The secular decline of football in high school

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econalum
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The secular decline of football in high school

Post by econalum » Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:14 pm

Worrying statistics on h.s. football participation. While still the most popular sport, many stats are negative.

To be clear - I am an avid football fan across college and pros. Just not FBS for alma mater.

Nationally an 11.7% decline over the past 10 years. 13-14% in CT and MA. Even down; 10% in TX, 5% in FL, 27% in Ohio.

Only PA showed a small increase across the 50 states.

This article is worthy of consideration.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/201 ... erica.html
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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by jjmc85 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 12:59 am

Good. There should be a decline. It’s a very violent game and there are long term repercussions from playing, even at the high school level. If I had kids there’s no way in hell I’d let them play even a down of tackle football. I don’t really understand why a 14 year old’s parents lets them play with what we know about concussions nowadays to be honest.

And yes, as someone who has had season tickets to UMass football since i graduated and used to go to games as a student, I realize how hypocritical I am.
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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by 78 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 7:24 am

How about parents of 8- and 9- year olds? It boggles my mind.
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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by dennisdent » Sun Nov 10, 2019 8:12 am

This should be in the General Discussion. UMass football is not mentioned at all in the article and plays college football.

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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by jjmc85 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 11:03 am

Disagree. It has to do with recruiting.

As to 78’s comments, It should be illegal to play tackle football for 8 and 9 year olds. Let them play flag if they’d like but that’s terrible to have them tackle and get brain trauma so young.
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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by Berkman » Sun Nov 10, 2019 11:25 am

When the article came out about the concussion problems several years ago Tom Brady's father said that if he knew about the concussions when Tom started playing FB he would never allowed him to play.

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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by McKinney » Sun Nov 10, 2019 12:13 pm

It's a trend everyone should be aware of no doubt. However, we're still talking about 250,000 high school seniors vying for maybe 2,800 FBS scholarships.

There's an argument to be made that with a smaller pool of high school players, there is a smaller number of exceptional guys (5 stars, top 50, 100, etc.) in those 2,800 slots. If those 2,800 slots now cover a lower interval on the talent distribution, then the range between those slots is a bit closer, ie. slight lower overall level of talent, but slightly greater parity. My hypothesis is this decline in truly exceptional players will have a deeper impact on the very top echelon of college football and an even deeper impact on the NFL.

One caveat is 2,800 for 250,000 is a national view, but of course, regions are at least a factor in recruiting. There may be some regions of the country where the number of players competing for a slot is more competitive or less competitive.
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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by Bubba » Tue Nov 12, 2019 10:40 am

I am ambivalent.

I started football at 8. I earned scholarship offers to college 1A-III, I never played. I have many of the 'signs' of CTE. I have suffered 3 concussions. Of my concussions, one was on the football field, two were being an idiot, football was the most minor one of them.

Given the option, on one hand football afforded me so many opportunities, it's hard to say given all the information I would not choose it again. A large part of who I am was guided by my identity as a football player and coach. I have seen it have such a positive influence on so many young people I struggle to say it's a net bad thing.

CTE, and other concerns are scary, very scary. The things I see in my life, and some others who I participated with match up TOO well with CTE symptoms. That said, I can not say that my 'CTE' comes from football, It could easily be from trying to do a backflip (miserable fail) on a cement floor in study hall, or scuffing my feet on ice in gradeschool (unintentional backflip).

My highschool football program, which had a long history, and was only a few years removed from a MA superbowl championship is now no longer around due to lack of participation.

Finally, as a former coach, I spent a LARGE amount of time trying to instruct my players to do things the correct way rather than the ESPN sports center Top 10 way. I came to greatly dislike the NFL. Fighting with players to not unbuckle their helmets after every play (because NFL players do). To keep their mouthpieces in (note, these are as much about concussion protection as teeth), To hit properly, not highlight reel like. I guess, my point, the NFL is to some extent it's own enemy. The kids are watching and learning bad lessons.

All of this to say, as above, I am ambivalent to say Football is good or bad.

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Re: The secular decline of football in high school

Post by econalum » Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:26 am

I am sorry that you are worried about CTE, best to you and fam.
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