PDA

View Full Version : Question...especially for Norm1909



davinchi
10-12-2009, 11:02 AM
I would like to hear peopl's input (especially Norm's) about DIII hockey. MY question is this:

Is DIII getting so big (meaning recruitment, promotion, attention to attendance, and the time commitment of its athletes) that it is getting away from the DIII philosophy?

Is the education of its participants getting compromised and their outlook on life (as being "Gods on campus" which is one way I heard it phrased) because of how big its getting?

In other DIII sports, regular high school graduates have a legitimate chance of participation. In DIII hockey it seems that the only road to that experience is through Canadian and US junior A. Even the MIAC schools which traditionally recruited HS athletes are turning to Junior.

The nature of DIII hockey seems have evolved to a lifetime commitment whereas it should be in addition to their college experience...not in lieu of.

The reason I am so interested in hearing Norm's ideas (in addition to everyone else's, please be assured) is that I have read his posts and have a tremendous amount of respect for his commentary as well as his ability to look at the big picture.

jerrynu26
10-12-2009, 11:06 AM
In other DIII sports, regular high school graduates have a legitimate chance of participation. In DIII hockey it seems that the only road to that experience is through Canadian and US junior A. Even the MIAC schools which traditionally recruited HS athletes are turning to Junior.


Does this mean you equate prep school to high school?

davinchi
10-12-2009, 11:14 AM
Sorry I overlooked that very important demographic. No I don't equate it. Top preps are still placiong guys to DI and also to DII (especially NESCAC) but even there I am seeing a decline. Maybe this is too broad of a generalization but I am seeing players turn their backs on some very good private schools and going junior because of their tunnel vision on getting to the NCAA. They are passing up some great educational opportunities, and also a chance to play very good hockey...better than regular HS...except in MN.

USA Hockey seems to trying to create a funnel to their national team program with all their Midget AAA initiatives. This will hurt preps. It shuts out a great number of potential players and goes against evreything Herb Brooks envisioned when he said that hockey needs to be grown at the grassroots level in all areas. IF a kid doesn't make a AAA team at the age of 12 then the tendency will be to just quit the game. It will hurt development of the game in a big way. Less players to choose from means less top end guys. I guess I am starting to open a whole new can of worms here...

norm1909
10-12-2009, 11:57 AM
I would like to hear peopl's input (especially Norm's) about DIII hockey. MY question is this:

Is DIII getting so big (meaning recruitment, promotion, attention to attendance, and the time commitment of its athletes) that it is getting away from the DIII philosophy?

Is the education of its participants getting compromised and their outlook on life (as being "Gods on campus" which is one way I heard it phrased) because of how big its getting?

In other DIII sports, regular high school graduates have a legitimate chance of participation. In DIII hockey it seems that the only road to that experience is through Canadian and US junior A. Even the MIAC schools which traditionally recruited HS athletes are turning to Junior.

The nature of DIII hockey seems have evolved to a lifetime commitment whereas it should be in addition to their college experience...not in lieu of.

The reason I am so interested in hearing Norm's ideas (in addition to everyone else's, please be assured) is that I have read his posts and have a tremendous amount of respect for his commentary as well as his ability to look at the big picture.

I think you just want to make me write:p ;)

It is interesting that you propose the possibility of DIII hockey “getting so big”, while many on this forum lament the diminishing “Zoo Crews” that once dominated many DIII arenas - which is not to say they are gone, but I believe most would agree are mostly shadows of their hey days.

You note, “recruitment, promotion, attention to attendance, and the time commitment of its athletes”, and those areas are certainly key areas to success in any sport. What is happening to DIII sports? IMO, increasing availability of mass communication, such as high-speed internet, immensely expanded TV channel bandwidth with the advent of digital satellite, digital cable converters and now even digit broadcasting, with the desire of new entrepreneurs to find profitable “Niche Markets”, and advertisers looking for exposure to their ideal “target market” have increased (among many other thing), exposure to sports. Coupled with the hype generated by some super athletes – Michael Jordon, Tiger Woods, Dale Earnhardt Sr, etc, mass promotion of athletic events – Olympics, Super Bowl, etc. has increased the general “top of mind awareness” of all sports.

With this increased public awareness, athletic departments realize they have the ability to highlight why they deserve funding - i.e. how can they maximize their value to the institution, particularly in light of ever threatening budget cuts. The athletic departments understand that their value to the institution’s mission is to create a positive public image for the institution helping to improve applications to the school so that the admissions officers can select the students most likely to succeed and thereby increase the schools accreditation and desirability. Individual coaches realize that in order to accomplish this, they must WIN, and to win they must recruit the best student athletes. As is the “nature of the beast” the “best student athletes” tend to be those who have made a “lifetime commitment” to the sport. Unfortunately, the number of employment opportunities that will provide a lifetime income is less than the number of student athletes desiring such opportunities – THIS is where Division III comes in. Division III offers opportunities to those student athletes who “ran with the big dogs” but didn’t quite keep up with the front of the pack. As evidenced on this forum with threads such as “DIII players in the Pros” and even “DIII players in the NHL”, some DIII athletes are able to continue their “lifetime commitment” beyond their DIII playing years, while others will continue that commitment through coaching paid and volunteer while pursuing their degree’s career path. For the vast majority, it is their educational accomplishments that will determine their future “lifetime success”.

Has DIII evolved? Yes, driven by economics, it has acquired many of the traits of a business, whereas at one point, it was more an extension of intramurals and sports clubs. Is this bad, I don’t think so, everyone, school budget officers and student athletes alike, make decisions based on only one thing – “The path of least resistance”, that is the path they believe is going to make their life easier (more fulfilling, less guilt) and as such, predators (recruiters) may occasionally, steer someone down a path not so ideally suited for a particular student athlete, but for the most part, I believe it is a win-win for all parties (stakeholders) involved.

NUProf
10-12-2009, 02:21 PM
I don't think the changes in DIII hockey are significantly different than those seen in other sports. In all sports there is an emphasis on recruiting that has evolved over the years. Teams are actively scouting and recruiting players now in a manner that is similar to the way that DI schools recruited athletes 30 years ago. Meanwhile, DI recruiting has "advanced" well beyond that. The emphasis on recruiting from juniors exists mostly because the junior system exists. If such a system existed in other sports, schools would use it.

I do think it is unfortunate that the concept of the "true amateur" seems to be gone from all DIII sports, but it is way closer to that concept than the (in my opinion) corrupt, over professionalized way in which DI athletics are now run. DI football, hockey, basketball, and baseball have all become unofficial parts of the minor league systems of those sports (especially football and basketball). We can't turn back the clock, but the relationship between academics and athletics has changed over the years at all levels.

norm1909
10-12-2009, 02:37 PM
I don't think the changes in DIII hockey are significantly different than those seen in other sports. In all sports there is an emphasis on recruiting that has evolved over the years. Teams are actively scouting and recruiting players now in a manner that is similar to the way that DI schools recruited athletes 30 years ago. Meanwhile, DI recruiting has "advanced" well beyond that. The emphasis on recruiting from juniors exists mostly because the junior system exists. If such a system existed in other sports, schools would use it.

I do think it is unfortunate that the concept of the "true amateur" seems to be gone from all DIII sports, but it is way closer to that concept than the (in my opinion) corrupt, over professionalized way in which DI athletics are now run. DI football, hockey, basketball, and baseball have all become unofficial parts of the minor league systems of those sports (especially football and basketball). We can't turn back the clock, but the relationship between academics and athletics has changed over the years at all levels.

I agree, and specifically cited "DIII" versus "DIII hockey", and while "the concept of the "true amateur" seems to be gone from all DIII sports" may also be true, every athlete WAS, a "true amateur" at some point.:cool:

Corruption though, is unfortunately another "nature of the beast" the beast of MONEY. In the words of British historian, Lord Acton (1834-1902), "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” And the quote goes on to say “Great men are almost always bad man.", to which we must hope, that the “smoke filled rooms” of the NCAA, establish at least some “checks and balances”, in fact, it may very well be, that DI provides a blessing for its little brother – DIII, as it attracts the worse of “the bad men”.:(

bayliner2555
10-12-2009, 02:46 PM
I agree, and specifically cited "DIII" versus "DIII hockey", and while "the concept of the "true amateur" seems to be gone from all DIII sports" may also be true, every athlete WAS, a "true amateur" at some point.:cool:

Corruption though, is unfortunately another "nature of the beast" the beast of MONEY. In the words of British historian, Lord Acton (1834-1902), "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” And the quote goes on to say “Great men are almost always bad man.", to which we must hope, that the “smoke filled rooms” of the NCAA, establish at least some “checks and balances”, in fact, it may very well be, that DI provides a blessing for is little brother – DIII, as it attracts the worse of “the bad men”.:(

:eek: WOW, seven commas in one sentence, WOW. :eek:

norm1909
10-12-2009, 02:53 PM
:eek: WOW, seven commas in one sentence, WOW. :eek:

Ok, 7 is a lucky number (in some cultures (http://www.luckymojo.com/number7.html));) :p

Hockey NutCase
10-12-2009, 05:25 PM
My 2 cents worth is that D3 hockey is not getting too big. Look at the top D3 LAX schools…their programs are way more intense recruiting-wise plus now play year-round Fall & Spring seasons, more than D3 hockey pgms today. D3 hockey is not compromising D3 institutions. Many club hockey teams play 2 to 3 times the number of games that D3 NCAA hockey teams play. These 'club' players seem to be pushing their education off balance more than their NCAA counterparts. The D3 season is still limited with a low number of maximum games allowed. On another note, you cannot blame the D3 schools or their coaches that MOST high school players today now prefer to play an extra PG prep year and/or 1-2 added years of Junior A & B hockey before they head off to start college. It’s a phenomena very unique to hockey only. I think this benefits the D3 colleges in 2 ways. Its easier on recruiting (more talented players & showcases around to pick from), and it adds more mature (older) student athletes onto the campus, not a bad thing. Enjoy it for what it is. I don’t know of any college feeling pressured or compromised or off-course educationally or reputation-wise because of its D3 hockey program. Does anyone know of one?

NUProf
10-12-2009, 05:31 PM
I agree, and specifically cited "DIII" versus "DIII hockey", and while "the concept of the "true amateur" seems to be gone from all DIII sports" may also be true, every athlete WAS, a "true amateur" at some point.:cool:

Corruption though, is unfortunately another "nature of the beast" the beast of MONEY. In the words of British historian, Lord Acton (1834-1902), "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” And the quote goes on to say “Great men are almost always bad man.", to which we must hope, that the “smoke filled rooms” of the NCAA, establish at least some “checks and balances”, in fact, it may very well be, that DI provides a blessing for is little brother – DIII, as it attracts the worse of “the bad men”.:(

At least we have throughout DIII athletics only a few cases of athletes (in any sport) who use their college "career" solely as a stepping stone to fulfill pro ambitions in the way that so many players in the big four sports do in DI - play a season or two or even three (especially in baseball it's three because of MLB draft rules) and then exit (often with big bucks) to play pro. The only case I can even think of like that is Hince. For the most part DIII players are there for the purpose of getting an education along with continuing to compete in their sport at a high level.

Retirement is treating me well - not only do I find myself agreeing with Norm, I can even understand his most complicated postings :D

joecct
10-12-2009, 07:39 PM
My 2 cents worth is that D3 hockey is not getting too big. Look at the top D3 LAX schools…their programs are way more intense recruiting-wise plus now play year-round Fall & Spring seasons, more than D3 hockey pgms today. D3 hockey is not compromising D3 institutions. Many club hockey teams play 2 to 3 times the number of games that D3 NCAA hockey teams play. These 'club' players seem to be pushing their education off balance more than their NCAA counterparts. Hyperbole. That would mean ACHA is playing 50-75 games. No way. Most of the big boys play 34 - 40 games - around the D1 model. Nobody plays > 40 RS games. If they are, please cite an example.


The D3 season is still limited with a low number of maximum games allowed. Which means that every game (OK, MOST every game, counts). Which means you can't take a night off. Works for me. I mean if D1 is 34, D2 would be 29/30, and D3 is 25, how many games do you want?


On another note, you cannot blame the D3 schools or their coaches that MOST high school players today now prefer to play an extra PG prep year and/or 1-2 added years of Junior A & B hockey before they head off to start college. It’s a phenomena very unique to hockey only. I think this benefits the D3 colleges in 2 ways. Its easier on recruiting (more talented players & showcases around to pick from), and it adds more mature (older) student athletes onto the campus, not a bad thing.Blame Shaun Walsh (everyone else does). He saw that the NCAA allowed 21 year old freshman and did very well getting them and winning with them. Monkey see, monkey do. What each person does with the 3 years of Junior post HS is up to them. Some pee it away and get into the wrong stuff, others apply themselves and search for the D1 dream as long as possible and then look @ D3 in the last year.

I'd also check out soccer and track to see the ages of the freshman.


Enjoy it for what it is. I don’t know of any college feeling pressured or compromised or off-course educationally or reputation-wise because of its D3 hockey program. Does anyone know of one?See (Vacated by the NCAA Committee on Infractions). Oh it happens, and I'm interested to see the financial aid audits and who is outside the "norm" (so to speak).

Not you, but somebody put D-II and NESCAC in the same sentence. You've caused apoplexy on 10 campuses. :)

norm1909
10-12-2009, 08:20 PM
... Retirement is treating me well -

At least until Oct. 15.:p


... - not only do I find myself agreeing with Norm, I can even understand his most complicated postings :D

My apologizes, I tried not to make it to complicated, but as verbose as it is, I suppose it is still somewhat complicated - I will try to clarify any points though, if asked.

Hockey NutCase
10-13-2009, 02:17 PM
Hyperbole accepted. My club hockey length of schedule comment was overexaggerated, but many ACHA D1 club teams (their closest level to D3 NCAA) did play 40 to 48 (Iowa St) games last year, started their season in Sept & ran it well into March. Just look on the ACHA website for the proof. That’s a pretty heavy hockey commitment (and burden on academics) for most fulltime college students, none of which are on scholarships & most have to pay to play club. Way more than all D3 NCAA student-athletes, who have a pretty nice academic-to-athletic balance going. Again, is any D3 college complaining otherwise?

joecct
10-13-2009, 06:44 PM
Let's see
D1 = 34
+ 2 Alaska games (36)
+ 8 games in conference tournament (2x3 + 2) (44)
+ 4 NCAA games (48).

Not bad!

joeyc3402
10-14-2009, 04:54 AM
Again, is any D3 college complaining otherwise?

Some NESCAC schools.

elbojpb
10-14-2009, 05:33 PM
In other DIII sports, regular high school graduates have a legitimate chance of participation. In DIII hockey it seems that the only road to that experience is through Canadian and US junior A. Even the MIAC schools which traditionally recruited HS athletes are turning to Junior. Soccer is another sport where club experience outweighs any High School resume. Very rarely will you see on any college roster kids who have played exclusively scholastic soccer.

In fact, year-round club soccer is becoming requisite for starting / starring on many High School teams. So this phenomenon is not unique to hockey, to the contrary, sports are now becoming big business.