Friday, September 29, 2006

Sports As Education

Many people, myself included, consider sports to offer invaluable lessons in discipline, commitment, delayed gratification, and teamwork. "A Healthy body breeds a healthy mind."

But apparently, whether the sport makes the individual or the already-defined individual picks the sport, the following table shows some interesting correlations.

Division I Graduation Rates for Entering Classes of 1996-99, by Sport

Men’s Sports

GSRp>

Federal Rate

Baseball

65%

46%

Basketball

59

45

Cross Country/Track

74

60

Fencing

87

68

Football

65

55

Golf

78

61

Gymnastics

86

73

Ice Hockey

84

73

Lacrosse

88

76

Rifle

74

62

Skiing

89

74

Soccer

78

58

Swimming

81

68

Tennis

82

63

Volleyball

76

63

Water Polo

85

71

Wrestling

69

53


(Note that GSR is an adjusted rate which corrects for transfers)

With a proper disclaimer to differentiating between correlation and causality:

JUST IN CASE THERE MIGHT BE A CAUSAL RELATIONSHIP: Unless you are completely convinced you are the next NFL superstar in the making, if you want to graduate from college you should probably steer clear of Baseball or Football. Invest that time in your studies instead!

1 comment:

Liberal Wife said...

You have, on occasion, expressed frustration when comparing the amount of money that goes into college sports versus the amount of money that goes into scientific studies.

Granted that this argument raises science in particular, rather than the general scholarship represented by atheletes graduating in any number of majors, but it would seem as if these results gesture towards a greater good being served by college sports, something worthy in its (possible) contribution to the intellectual capability (or level of informedness) of the culture / species.

Either that, or teachers or more likely to bend their standards when grading atheletes, so more atheletes (than non-atheletes) are passing without doing the work. In which case, all of that money spent on sports in college is actually dumbing down the populace as a whole.

Hmmmm ...