Tag: College Sports

Tim Tebow Has Bigger Fish to Fry


A little story… I moved to Tennessee when I was twelve days shy of 21 years old, and enrolled at Lee University at 22. I moved there mere months after UT won the national title, so the whole state was painted in orange…well, even more than normal at least.

I didn’t grow up a college football fan. If a game was on Saturdays, Dad and I would watch, but it wasn’t appointment TV. Appointment TV was the Chicago Bears…and the Boston Celtics when Bird was around, but that’s another story for another day. I said to myself that I wouldn’t get myself into this SEC religion. I’m not getting into this SEC religion. I was adamant about this.

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President Trump should grab the words and posturing videos from Secretary Esper and General Milley and make them live with them in a way they really do not want. They have given him the perfect justification to strip away all military trappings from professional and college sports. These organizations are proclaiming that they are now […]

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In a strange time, Jack does something new: Discuss sports! ChatSports Analyst Tom Downey joins Young Americans to discuss how he got into sports journalism, and how coronavirus is affecting both college and professional sports.

Weigh Enough


It’s called “swing.” Swing is a term that describes a perfectly timed, perfectly balanced racing shell in motion. It is the goal of every crew ever formed in the centuries of the sport’s existence, and it is difficult. Getting eight men to move as one is hard enough. When you put those eight men in a vessel less than 24” wide and 60 feet long, face them backward, tell them to pull on an oar as hard as they can, and continue pulling while discomfort mounts to unendurable levels, the task goes from monumental to just shy of impossible.

There was no good reason that our crew should find anything resembling swing. In September, we had entered the year with a promising crew of over 30 men, fielding four eight-man crews with coxswains – the small man or woman who sits in the back of the boat facing forward; steering, and commanding the cadence and race strategy. The fall season is for learning and refining technique, and above all, establishing your spring racing crew; the real races begin in March and finish in May. It is natural to suffer a certain amount of attrition over the fall; some men will be lost to injury, others to studies, and others just choose to lay down the oar in favor of less demanding activities. That particular year, however, the fall race season was a meat grinder. When I returned from winter break early for camp – our two weeks long, three-a-day training regimen, of the more than 30 rowers that started the year, there were only 12 of us left; nine oarsmen and three coxswains.

We had lost all of our biggest, best, and most experienced rowers. Because size, height in particular is such an advantage, collegiate men’s rowing has separate divisions for lightweight and heavyweight rowers. The average weight of the crew that showed up to camp was only ten pounds over the average required for us to race as lightweights. Yet we were all so lean, there was no chance we could ever reduce our weight below that official cutoff. We were condemned to be a scrawny heavyweight crew pitted against boats of men whose size and power dwarfed our own. Half of us were just a step up from rookies, none of us were the strongest guys from the fall, and all of us knew that if by some reason our numbers dipped under eight men, we would be forced to sit out half of the spring races. The best and most prestigious races are for reserved for eight-man crews. Four-man boats are primarily for training, and four-man racing is usually considered second level racing; for those who can’t make the first and second varsity boat. Here we were, a small, young, sloppy bunch; never more than one injury away from a completely unsatisfactory season of racing fours. This was going to be a building year and that was that.

The Dire Consequences of the Northwestern Football Decision


It is commonly supposed that the recent decision by National Labor Relations Board Regional Director Peter Sung Ohr — allowing college football players at Northwestern University to unionize — may not matter all that much, for the Northwestern players can always decline Ohr’s invitation, even if the National Labor Relations Board decides to uphold his rather novel decision.

That benign assumption is mistaken. The key point  is that Ohr’s decision basically held that the common law definition of employment —whereby one person receives a wage in exchange for taking the direction of another — is sufficiently broad that the Northwestern dispute becomes a footnote in a larger institutional struggle. I have already explained why I think that Ohr’s decision represents a frightful error here and here. But there is much more to worry about.