Thursday, August 12, 2021

Four for DIII


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

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1. Four for DIII

Sims appointed to NCAA constitution committee - UW Oshkosh Today University  of Wisconsin Oshkosh

"The NCAA Board of Governors announced its appointments to the Constitution Committee on Tuesday. The committee consists of 23 members representing all three divisions.

It will identify the core principles that define college sports and propose a new governance model that allows for quicker change without sacrificing broader values, while either reaffirming or redefining those values. The committee will be chaired by former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, one of five independent members of the Board of Governors and former president at Texas A&M.

Leadership bodies from all three NCAA divisions provided nominations for the review committee. From those nominees, the board appointed university presidents, conference commissioners, athletics directors and students from Divisions I, II and III, and independent members of the Board of Governors.

Representing Division III

  • Brad Bankston, commissioner, Old Dominion Athletic Conference
  • Fayneese Miller, president, Hamline University
  • Megan Cook, student-athlete, Colorado College
  • Darryl Sims, director of athletics, Wisconsin-Oshkosh

>> What They're Saying: "Each of the appointees offers important insight on the transformation that's needed for the future," NCAA President Mark Emmert said. "The time is now for substantive change. And future change must focus on serving student-athletes."

>> What's Next: The Constitution Committee will begin its work immediately. In November, the committee will submit for membership feedback a working draft of its proposals. The special constitutional convention will convene no later than Nov. 15. The final proposals will be provided to the NCAA Board of Governors by Dec. 15 and scheduled for votes in January by the full membership at the NCAA Convention.

>> See the entire committee


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2. Highest Returns in 35 Years

by Emma Whitford, Inside Higher Ed

"College and university endowments posted their strongest annual performance in 35 years, according to new data from Wilshire Trust Universe Comparison Service reported by Bloomberg.

The median return before fees was 27 percent in the 2021 fiscal year, which ended on June 30. By comparison, U.S. college and university endowments saw a 2.6 percent median return in fiscal year 2020 and a 6 percent median return in fiscal year 2019. College endowments of at least $500 million -- of which there are about 200 -- reported a median return of 34 percent in fiscal 2021, higher than the overall average.

“Whenever the stock market does well, endowments -- just like other institutional investors -- tend to do very well. So last fiscal year -- the year that ended June 30 -- the stock market as measured by the S&P 500 did about 40.8 percent, which is astounding,” said Ken Redd, director of research and policy analysis at the National Association of College and University Business Officers. “So whenever you get a major stock index like that rising, we tend to get very high endowment returns.”

>> Court Awareness: "Other assets, including venture capital, private equity funds and hedge funds, also saw increased performance last fiscal year. Large endowments of $500 million or more are more likely to be invested in venture capital and private equity, whereas small endowments worth $50 million or less invest primarily in U.S. equities, according to the most recent endowment study by NACUBO."

>> Be Smart: "The skyrocketing endowment funds don’t translate into cash for colleges and universities. While one-time gains are exciting, colleges do not set their endowment spending strategies based on single-year returns. Instead, they typically use rolling endowment averages to determine how much money to spend from their endowment each year."

>> Keep Reading



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3.  On Their "A" Game
CoSIDA Conference

The College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) announced their 2020-21 Academic All-America Track and Field/Cross Country teams.

Graduate student Katie Bacher of MIT earned the Academic All-America® Women’s Track & Field/Cross Country Team Member of the Year honor for the second consecutive year. A graduate student at MIT, she is studying computer science with a 4.0 cumulative GPA. In 2020, she graduated from MIT with bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and computer science with a 4.0 GPA.

Bacher competed in four NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships in her career and was a four-time NEWMAC All-Conference performer in cross country. She is a four-time United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-Region honoree in cross country.

The 16 members of the women’s first team possess a 3.91 average GPA.

>> Complete women's team

Senior Yorai Shaoul of MIT, an electrical engineering major from Ra’anana, Israel with a 3.92 grade-point average, was named the Academic All-America® Men’s Track & Field/Cross Country Team Member of the Year. 

Shaoul is an eight-time NCAA Division III National Championship qualifier competing in both the long jump and triple jump. He won both the Division III indoor and outdoor triple jump championships in 2019 and was the runner-up in the long jump at the 2019 NCAA Division III Outdoor Championships. He finished second in the triple jump as a freshman at the 2018 NCAA Division III Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

The 17 members of the men’s track & field/cross country first team carry an average GPA of 3.86.

>> Complete men's team


4.  Socially Acceptable

Did you know that 19 Division III schools have Instagram followings of more than 5,000, including four north of 8,000? We will have a deeper dive on social media in DIII in an upcoming edition.

  1. Gallaudet @gallaudetbison - 11,769
  2. Mount Union @purple raiders - 10,647
  3. Johns Hopkins @hopkinssports - 8,782
  4. Endicott @ecgulls - 8,543
  5. Norwich @norwichcadets - 7,630


5.  Comings and Goings


6. Field of Dreams

MLB's Field of Dreams ballpark has ties to Iowa and the White Sox
by Associated Press

"More than three decades after “Field of Dreams” seeped into the country’s cultural consciousness, with a one-year delay caused by the pandemic, one of the most famous cornfields in Hollywood history finally gets the opportunity to host real major league ball.

The proud and quintessential Midwestern state, usually only in the spotlight every four years during presidential campaigns, will be hosting a Major League Baseball game for the first time when the White Sox and Yankees play at a temporary venue built for about 8,000 fans in tiny Dyersville — population “about 4,400, we’re hoping for in the next census,” said mayor Jim Heavens.

>> Worth Noting: "This has been an especially hot and dry summer in this part of the country, so an irrigation system was installed to keep the prime (corn) crop in good shape for its time to shine on national TV — between 10 and 12 feet high."

>> What's Your Line: Your favorite from the movie ...

  1. Is this heaven? No. It's Iowa.
  2. If you build it, he will come.
  3. Go the distance.
  4. Ease his pain.
  5. We're keeping this field.

>> Continue Reading

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