REALIGNMENT MOCK DRAFT .:. ON THE CLOCK: Big South (R2, #12), AAC (R1, #8) [pending trade approval], Big12 (R1, #11)

Hello There, Guest! (LoginRegister)

Post Reply 
What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
Author Message
Statefan Offline
Special Teams
*

Posts: 679
Joined: May 2018
Reputation: 36
I Root For: .
Location:
Post: #1
What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
I know it's early and the P12 often picks up kids late, but looking at one site and comparing the upper third of the ACC, B10, SEC, and P12 you get _

ACC 5 schools 1, 5, 7, 8, 10
SEC 5 schools 2, 3, 4, 6, 13
B10 5 schools 9, 12, 18, 19, 21
P12 4 schools 16, 27, 37, 47

The numerical mid point for the four conferences are:

ACC 20-22
SEC 17-23
B10 36-39
P12 55-62

The bottom thirds of each are:

ACC 49-81 average of 70
SEC 34-52 average of 43
B10 60-84 average of 70
P12 70-104 average of 80


The SEC is the clear leader, and the ACC is substantially ahead of the B10. The B10 trails both the ACC and SEC but is still close to the ACC. The P12 is a relative dumpster fire.


I'm not casting aspersions, but what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies? Texas and OU would make for a quick fix, but if that does not happen, are the headed for structural inferiority the way the ACC did in the early 1960's with 800 SAT rule?
(This post was last modified: 06-07-2019 09:28 PM by Statefan.)
06-07-2019 09:26 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply

IWokeUpLikeThis Online
All American
*

Posts: 3,947
Joined: Jul 2014
Reputation: 167
I Root For: NIU, Chicago St
Location: South Side
Post: #2
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
Only realistic option besides standing pat is adding schools from Texas to create a new pipeline and allowing the original PAC-8 its own division. BXII would have to fall apart. Tech/TCU/BU/UH if none got picked up.
06-08-2019 12:02 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Mav Offline
Bench Warmer
*

Posts: 237
Joined: Jul 2016
Reputation: 11
I Root For: Omaha
Location:
Post: #3
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
Many of those sites skew in favor of quantity rather than quality. I went by average star rating and the PAC-12 had 2 in the top 10.

They're fine. California and Arizona are both very fertile recruiting grounds. They just have a smaller number of recruits than the southeast at the moment. Let's at least wait until November to start ringing alarm bells.
06-08-2019 12:11 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
bullet Online
Legend
*

Posts: 33,560
Joined: Apr 2012
Reputation: 911
I Root For: Texas, UK, UGA
Location:
Post: #4
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
And California kids just don't committ as early. That just seems to be the recruiting culture there.
06-08-2019 08:55 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
usffan Offline
All American
*

Posts: 3,885
Joined: Mar 2004
Reputation: 292
I Root For: USF
Location:
Post: #5
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
Nevermind the noted accuracy of recruiting rankings...

USFFan
06-08-2019 08:57 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Wolfman Offline
All American
*

Posts: 4,147
Joined: Nov 2011
Reputation: 157
I Root For: The Game
Location: Raleigh, NC
Post: #6
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
Recruiting tends to be cyclic. Up one year, down the next. When you average the numbers across a conference they get even more skewed.

There is a lot of talent out west.
06-08-2019 10:08 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply

SoCalBobcat78 Online
1st String
*

Posts: 1,542
Joined: Jan 2014
Reputation: 53
I Root For: TXST, UCLA, CBU
Location:
Post: #7
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
"I'm not casting aspersions, but what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?"

What? Seriously? The 2019 All-NBA team, with a total of 15 players, had five players that played their high school basketball in California (James Hardin, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, Damian Lilliard and Russell Westbrook). No other state or foreign country had more than one.

The starting quarterbacks in the Super Bowl were California high school kids (Brady and Goff). The Super Bowl MVP, Julian Edelman, played his high school football in California. In the 2019 MLB draft, the first pick was from Oregon State and the #3 pick was from Cal. UCLA had 13 players drafted in the 2019 MLB draft, 12 California kids and one from Washington. The Pac-12 has had the top pick in the last two NBA drafts. The UCLA women just won a world series with a roster full of California kids, beating an Oklahoma team whose best players were from the west coast.

The problem is keeping kids on the west coast. According to Rivals.com, five of the top seven kids in their 2020 football rankings are from the west coast. One has verbally committed to Clemson, one to LSU and the other three are uncommitted. The Pac-12 needs to keep these kids on the west coast. But there is plenty of talent on the west coast in all sports.
06-08-2019 11:52 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Kit-Cat Offline
Heisman
*

Posts: 5,441
Joined: Jun 2002
Reputation: 9
I Root For: Championships
Location:

CrappiesCrappiesCrappiesCrappiesCrappies
Post: #8
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
They become the Ivy League of the west and stop offering athletic scholarships.

07-coffee3
06-08-2019 11:54 AM
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Statefan Offline
Special Teams
*

Posts: 679
Joined: May 2018
Reputation: 36
I Root For: .
Location:
Post: #9
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-08-2019 11:52 AM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  "I'm not casting aspersions, but what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?"

What? Seriously? The 2019 All-NBA team, with a total of 15 players, had five players that played their high school basketball in California (James Hardin, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, Damian Lilliard and Russell Westbrook). No other state or foreign country had more than one.

The starting quarterbacks in the Super Bowl were California high school kids (Brady and Goff). The Super Bowl MVP, Julian Edelman, played his high school football in California. In the 2019 MLB draft, the first pick was from Oregon State and the #3 pick was from Cal. UCLA had 13 players drafted in the 2019 MLB draft, 12 California kids and one from Washington. The Pac-12 has had the top pick in the last two NBA drafts. The UCLA women just won a world series with a roster full of California kids, beating an Oklahoma team whose best players were from the west coast.

The problem is keeping kids on the west coast. According to Rivals.com, five of the top seven kids in their 2020 football rankings are from the west coast. One has verbally committed to Clemson, one to LSU and the other three are uncommitted. The Pac-12 needs to keep these kids on the west coast. But there is plenty of talent on the west coast in all sports.

I wasn't talking basketball. If Rivers and Wilson had full staffs, they might have some of Brady's jeweler. If a kid skips college, he skips college. He's not there to fill seats and win games.

The real depth of the question is that of changing demographics, not to toss a rock at some NBA player from California.
06-08-2019 04:48 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
cuseroc Offline
Super Moderator
*

Posts: 13,893
Joined: Mar 2005
Reputation: 376
I Root For: Syracuse
Location: Rochester/Sarasota

Donators
Post: #10
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
The PAC will be fine. Someone already mentioned these things being cyclical. Well the PAC is in a down cycle right now. Every league goes thru this.
06-08-2019 06:00 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
zoocrew Offline
Special Teams
*

Posts: 510
Joined: Mar 2019
Reputation: 17
I Root For: PITT, NAVY, MBB
Location:
Post: #11
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
You’re watching what happens
06-08-2019 07:59 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply

BruceMcF Offline
Heisman
*

Posts: 6,439
Joined: Jan 2013
Reputation: 130
I Root For: Reds/Buckeyes/.
Location:
Post: #12
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-08-2019 12:02 AM)IWokeUpLikeThis Wrote:  Only realistic option besides standing pat is adding schools from Texas to create a new pipeline and allowing the original PAC-8 its own division. BXII would have to fall apart. Tech/TCU/BU/UH if none got picked up.
Written like a sports fan ... problem in that specific scenario is the Pac12 might not be interested in Baylor ... but the underlying logic is sound. If the premise of the OP is accepted, then the two alternatives are (1) decline and (2) add schools from the closest big recruiting pool to their border.

And the schools that they would be looking at would be schools with some history behind them, so former SWC/Big8 schools that are available after a collapse of the Big12 would be the most likely place to look.

But the Pac-12 is also a chronic sufferer of the disease of pointless academic snobbery, even if it doesn't have as severe a case as the BigTen, which will make taking the second path problematic.
06-08-2019 10:08 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
SoCalBobcat78 Online
1st String
*

Posts: 1,542
Joined: Jan 2014
Reputation: 53
I Root For: TXST, UCLA, CBU
Location:
Post: #13
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-08-2019 04:48 PM)Statefan Wrote:  
(06-08-2019 11:52 AM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  "I'm not casting aspersions, but what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?"

What? Seriously? The 2019 All-NBA team, with a total of 15 players, had five players that played their high school basketball in California (James Hardin, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, Damian Lilliard and Russell Westbrook). No other state or foreign country had more than one.

The starting quarterbacks in the Super Bowl were California high school kids (Brady and Goff). The Super Bowl MVP, Julian Edelman, played his high school football in California. In the 2019 MLB draft, the first pick was from Oregon State and the #3 pick was from Cal. UCLA had 13 players drafted in the 2019 MLB draft, 12 California kids and one from Washington. The Pac-12 has had the top pick in the last two NBA drafts. The UCLA women just won a world series with a roster full of California kids, beating an Oklahoma team whose best players were from the west coast.

The problem is keeping kids on the west coast. According to Rivals.com, five of the top seven kids in their 2020 football rankings are from the west coast. One has verbally committed to Clemson, one to LSU and the other three are uncommitted. The Pac-12 needs to keep these kids on the west coast. But there is plenty of talent on the west coast in all sports.

I wasn't talking basketball. If Rivers and Wilson had full staffs, they might have some of Brady's jeweler. If a kid skips college, he skips college. He's not there to fill seats and win games.

The real depth of the question is that of changing demographics, not to toss a rock at some NBA player from California.

So you are talking about football related to demographics? So what is your question or your point? You said "what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?" You cannot really believe that. Do you know how ridiculous that sounds? If you really believe that, then why are schools from back east recruiting west coast football players?
06-08-2019 10:22 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
BruceMcF Offline
Heisman
*

Posts: 6,439
Joined: Jan 2013
Reputation: 130
I Root For: Reds/Buckeyes/.
Location:
Post: #14
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-08-2019 10:22 PM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  So you are talking about football related to demographics? So what is your question or your point? You said "what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?" You cannot really believe that.
That's an empirical question: how many of the PAC-12 recruits "who can play" are coming from east of the Rockies? It's not something I follow, but if it's really easily contradicted, contradicting it would be more solid than claiming it's unbelievable.

Quote: Do you know how ridiculous that sounds? If you really believe that, then why are schools from back east recruiting west coast football players?
That would be the other half of the problem, wouldn't it? If many schools from coast to coast are successfully fishing in the California recruiting pool and, as the OP claims, the PAC-12 schools are not being very successful in recruiting top shelf prospects from east of the Rockies, that adds up to a squeeze on the top shelf talent in the PAC-12.

Unless you read the claim as saying that the California players that PAC-12 schools are getting are the ones who can't play east of the Rockies ... which would make the problem even worse. But makes the rhetorical question "why are schools back east recruiting west coast football players" a bit odd, since it would be, obviously, that they are recruiting west coast football players because they are getting the best ones.

As third option, if you wished you could choose read the claim as saying that the west coast players can't play east of the Rockies ... I just don't see why you would choose to read it that way, when the other readings makes more sense.
(This post was last modified: 06-09-2019 04:42 AM by BruceMcF.)
06-09-2019 04:25 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Mav Offline
Bench Warmer
*

Posts: 237
Joined: Jul 2016
Reputation: 11
I Root For: Omaha
Location:
Post: #15
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
https://247sports.com/college/stanford/S...l/Commits/
Stanford's done a good job pulling talent from Texas and ACC country.

https://247sports.com/college/oregon/Sea...l/Commits/
Oregon has recruits from all over the South.

https://247sports.com/college/washington...l/Commits/
Washington's proving you don't really need to go east of the Rockies, pulling all of their kids from California, Washington, Hawaii, and Utah and getting the #16 class.

https://247sports.com/college/usc/Season...l/Commits/
USC has almost all of their talent from California, Arizona, and Hawaii and still has the #20 class.

OP's full of it. California's so talent-rich that it can feed the programs without major national clout just fine, and the programs that do have it can go into SEC and ACC country and pull in recruits.
06-09-2019 11:27 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
CardinalJim Offline
Welcome to The New Age
*

Posts: 7,769
Joined: Apr 2004
Reputation: 680
I Root For: Louisville
Location: Planet Red
Post: #16
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
It’s not being able to recruit. Plenty of talent on the west coast and in the west. It’s developing the talent that’s the problem.

This is a review of draft picks by conference the last 10 years.

If you’re on a staff in the east, you use this against PAC programs. If you’re an 18 year old on the west coast, with NFL aspirations, you listen.
(This post was last modified: 06-09-2019 12:11 PM by CardinalJim.)
06-09-2019 12:10 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply

Statefan Offline
Special Teams
*

Posts: 679
Joined: May 2018
Reputation: 36
I Root For: .
Location:
Post: #17
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-08-2019 10:22 PM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  
(06-08-2019 04:48 PM)Statefan Wrote:  
(06-08-2019 11:52 AM)SoCalBobcat78 Wrote:  "I'm not casting aspersions, but what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?"

What? Seriously? The 2019 All-NBA team, with a total of 15 players, had five players that played their high school basketball in California (James Hardin, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, Damian Lilliard and Russell Westbrook). No other state or foreign country had more than one.

The starting quarterbacks in the Super Bowl were California high school kids (Brady and Goff). The Super Bowl MVP, Julian Edelman, played his high school football in California. In the 2019 MLB draft, the first pick was from Oregon State and the #3 pick was from Cal. UCLA had 13 players drafted in the 2019 MLB draft, 12 California kids and one from Washington. The Pac-12 has had the top pick in the last two NBA drafts. The UCLA women just won a world series with a roster full of California kids, beating an Oklahoma team whose best players were from the west coast.

The problem is keeping kids on the west coast. According to Rivals.com, five of the top seven kids in their 2020 football rankings are from the west coast. One has verbally committed to Clemson, one to LSU and the other three are uncommitted. The Pac-12 needs to keep these kids on the west coast. But there is plenty of talent on the west coast in all sports.

I wasn't talking basketball. If Rivers and Wilson had full staffs, they might have some of Brady's jeweler. If a kid skips college, he skips college. He's not there to fill seats and win games.

The real depth of the question is that of changing demographics, not to toss a rock at some NBA player from California.

So you are talking about football related to demographics? So what is your question or your point? You said "what happens if the P-12 falls into a permanent mode of not being able to recruit players who can play east of the Rockies?" You cannot really believe that. Do you know how ridiculous that sounds? If you really believe that, then why are schools from back east recruiting west coast football players?

Apologies for not setting up the thread with a clear premise.

Take this recent article as a substitute for that work.

SHARE
I. The Coach
On a brilliant October afternoon in San Francisco, a high school football coach named Danny Chan watched as his varsity offense ran sets against a phantom defense composed of a couple players brandishing tackling dummies. “We’re a fringe program,” said Chan, the head coach at Lowell High, which is widely viewed as the most academically rigorous public secondary school in the city. The visuals from that day backed Chan’s contention: Gatorade bottles were stacked haphazardly in a shopping cart used to transport them to the practice field, and the varsity players took turns in the compact shed that serves as a weight room.

While the members of Lowell’s freshman-sophomore team practiced at one end of the field, Chan coached the smaller cluster of varsity players at the other. Altogether, Lowell’s varsity roster numbered 18 players, including a pair of girls, which meant offensive reps against a full defense were a luxury he could no longer afford. This shabby survivalist approach has been the reality at Lowell for decades, ever since Chan himself played football here in the late 1980s. Sometimes when Chan meets Lowell alumni and tells them he’s the school’s varsity football coach, they seem surprised that their alma mater even has a football team.

To comprehend the slow but unmistakable erosion of football in California, it’s best to begin on the periphery, in the places where the impact is already being felt—places like Lowell, where last fall brought one of the toughest seasons yet. “This might be the worst year,” Chan predicted to a school newspaper reporter back in August, and it never got much better. All season, Lowell—which has a student body of more than 2,500—struggled to suit up the 18 healthy players required by the city to compete. The Cardinals won a single game, against a crosstown rival that was also struggling with its roster numbers, and the school’s principal forfeited their season finale against undefeated Lincoln High, citing safety concerns. (At the two Lowell games I attended, the cheerleaders outnumbered the football players.) The program is getting harder and harder to sustain, Chan tells me, and though there are many reasons why, he says they all circle back to one central theme: Chan feels like he’s competing not just against his own hard realities. He also feels like he’s competing against the increasingly negative public perception of the sport itself.

“It’s totally under attack. And it’s under attack because [of] biases of what football [is].” —Danny Chan, Lowell High football coach
Chan works outside of Lowell as a private-school educator, and considers his program largely autonomous. He’s expected to operate with a limited headcount and sparse resources, so to have any hope of keeping up with traditional city powers like Lincoln (where Mike Holmgren was once both a player and coach) and Galileo (which once produced a transcendent running back named Orenthal James Simpson), he’s installed a rush-heavy offense straight out of the 1920s. The kids he gets, he says, are the “crazy and nutty ones” who aren’t afraid of taking on a near-insurmountable challenge. “I know at other schools, football is ‘the thing,’” Chan says. “Not here.”

The son of immigrants, Chan was once one of those crazy and nutty kids. Football, for him, provided a path toward assimilation. It was a quintessentially American pursuit, a sport that required sacrifice and teamwork, even if his parents didn’t fully understand its importance. But now, he says, fear has overtaken opportunity, particularly among parents who, amid a flood of headlines about brain injuries and CTE, seem especially reluctant to allow their children to play football. In 2017, Chan had a star running back who played in that fall’s first game, then said his mom didn’t want him playing football anymore. Just like that, he was gone.

Upon hearing this, I ask Chan the question that has become a kind of political litmus test in the United States, but particularly in the most progressive state in the union, a place that has historically been one of the most fertile producers of football talent.

I ask him whether he thinks football is under attack.

“Yes,” Chan says. “It’s totally under attack. And it’s under attack because [of] biases of what football [is].”

II. The Numbers
You can find stories like Chan’s in nearly every state, as football’s place at the center of the American experience is being openly questioned. Over the past decade, high school football participation has dropped 6.6 percent nationwide, according to the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). Much of that decline can be attributed to the violent nature of the sport, and the attention being paid to the repercussions of that violence.

The headlines made by Boston University CTE studies, Will Smith movies, and the 2012 suicide of Hall of Famer Junior Seau have intensified arguments and sowed political division about the future of football. On one side are those who say that the sport—particularly at the youth and high school levels—is inherently dangerous and deserves careful regulation, if not an outright ban. On the other are those who say this is yet another example of government overreach that represents the softening (and imminent downfall) of America. And nowhere have those politics been on starker display than in California, which has continued to produce many of the country’s best high school football players, even as it’s transformed into the bluest state of them all.

It’s not surprising that the three most populous states—California, Florida, and Texas—also traditionally churn out the highest numbers of college and professional football players. What’s intriguing is how each state’s football culture has been shaped by its overarching systems: Texas is defined by its sheer scale of talent, Florida has become the default repository for speed, and California has become an incubator for quarterbacks in progressive offenses.

And while Texas and Florida have also wrestled with decreasing participation in high school football, the numbers don’t tell quite the same story as they do in California. California had 104,224 high school football players at 1,029 schools during the 2009-10 season, according to NFHS. By 2017-18, those numbers had dropped to 94,286 players at 877 schools. Since 2015, the number of players in California has fallen by about 3 percent each year. Over that same time period, the number of participants and football-playing schools in Florida and Texas—both far redder states on the political map—have more or less held steady.

North of San Francisco, in Marin County—where Rams quarterback Jared Goff grew up—Novato High School went winless in both 2017 and 2018. Novato isn’t a “fringe program” like Lowell; it’s produced four NFL players in its six-decade history. Up in wine country, Healdsburg High dropped its team this season. Even in Southern California, a traditional recruiting hotbed, once-powerful programs are struggling to piece teams together. There is a startling consistency to the narrative: Roger Blake, executive director of the California Interscholastic Federation, tells me that schools all over the state are facing these issues, regardless of demographics. It’s happening in urban areas like San Francisco and San Diego, and it’s happening in rural outposts far from the major cities. It’s happening even as California’s overall participation rates for high school sports have reached all-time highs, as participation in boys’ soccer has grown by roughly 19 percent over the last 10 years. The question now is whether there’s any hope for a football revival, or whether this is simply the new normal.

It’s too early to see an impact of those diminishing numbers on college recruiting or at the professional level, because the bottleneck from high school to college to the NFL is so narrow, says Roger Pielke Jr., head of the Sports Governance Center at the University of Colorado. There are still more than a million kids playing high school football nationwide. But Pielke’s research has revealed that America’s moment of “peak football” appears to be firmly in the past. The average high school football team has lost a total of three players since 2016 alone, and if that kind of attrition continues, it could serve as a tipping point for schools (both high schools and colleges) that either have small enrollments or place less of an institutional emphasis on football.

And while football advocates like to point out that the sport is safer than ever before, the underlying concern remains: How safe can it ever truly be? Since 2010, there have been between 12 and 18 on- and off-field football-related deaths each year at the youth, high school, and college levels, according to research by the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury; those deaths are now being reported on and scrutinized more closely than ever. Combine those headlines with the long-term concerns about how football’s concussive violence might affect a young person’s brain, and it leads to an overarching sense of fear that inherently dovetails with the nature of the sport itself. As that fear spreads, and studies like the recent one led by Berkeley researchers continue to suggest that there are brain-altering dangers associated with football, social scientists like Pielke have raised larger, more existential questions. Will football soon become further divided by culture, region, and social class? Is its very existence now an intractable political wedge issue?

And is it possible that, at some critical juncture, an unabashedly progressive state like California will effectively legislate tackle football out of existence?

III. The Activists
In February 2018, a pair of California state legislators introduced a bill that proposed a ban on tackling in youth football for kids younger than 12. Both of those legislators happened to be Democrats, which an activist for youth-sports safety named Kimberly Archie immediately realized would reinforce the existing political perceptions surrounding this issue. Namely, it would make it seem like there can be no middle ground: Either you believe in the sanctity of football, or you’re a radical liberal seeking to destroy it.

The funny thing, Archie says, is that she once campaigned for Sonny Bono when he ran for House of Representatives as a California Republican in the 1990s, and she was president of the Young Republicans when she was in college. (Her nickname, she says, was “Mrs. Limbaugh.”) Archie grew up as a cheerleader in Red Bluff, California, a rural and conservative town of roughly 14,000 people where football held an important place, like it does in many small communities across the United States. “Football was a big part of our town and how people viewed how other people were,” she says. “Football people were different than other people who were not jocks.”

By the time the bill was introduced, though, Archie was viewed as an enemy by many of the same people whose politics she once embraced. She has long been an advocate for safety in youth sports, and worked as a consultant on a legal case about NFL head injuries. But it wasn’t until the months after her son, Paul Bright Jr., died in a motorcycle accident in 2014 that she began to zero in on youth football. Bright was 24 years old at the time, and Archie says he had been exhibiting increasingly erratic behavior for a few years prior. Eventually, a study of his brain at Boston University revealed that he had early-stage CTE, which Archie believes developed when he played youth football from age 7 to 15. She’s spent years advocating that children should have rights to basic safety measures; in her mind, the ideal solution would be for them to play flag football up to the age of 14.

“Now all of a sudden I’m a liberal because I have common sense and I look at science? Has our country gone into the gutter so far that you can troll grieving parents and it’s OK?” —Kimberly Archie, youth sports safety activist
But people see her these days—a hard-driving advocate with a legal background who cofounded an awareness group called Faces of CTE; a woman who’s been compared to Erin Brockovich and who, along with a group of moms, is suing Pop Warner over negligence and fraud—and they make assumptions. The first is that she wants to abolish football as an American institution. The second is that anyone who hates football as much as she does must be a bleeding-heart liberal. “Now all of a sudden I’m a liberal because I have common sense and I look at science?” she says. “Has our country gone into the gutter so far that you can troll grieving parents and it’s OK? ... How could a topic about child safety become political?”

And yet it has. After California legislators Kevin McCarty and Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher introduced Assembly Bill 2108, known as the “Safe Youth Football Act,” the tension only ratcheted up. The bill proposed several safety measures for youth football, and the most controversial among them was the ban on tackling for players under 12 years old. To a certain contingent of youth football coaches and parents, that measure felt like another example of the government overreach and out-of-control regulation they were tired of seeing in California. Soon after the bill was announced, a Pop Warner official in Southern California called Chris Fore, a longtime high school football coach from the town of Apple Valley, and the next day Fore set up the Twitter account @savecafootball. The account galvanized a lobbying effort and led to the creation of a Facebook group where parents could share stories and vent, often with a blatantly political tilt.

“I don’t think it’s a party-line issue,” says Steve Famiano, a youth football administrator in Apple Valley and one of the moderators of the Facebook group. “But some people would like to make it out be that.”

McCarty pulled the bill within a couple of months, before it was ever brought for a vote. This didn’t surprise Archie, who says she had nothing to do with the drafting of McCarty’s bill, despite some Save Youth Football members attempting to prove otherwise. Archie initially supported the bill, though she says she told McCarty after he introduced it that he was going to “get eaten alive by those football guys” and that “the NFL and the football industry have been controlling the narrative for a hundred plus years.” Archie says McCarty responded by telling her to “stick to being a grieving mom.” Eventually, Archie’s organization withdrew its support of the bill, saying that its message and strategy were confusing. (McCarty did not respond to a message to his office seeking comment.)

The Save Youth Football movement celebrated the pulling of the bill; many of them believed they’d rescued the sport from the slippery slope of government impingement on individual rights. On the day the bill was pulled, one Save Youth Football member, Joe Rafter, filmed a video from New Jersey in which he teared up as New York’s One World Trade Center loomed in the background. And then Rafter and others, presuming that McCarty’s bill was only an opening salvo, immediately began to steel themselves for the next fight.

“I don’t wrap my kids in bubble wrap,” says Rafter, a businessman who got involved with the Save Youth Football movement soon after McCarty introduced his bill. Rafter lives in Marin County, played football at Division III Catholic University in Washington, D.C., and got involved with the local youth football scene, he tells me, because he wanted his sons to have the same opportunities that he did. While he comes across as anything but an anti-science zealot, something triggered him when he heard about the youth tackle football ban; for Rafter, football symbolized all the lessons about teamwork and overcoming fear that he took into his career as an adviser to business leaders. Beyond that, it became an issue of parental rights: If he wanted his kids to play tackle football, and the kids themselves wanted to play tackle football, why should the government have a right to stop them?

“I want to raise my kids to face into the risks. But I guess to some people, that makes me a Neanderthal.” —Joe Rafter, Save Youth Football member
“California is the most liberal state in the country,” Rafter says. “San Francisco is the most liberal city in the most liberal state. And generally, the people who play football play it because they want to. They want that for their sons. … Some people accept the risk that life offers. Some people choose to manage that risk in different ways. … I want to raise my kids to face into the risks. But I guess to some people, that makes me a Neanderthal.”

As we sit at a table outside the Ferry Building in San Francisco, Rafter seems to be choosing his words carefully. But for him, this is an emotional issue. Football is a “character-development tool,” he says, and the violence inherent to the sport is part of that development. Flag football is fine, Rafter tells me. He just sees flag football and tackle football as two completely different sports and believes that by banning youth tackle football, you’re banning football as we know it. At one point during our conversation, he refers to activists like Archie as “the anti-football mafia.” When I repeat the phrase back to him, he apologizes and says, “That’s the first time I’ve ever used that term.”

Rafter says he’s open to certain safety compromises—limiting tackling time in youth practices, for instance, something that’s part of a proposed new bill his current organization has sponsored. He’s not ignorant of the science; he just contends that it’s in its nascent stages, that certain studies may be flawed or inaccurate, and that there’s not enough evidence to implement a full tackling ban at the youth level. He says that activists like Archie are instilling a public panic and have no interest in compromise, and that their comparisons between letting children play football and exposing them to lead paint or cigarette smoke are based largely on fearmongering. Football, Rafter says, is already safer than it was when he played a generation ago.

“I’m not against football existing. But why would parents play Russian roulette with their kids’ brains? Maybe they need to ask themselves, ‘Why is a 9-year-old bashing heads so important to me?’” —Kimberly Archie
“That’s total bull****,” Archie tells me over the phone. “So it went from a level 10 to a level 9?”

For Archie, the issue is simple—why should parents be allowed to take risks with their children’s lives, even if the science is still progressing? If those parents get their way and end up being wrong, she says, another generation of kids could be subjected to traumatic brain injury. If she gets her way and ends up being wrong, she says, where’s the harm?

“It’s like if we don’t have football in every hometown, we’re going to become something we don’t want to be,” she says. “And I’m not against football existing. But why would parents play Russian roulette with their kids’ brains? Maybe they need to ask themselves, ‘Why is a 9-year-old bashing heads so important to me?’

“Football is important because we made it important. If we made soccer the center of the universe, then it would be the center of the universe.”

And this, too, is essentially an echo of California’s own history.

IV. The History
In 1906, as the powers that governed college football—along with president Theodore Roosevelt—sought to stem a crisis of violence that culminated in the death of Union College player Harold Moore, a pair of Northern California universities dropped the sport and replaced it with something else. For nearly a decade, Cal and Stanford attempted to make rugby the centerpiece of their athletic programs. Benjamin Ide Wheeler, the president at Cal, declared that “football must be made over or go.” Football was too commercial, too violent, too antithetical to the college’s mission, according to Wheeler and his Stanford counterpart, David Starr Jordan; rugby, they felt, would be both safer and a better representative of the moral values they hoped to impart both to their students and young people throughout California. They reached out to other California schools in hopes that they would do the same. To an extent, it worked: USC dropped football after the 1910 season. Soon after, a number of high schools followed suit, and the decision had a major impact statewide.

For the most part, the rest of the country either ridiculed or ignored California’s intransigence. A few nearby colleges, including St. Mary’s College, the University of Santa Clara, and the University of Nevada, also switched to rugby, but the spiritual center of both football and academia was still located in the East. Advocates of football referred to rugby as a “pink tea party,” criticizing the lack of aggressive tackling and saying that it wasn’t fit for “real men.” Daily newspapers ran cartoons that derided rugby as an effeminate sport. The prohibition lasted for more than a decade, and along the way, something interesting happened. According to author Roberta J. Park, the American version of rugby eventually took on many of what Wheeler viewed as “the objectional features of football,” including a reliance on bulk and tackling over speed and skillful ballhandling.

On November 22, 1919, in the wake of rules changes that had largely altered the public perception of the sport, Stanford and Cal faced each other in a football game for the first time since 1905. Something about the sport proved so central to the American ethos—and the California ethos, as part of a state that prides itself on constant reinvention—that it simply wouldn’t go away. More than a century later, on some of the most progressive college campuses in California, that still appears to be the case.

The funny thing is that Nadav Goldschmied felt that same powerful connection to American football when he emigrated from Israel to the United States in 1998 to get an advanced degree in psychology. “I thought football was the best game ever,” he tells me. “I have a basketball background, and to me, this was like basketball on steroids.”

Goldschmied got his PhD at South Florida, wrote about the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Super Bowl team for an Israeli newspaper, and then wound up as a professor at the University of San Diego in 2011. One day, while watching a show about NFL collisions with his wife’s sister, who was a nurse, Goldschmied saw her grimace. He began to wonder whether he’d neglected the sport’s hidden costs. He thought about it more after his son was born eight years ago. Over the years, as he read more about CTE, he realized there was no way he’d ever let his son play, even if he desperately wanted to. Why, he began to wonder, should anybody be allowed?

And so roughly a year ago, Goldschmied teamed with a pair of colleagues—one a history professor, the other a physics professor—and introduced a resolution to ban USD’s football program. The resolution was nonbinding, meaning the effect would have largely been symbolic and required several more steps to have any impact. But at a school that regularly competes for conference championships in the FCS (and that kick-started Jim Harbaugh’s head-coaching career in 2004), that symbolism might have garnered the kind of attention that Goldschmied hoped would at least begin a protracted conversation. Instead, the faculty voted it down, 50-26, with 30 abstentions. And there seems to be no will to prolong the discussion any further.

“It’s astonishing to me that people who are educated in the sciences, who can read an empirical investigation with all its disadvantages and are able to assess it proficiently, would not take it to the next step and at least make the effort to bring about change.” —Nadav Goldschmied, researcher
This is the part that boggles Goldschmied’s mind: Why, he says, shouldn’t this conversation be had at institutions of higher learning? Why shouldn’t schools like USD be leading the way? And why aren’t the faculty members at any other schools, either inside or outside of California, asking the same questions?


The answer may be as simple as tracing the bottom line: For major colleges, football is a moneymaking enterprise, and for smaller schools like USD, it’s a powerful recruiting and public-relations tool. Even at certain high schools, football has become a lucrative product. But just as Harvard president Charles Eliot continually (and futilely) denounced football more than a century ago, Goldschmied now finds himself wondering when the academics within the university system will muster the courage to question how an increasingly troublesome sport comports with its larger educational mission. “I’m appalled that there’s no more efforts done just like the one we did,” Goldschmied tells me. “It’s astonishing to me that people who are educated in the sciences, who can read an empirical investigation with all its disadvantages and are able to assess it proficiently, would not take it to the next step and at least make the effort to bring about change.”

Maybe, Goldschmied wonders aloud, his efforts came too soon. Maybe it will take a seismic event, like the death of Harold Moore in 1905, to cut through the politics, even in a state like California. (The last gubernatorial candidate to propose a decreased emphasis on football in California was LSD pioneer and ex-Harvard professor Timothy Leary, who, when announcing his candidacy in 1969, called football a “speed and booze game,” and advocated for baseball as “a gentle marijuana game.” He was sentenced to prison for drug possession soon after.) Before he died, Kimberly Archie’s son had caught on with her cause to make youth sports safer and told her she might have to wait until a parent who was wealthy or politically powerful lost their own son.

“Mom,” she says he told her, “wait till the wrong kid dies.”

V. The Future
For now, the political divide over football persists in California, particularly on the over 5,500-member Save Youth Football message board. There, the most extreme advocates often post about what they view as the degradation of the game, spearheaded by left-leaning politicians like Kevin McCarty or activists like Kim Archie and fueled by what they label as “pseudo-science.” Along with several other leaders of Save Youth Football, Rafter’s new organization, the California Youth Football Alliance (CAYFA), seems to be staking out more moderate ground. A CAYFA-proposed bill to limit the amount of contact time in practice for youth football leagues statewide is sponsored by a Democratic politician. Whether those incremental steps will gain any traction is yet to be seen; both Rafter and Archie implied that there may be no way to conduct a reasonable dialogue about an issue that has become so blatantly politicized.

“Much like many things in our society right now, everyone’s getting entrenched in their position and vilifying the other side.” —Joe Rafter
“Much like many things in our society right now,” Rafter says, “everyone’s getting entrenched in their position and vilifying the other side.”

“We’re putting ourselves out there and being a whipping post for the crazies out there,” Archie says, “all the zealots who think you’ve gotta play football to make America great again, or we’re all going to wither away and die and not be able to send our men off to war and that China will take over America.”

So what will happen next? It’s possible that flag football will eventually displace tackle football among youth, and the numbers will go back up as we come to terms with the risks involved for those in high school and beyond; in fact, the case for youth flag football is increasingly being made by coaches and NFL veterans like John Madden and Drew Brees, who has said he won’t allow his own children to play tackle football until middle school. But without knowing how science might advance, or whether equipment might evolve, it’s also possible to imagine football becoming an increasingly regional sport that’s centered even more in the Southeast and is slowly de-emphasized on the West Coast. Within the past three years, Georgia has nearly overtaken California as the third-largest college football recruiting state in the country.

It’s easy to imagine football being played primarily by wealthy private schools or well-subsidized public schools that can afford to invest in the most expensive safety measures (and weather the changes in the insurance market), or by athletes from underprivileged communities who are seeking a way out. A school like Lowell, for instance, doesn’t need football to survive.

On the practice field, Danny Chan tells me that one of his best players sat out most of the year while in concussion protocol, citing this as proof that things aren’t the same as they used to be when all those 1960s and ’70s-era NFL players—whose brains wound up at Boston University—were in their prime. When that parent of his star running back pulled her child from football in 2017, Chan questioned why she didn’t lobby the city’s public schools to ban the sport altogether. Or do you only care about your own kid? he asked her.

This is the crux of the philosophical disagreement, one that bleeds into our modern political debate about paternalistic government overreach and the perceived existence of the “nanny state.” During my conversation with Archie, she points to car seats for children as an example of how our safety standards have evolved over time. And during my conversation with Rafter, he brings up car seats as a way of pointing out that we’ve adapted to modern standards without outlawing driving altogether. So whose responsibility is it to mitigate that risk, and how far should we go in mandating these safety measures? And what do we lose in making these choices?

“Football, in particular, offers communities things of value,” Rafter says. “It’s hard to measure, except through stories and testimonials. I can’t put it in a medical or scientific document. Nobody’s allowing us to have that conversation. But that’s a piece that would be a huge loss, in the worst-case scenario, in the state of California.”

The question, then, is whether you believe that those stories and testimonials depend on the existence of football, or that you feel they’re merely an echo of the communities themselves. Maybe football will someday reinvent itself in a progressive manner, the way it did at the turn of the 20th century. Maybe our cultural and scientific progress as a society means that we should eventually leave it behind. All those years ago, when Stanford and Cal dropped football in favor of rugby, Roberta J. Park wrote that the school’s presidents presumed they were promoting a safer game. But Park also made another, more curious observation: [b]The games we play don’t really influence our morality. They just reflect who we are.[/b]
(This post was last modified: 06-09-2019 02:21 PM by Statefan.)
06-09-2019 02:10 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Stugray2 Online
1st String
*

Posts: 2,263
Joined: Jan 2017
Reputation: 153
I Root For: tOSU SJSU Stan'
Location: South Bay Area CA
Post: #18
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-08-2019 12:02 AM)IWokeUpLikeThis Wrote:  Only realistic option besides standing pat is adding schools from Texas to create a new pipeline and allowing the original PAC-8 its own division. BXII would have to fall apart. Tech/TCU/BU/UH if none got picked up.

None of those school is acceptable. The P12 standards are the same as the B1G and SEC. Flagship or equivalent, AAU membership or at least high R1 status.

Texas fits that, Texas A&M fits that, Oklahoma fits, Kansas fits. Colorado State is close, BYU partially fits. But when you add recruiting only Texas and Texas A&M fit. You could argue for a 2nd school from your list, with Tech and TCU decidedly ahead of the other two.
06-09-2019 02:30 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Statefan Offline
Special Teams
*

Posts: 679
Joined: May 2018
Reputation: 36
I Root For: .
Location:
Post: #19
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
To be more blunt - what happens when all the middle and upper middle class white kids play lacrosse? Who is left to support the local middle and high school with that funding element now attached to another sport, not to mention girls sport? When urban areas can;t find enough kids to play and rural areas can;t find enough kids to field a team will it become like Orange County NC, home of UNC, where high school football had to be dropped due to lack of players? Trump has already politicized football, what happens when Dems and Libs can no longer watch without being called hypocrites?

As the players more and more represent the less affluent segments of society those same lefties that used to enjoy football will be bashed over it even more.

Trends in the United States start on the West Coast. Back here in the colonies we remain rooted in our ways.

Carolina didn't just cut 13,000 seats out of Kenan Stadium for the hell of it. It's lack of interest and quite a bit of it is gendered lack of interest (what happens when you allow too many girls into your college).

If this was 1980, given the success of Clemson's program, they would be adding 20K seats to go to 100K, even NC State would be adding 12K to go to 70K.

The demographic time bomb regarding football will hit the west coast first, then the upper mid west, then the northeast.


By and large, Americans like football because they like war games. We yearn to have been in France on the Feast of Crispian and say "see these scars - I got them with Harry - the King".

Appalachian peoples are Highland and Ulster Scots tossed out of the UK mixed with Germans tossed out by the 30 years war and the fail revolution of 1848. Black folks brought here from Africa in chains have been at war with the ptb here for 400 years. Scratch anyone with North Sea, Baltic Sea, and or Mediterranean Sea blood and you find a Pirate, a Viking, a Goth, a Pict, a Moor, a Roman, or a Carthaginian all spoiling for a battle.

This is why football is what it is in America. Tocqueville would recognize it straight away.
(This post was last modified: 06-09-2019 02:40 PM by Statefan.)
06-09-2019 02:32 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
SoCalBobcat78 Online
1st String
*

Posts: 1,542
Joined: Jan 2014
Reputation: 53
I Root For: TXST, UCLA, CBU
Location:
Post: #20
RE: What happens to the P12 if they can't recruit?
(06-09-2019 12:10 PM)CardinalJim Wrote:  It’s not being able to recruit. Plenty of talent on the west coast and in the west. It’s developing the talent that’s the problem.

This is a review of draft picks by conference the last 10 years.

If you’re on a staff in the east, you use this against PAC programs. If you’re an 18 year old on the west coast, with NFL aspirations, you listen.

This was the 2018 NFL opening day rosters by FBS Conference:

https://www.ncaa.com/news/football/artic...fl-rosters

SEC 335
Big Ten 239
ACC 228
Pac-12 210
Big 12 123
American 100
Mountain West 63
C-USA 63
Independent 40
MAC 39
Sun Belt 20

In the 2018 NFL draft, 10 of the first 34 players selected played their high school football in the west:

Sam Darnold, Josh Allen, Josh Rosen, Vita Vea, Kolton Miller, Rashad Penny - California
Austin Corbett, Will Hernandez - Nevada
Leighton Vander Esch - Idaho
Taven Bryan - Wyoming

Bryan signed with Florida. Five of the first 15 picks were from California, four of the first 15 from the Pac-12. I guess Statefan is not aware of these numbers. Plus, I still don't understand what demographics has to do with football talent in the west?

Coaching staffs are going to use whatever advantage they have or are perceived to have to pluck recruits out of different regions. I have no problem with that. Tom Hermann recruited four players from California and two from Arizona in his 2019 class. Hermann is a very good coach and he can use the fact that he played high school and college football in California to his advantage. Austin is a great place to live and go to school. Chip Kelly recently recruited a top quarterback from New Hampshire. Kelly played high school and college football in New Hampshire. Whatever it takes to get the talent to your campus.
06-09-2019 02:44 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply 




User(s) browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)


Copyright © 2002-2019 Collegiate Sports Nation Bulletin Board System (CSNbbs), All Rights Reserved.
CSNbbs is an independent fan site and is in no way affiliated to the NCAA or any of the schools and conferences it represents.
This site monetizes links. FTC Disclosure.
We allow third-party companies to serve ads and/or collect certain anonymous information when you visit our web site. These companies may use non-personally identifiable information (e.g., click stream information, browser type, time and date, subject of advertisements clicked or scrolled over) during your visits to this and other Web sites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services likely to be of greater interest to you. These companies typically use a cookie or third party web beacon to collect this information. To learn more about this behavioral advertising practice or to opt-out of this type of advertising, you can visit http://www.networkadvertising.org.
Powered By MyBB, © 2002-2019 MyBB Group.