Thursday, July 19, 2007

Football and Teachers

While traveling in Des Moines, Iowa yesterday I read the USA Today at my hotel gym which included an article on the growing popularity of "7 on 7" football (that is "American" football my European friends not "soccer" -- by the way, thanks a lot for exporting David Beckham to the USA to play soccer in Los Angeles!! I predict he will be in more commercials than soccer matches given his propensity to always having an injury.). Now this 7 on 7 football is apparently popular with high school football players so they can improve their passing games. Essentially you have 6 guys on the line with a quarterback so essentially it is a game of "everyone go deep on three..................." which is nothing more than the sand lot football my generation played as kids.

Having read this article football was in the back of my mind while I attended the Professional Educators of Iowa ( annual meeting in Des Moines. One educator I ended up talking with was Emory Stewart who is a football coach for the William Penn University Statesmen (WPU) in Iowa. ( Only half-joking I told Coach Stewart that I still, "have my four years of eligibility to play college football........" even though I am 41 years old!! WPU is a member of the NAIA (not the NCAA) so Coach Stewart educated me when he told me that the NAIA rules allows them to provide scholarships to every one of their football players versus a set number of scholarships per team as the NCAA requires.

With summer nearly half over already that means the 2007-2008 football season is fast approaching with WPU's first game set for August 25th against Waldorf College if I read their website correctly. This season's competition on the gridiron will make better players of WPU's entire football team but these same competitive pressures will not exist for the teachers in the public schools of the City of Oskaloosa, Iowa where WPU is based due to the lack of full-blown school choice.

Good luck Statesmen,


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