Monday, May 2, 2022

In the Wake of Lia Thomas, What Will NCAA Do?


written by STEVE ULRICH
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III
>> Good Monday morning. Hope you had a great weekend. Let's get ready for Conference championship week.

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1. In the Wake of Lia Thomas, What Will NCAA Do?

A woman smiles and flashes a peace-sign while holding a wooden NCAA trophy. Her hair is wet. She is wearing a jacket draped over her shoulders. She is standing in front of blue and silver balloons and blue press-conference backdrop with the NCAA logo on it.
by Tom Bartlett, Chronicle of Higher Education | photo by Rich Von Biberstein, Associated Press

"Lia Thomas, a University of Pennsylvania swimmer and a transgender woman, won first place last month in the 500-yard freestyle at the NCAA Women’s Division I Swimming and Diving Championships. Her victory was celebrated in some quarters; one op-ed writer likened her to the baseball legend Jackie Robinson. Others saw her as undermining women’s sports, and many of her own teammates anonymously objected to her participation. Over the course of the season, Thomas became the face of a national debate about how to balance fairness and inclusion in women’s sports.

That controversy over Thomas’s participation may be over, but tough questions about the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s rules for transgender athletes still haven’t been answered. Arriving at a way forward will require interpreting a growing and contested body of science while navigating a fraught political environment."

>> Situational Awareness: "Back in January, the NCAA’s Board of Governors updated its transgender-participation policy, voting for a “sport-by-sport approach” that puts the onus on each sport’s national governing body to determine its own rules. In other words, a tennis player might have to meet a different standard than a runner or a bowler. Many of those governing bodies don’t have any rules on transgender athletes, while some have rules that are uselessly vague or outdated. (If a governing body doesn’t devise a policy, the NCAA has said it will default to that sport’s international rules instead.)"

>> What's Next: "On [the Women’s Sports Policy Working Group] website the working group offers policy suggestions, including workarounds like allowing transgender athletes who retain male advantages to participate in practices but not in direct competitions. Nancy Hogshead-Makar has spoken with members of sports-governing bodies who are trying to figure out what to do next. “They’re all listening,” she says. “We’re sending them information as fast as we can.”

>> Reality Check: "Anne Rohlman, director of policy, education, and strategic engagement at the NCAA Sport Science Institute says that the sport-by-sport approach doesn’t mean each organization can make whatever rules it wants. The NCAA’s committee on competitive safeguards will also have a say and could, in essence, overrule certain provisions in a governing body’s policy. For instance, the NCAA might decide that three years is too long to require testosterone suppression — and nix that rule. Or it might decide that a particular testosterone level is unreasonably low."

>> What They're Saying: “We use that policy as a starting point to inform our conversation,” she says. “I think that piece has been lost both on our membership and in the public.”

>> Continue Reading


2.  Want to Play College Sports? Listen Up

Terion Moss
by Steve Craig, Portland Press Herald

"After five years of college basketball at two universities, playing for three head coaches, former Gorham High star Emily Esposito has some advice she wishes she could give her teenage self. Advice she thinks any high school recruit should hear.

“Don’t be sold a lie. Don’t let coaches tell you everything you want to hear. Press them a little bit,” said Esposito, who played at Villanova University before transferring to Boston University. “I wish I had been more bold and brave to use my voice.”

While some college athletes will reach their teenage dreams of championships and all-star status, for most, the experience is more mundane. Hours of practice time and strength training. Mandatory study halls. Constant competition for playing time. Setbacks and injuries. The wins and bonds with teammates are still rewarding, and lifetime memories will be forged. But, especially at the NCAA Division I level, college sports are a business and the athletes are often expendable."

>> Court Awareness: "Being able to play a sport in college is a dream for many high school athletes, one that often starts at a young age. Slightly more than 7 percent of high school athletes will reach that goal, according to NCAA Research statistics, with only about 2 percent playing at the Division I level."

>> Why It Matters: “If I could tell high school athletes one thing, it’s a huge time commitment between morning workouts, going to class, a mandatory study hour for eight hours a week, and then you have practices and other team requirements. Every day is a busy day,” said wrestler Bradley Beaulieu, who spent his freshman year at Division I Old Dominion before transferring to the University of Southern Maine.

“With college, playing a sport and wanting to have a social life is challenging all at once,” said Terion Moss, who played basketball at the University of Maine as a freshman and is now starring at Division III UMaine-Farmington."

>> Between The Lines: “A lot of high school athletes want to go D-I and that’s a great goal to have, but at the end of the day, you’re going to get the same experience at a smaller school,” Beaulieu said. “High school athletes should consider that. What I found, at the lower D-3 level, it’s still pretty tough no matter who you’re competing against.”

>> The Key Stat: “It was a great choice for me,” Moss said. “At Maine, (you were) mostly surrounded by D-I athletes. So now I’m meeting people who have come here for school from different states. It’s a different experience for me and a good experience.”

>> Read More

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3. Passing "Q" School

The following teams have qualified for the 2022 NCAA Division III Men's and Women's Golf Championships which get underway May 10-13.

The complete field will be announced on Monday.

Men (53 teams)
Pool A (32): AMCC (Penn State Altoona), ARC (Luther), ASC (#10 Mary Hardin-Baylor), AEC (Cabrini), CC (Franklin & Marshall), CCIW (#8 Illinois Wesleyan), CCC (Endicott), Empire 8 (St. John Fisher), GNAC (Saint Joseph's, Maine), HCAC (Transylvania), Landmark (Drew), Liberty (New York U.), MASCAC (Salem State), Michigan (Hope), MACC (Stevenson), MACF (Stevens), Minnesota (Saint John's), NESCAC (Hamilton), NAC (Husson), NCAC (#20 Kenyon), NACC (#24 Aurora), Northwest (#16 Willamette), Ohio (John Carroll), ODAC (#18 Hampden-Sydney), PAC (Westminster), Skyline (Farmingdale State), SLIAC (Webster), SAA (#15 Oglethorpe), SCIAC (#12 Claremont-M-S), UEC (Rosemont), USA South (#1 Methodist), UMAC (Bethany Lutheran), 
Pool B (2): TBA
Pool C (19): TBA

>> Men's Announcement

Women (29 teams)
Pool A (24): ARC (Dubuque), ASC (#20 Mary Hardin-Baylor), CC (Marymount), CCIW (#23 Carthage), HCAC (Rose-Hulman), Landmark (Drew), Liberty (#12 New York U.), Michigan (Saint Mary's), MAC (York), Minnesota (#18 St. Catherine), NESCAC (#9 Amherst), NCAC (#16 Denison), Northeast (Cortland), NACC (Aurora), Northwest (#5 George Fox), Ohio (Otterbein), ODAC (#10 Washington and Lee), PAC (Westminster), SLIAC (Grinnell), SAA (#7 Centre), SCIAC (#8 Pomona-Pitzer), USA South (#3 Methodist), UMAC (Northwestern), WIAC (Whitewater).
Pool B (2): TBA
Pool C (19): TBA
Individuals (6): from non-qualifying teams TBA

>> Women's Announcement


4. Going Dancing 


Conference tennis championships were held last weekend with many more set for this Saturday-Sunday. 

Men (44 teams)
Pool A (36)
: AMCC (Penn State Behrend), ARC (May 7), ASC (May 7), CC (May 8), CUNYAC (Baruch vs. Hunter, May 5), C2C (May 8), CCIW (May 7), CCC (May 7), Empire 8 (May 7), GNAC (Colby-Sawyer vs. E. Nazarene, May 7), HCAC (May 8), Landmark (May 7), Liberty (May 8), LEC (May 7), Michigan (May 6), MACC (May 7), MACF (May 7), Midwest (Grinnell), Minnesota (May 7), NESCAC (May 8), NEWMAC (MIT), NJAC (#30 TCNJ vs. UW-Whitewater, May 7), NCAC (#13 Denison), NACC (May 8), Northwest (#16 George Fox), Ohio (May 7), ODAC (May 8), PAC (Grove City), Skyline (May 7), SAA (#33 Sewanee), SCIAC (May 7), SCAC (#8 Trinity), UEC (St. Mary's), UAA (#2 Chicago), UMAC (May 7), USA South (#12 North Carolina Wesleyan)
Pool B (1): TBA
Pool C (7): TBA

Women (49 teams)
Pool A (39): AMCC (Pitt-Greensburg), ARC (Luther), ASC (#29 Texas-Dallas), CC (May 8), CUNYAC (Baruch), C2C (May 8), CCIW (North Central), CSAC (Cairn), CCC (Endicott), Empire 8 (Nazareth), GNAC (Colby-Sawyer), HCAC (Transylvania), Landmark (May 7), Liberty (May 8), LEC (Rhode Island College), Michigan (May 7), MACC (May 7), MACF (May 7), Midwest (#31 Grinnell), Minnesota (May 7), NAC/UEC (Husson vs. St. Mary's, May 8), NESCAC (May 8), NEWMAC (May 8), NJAC (TCNJ), NAC (Husson), NCAC (#30 Denison), NACC (May 8), Northwest (#37 Linfield), Ohio (May 7), ODAC (May 8), PAC (Franciscan), Skyline (Sarah Lawrence), SCIAC (May 7), SAA (#7 Sewanee), SCAC (#13 Trinity), SUNYAC (Oneonta), UAA (#1 Chicago), UMAC (May 7), USA South (Piedmont), WIAC (#33 Whitewater)
Pool B (1): TBA
Pool C (9): TBA

Important Dates
Thursday, May 5 - Regional Rankings
Monday, May 9 - Team Selections

5.  Calendar

2-5 - DIII SAAC Mental Health Social Media Campaign (#SelfLoveIsNotSelfish)
3 - Division III webinar
4 - Baseball, Lacrosse, Softball, Tennis Regional Rankings
8-9 - Lacrosse, Softball, Tennis Selection Announcements
12-13 - NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship Committee
17-18 - Student-Athlete Reinstatement Committee
17-18 - Championships Committee


6.  Lightning Round  High Voltage on Apple iOS 14.6

Ryan McCarty, Penn State Abington
  • Penn State Abington senior Ryan McCarty tied a Division III record by clubbing four home runs as the Nittany Lions defeated Gallaudet, 21-9. He was 6-of-7 on the day with nine RBI. McCarty is the 19th player to hit four round-trippers in a game.
  • Webster sophomore RHP Alek Elges tossed the first perfect game in program history as the Gorloks blanked Greenville, 5-0. He fanned seven batters in recording the fifth no-hitter for Webster.
  • Southern Maine RHP Joshua Joy twirled a no-hitter in the Huskies' 7-0 win against Keene State. It is the first nine-inning no-no in program history. Joy walked three and struck out 11.
  Track and Field
  • The Loras quartet of Carter OberfoellRyan HarveyWyatt Kelly and Mike Jasa teamed up to break the NCAA DIII record in the men’s 4×800 relay at the Drake Relays. Oberfoell (1:53.21), Harvey (1:51.45), Kelly (1:52.78) and Jasa (1:50.81) combined to get the baton around the Blue Oval in 7:28.28.
  Golf (W)
  • Wellesley's Katie MacVicar had a hole-in-one on the par-3 17th hole in the first round of the Liberty League championship. The junior finished second overall, falling shy by a single shot.
  • Kaitlin Shirshac twirled a no-hitter as UMass Dartmouth defeated Western Connecticut, 4-0, in the nightcap of a twinbill. She walked one and fanned 13 batters.
  Happy Birthday
  • Cake and candles to Stuart Fritz, head baseball coach at Hope; Frank Rossi, producer of In The (D3FB) Huddle); and Kyle Kwiat, assistant wrestling coach at Ohio Northern.
  • Do you know of someone celebrating a birthday this month? Drop us a line at

    7.  Comings and Goings
    Open Mailbox with Raised Flag on Apple iOS 14.2  Thanks for starting your day with us.

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