 1926
  • Joined Women's Conference of Independent Colleges in 1984 to become Northwest Conference of Independent Colleges. Assumed current name in 1996.
  • Remaining Charter Members (5): Linfield, Pacific, Puget Sound, Whitman, Willamette
  • Core Members (4): Lewis & Clark (1938), Pacific Lutheran (1965), Whitworth (1970), George Fox (1996)
  • Oldest: Willamette (1842)
  • Largest: George Fox (2,483)
  • Smallest: Linfield (1,313)
  • Championship Sports: 20
  • Longest Trip: 405 miles (Whitworth to Willamette)

>> Tuesday: American Rivers Conference

sources: Google Maps, EADA

6.  Comings and Goings
7.  1 Golf Shot

The lie.

The shot.

courtesy PGA TOUR

These guys can play.

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