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General => General Division III issues => Topic started by: justafan12 on May 22, 2019, 03:45:12 pm

Title: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: justafan12 on May 22, 2019, 03:45:12 pm
https://www.d3sports.com/notables/2019/05/tommies-tossed-from-miac
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC conference
Post by: justafan12 on May 22, 2019, 03:54:06 pm
Appears this was already posted in the West region football forum.  There are lots more comments there.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC conference
Post by: Gray Fox on May 22, 2019, 05:05:31 pm
Appears this was already posted in the West region football forum.  There are lots more comments there.

  "Lots" is an understatement. :D
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC conference
Post by: old scot on May 22, 2019, 06:02:29 pm
Wow. Don't think I have ever heard of a school getting banished from a conference for their sports teams winning too much. Sooo sad. What has become of this country. Everyone has to be treated with kid gloves care and not hurt the feelings of the other schools. Maybe St. T should buy the rest of the conference schools participation trophies. Makes me sick
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Pat Coleman on May 22, 2019, 06:08:30 pm
I'm OK with having a big-picture discussion here about whether this might lead to more expulsions, etc.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Gregory Sager on May 22, 2019, 06:24:03 pm
I honestly don't see this as a catalyst for other leagues taking similar measures to their own perennial winners (e.g., the ARC kicking out Wartburg, the Centennial giving the heave-ho to Johns Hopkins, or the ODAC bouncing Washington & Lee). The circumstances regarding St. Thomas seem to be pretty MIAC-specific.

Then again, maybe I'm just being naive. Or maybe the prevalence of schools that are bad fits for their leagues is broader than I imagined.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Mr. Ypsi on May 22, 2019, 10:59:12 pm
I honestly don't see this as a catalyst for other leagues taking similar measures to their own perennial winners (e.g., the ARC kicking out Wartburg, the Centennial giving the heave-ho to Johns Hopkins, or the ODAC bouncing Washington & Lee). The circumstances regarding St. Thomas seem to be pretty MIAC-specific.

Then again, maybe I'm just being naive. Or maybe the prevalence of schools that are bad fits for their leagues is broader than I imagined.

Yeah, I don't know the ins-and-outs of most conferences, but no one but the MIAC seems to have bottom-feeders who have billion-dollar endowments and simply CHOOSE not be competitive athletically.  Bottom-feeders in other conferences at least try, although circumstances may make competitiveness almost impossible.  I doubt K'zoo will ever challenge for a MIAA football title, but their tennis teams are essentially unbeatable.  Your North Park has fizzled in it's rise in football after Coach Conway ran out of sons (;D), but you've still got 83% of the conference's national basketball titles to fall back on (and a heckuva soccer team, in case the bball titles are starting to grow mold).  Wilmington gets kicked around as much as St. Olaf, and not JUST by UMU, but I don't hear them whining.

St. Olaf, Carleton, and Macalester strike me as overly-entitled children who just can't muster the guts to compete, so just take their billion dollar balls and go home.  I don't know the inner details, but it would seem that if they were the only ones threatening to bolt, the MIAC would have been better off saying "don't let the door hit your ass on the way out" and replace them with a couple of UMAC teams.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Captain_Joe08 on May 23, 2019, 12:37:59 am
I honestly don't see this as a catalyst for other leagues taking similar measures to their own perennial winners (e.g., the ARC kicking out Wartburg, the Centennial giving the heave-ho to Johns Hopkins, or the ODAC bouncing Washington & Lee). The circumstances regarding St. Thomas seem to be pretty MIAC-specific.

Then again, maybe I'm just being naive. Or maybe the prevalence of schools that are bad fits for their leagues is broader than I imagined.

Who knows at this point. The Pandora's Box has been opened today. Who also reaches inside to do the same remains to be seen.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Ron Boerger on May 23, 2019, 09:30:41 am
A conference has the right to decide the terms of membership in said conference.  This is D3, and so those factors include a wide number of things such as admissions standards, role of athletics in the greater scholastic environment, spending on athletics and facilities, enrollment, public vs private, and so forth.  The unfortunate thing in this situation is that the MIAC is saying it's solely because St. Thomas is kicking their collective butt and totally ignoring (at least in public) the other factors above that contribute to said butt-kicking.   Maybe that was the pound of flesh St. Thomas was able to extract in exchange for "involuntary withdrawal". 

I'm sensitive to this because the SCAC went through something similar when the SAA split off.  The publicly stated reason was that it was all about travel and the resultant demands on students, but there was an undercurrent that it also was because the remaining SCAC schools weren't up to SAA academic standards (reinforced by the president of one school; true in some but not all cases).  Again, schools/conferences have the right to do what's right for their membership/student-athletes, but you need to be clear about what those factors are.  If the sole reason for the MIAC to kick out a charter member is that they can't compete, woe to the conference for the precedent just set. 
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Ralph Turner on May 23, 2019, 10:38:33 am
With respect to the SAA, I am not privy to the personalities involved, but Oglethorpe is/was not a member of the Associated of Colleges of the South. If the idea was for Sewanee, Rhodes, Millsaps, Birmingham-Southern, Hendrix, and Centre to enforce "standards", why was Oglethorpe invited to the SAA?   Just asking...
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Pat Coleman on May 23, 2019, 10:39:12 am
With respect to the SAA, I am not privy to the personalities involved, but Oglethorpe is/was not a member of the Associated of Colleges of the South. If the idea was for Sewanee, Rhodes, Millsaps, Birmingham-Southern, Hendrix, and Centre to enforce "standards", why was Oglethorpe invited to the SAA?   Just asking...

Probably because there is also a standard for an automatic bid. :)
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Ralph Turner on May 23, 2019, 10:41:32 am
With respect to the SAA, I am not privy to the personalities involved, but Oglethorpe is/was not a member of the Associated of Colleges of the South. If the idea was for Sewanee, Rhodes, Millsaps, Birmingham-Southern, Hendrix, and Centre to enforce "standards", why was Oglethorpe invited to the SAA?   Just asking...

Probably because there is also a standard for an automatic bid. :)
Ohh... okay...

 ;)
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: AO on May 23, 2019, 11:08:31 am
I honestly don't see this as a catalyst for other leagues taking similar measures to their own perennial winners (e.g., the ARC kicking out Wartburg, the Centennial giving the heave-ho to Johns Hopkins, or the ODAC bouncing Washington & Lee). The circumstances regarding St. Thomas seem to be pretty MIAC-specific.

Then again, maybe I'm just being naive. Or maybe the prevalence of schools that are bad fits for their leagues is broader than I imagined.

Yeah, I don't know the ins-and-outs of most conferences, but no one but the MIAC seems to have bottom-feeders who have billion-dollar endowments and simply CHOOSE not be competitive athletically.  Bottom-feeders in other conferences at least try, although circumstances may make competitiveness almost impossible.  I doubt K'zoo will ever challenge for a MIAA football title, but their tennis teams are essentially unbeatable.  Your North Park has fizzled in it's rise in football after Coach Conway ran out of sons (;D), but you've still got 83% of the conference's national basketball titles to fall back on (and a heckuva soccer team, in case the bball titles are starting to grow mold).  Wilmington gets kicked around as much as St. Olaf, and not JUST by UMU, but I don't hear them whining.

St. Olaf, Carleton, and Macalester strike me as overly-entitled children who just can't muster the guts to compete, so just take their billion dollar balls and go home.  I don't know the inner details, but it would seem that if they were the only ones threatening to bolt, the MIAC would have been better off saying "don't let the door hit your ass on the way out" and replace them with a couple of UMAC teams.
Macalester, St. Olaf and Carleton actually do spend a lot of money on athletics and do quite well in many sports besides football.  Augsburg, Hamline and St. Mary's are typically in a lower tier than St. Olaf or Carleton.  Macalester spends more than Gustavus, Concordia or Bethel but doesn't have similar success.  At a certain point schools just need to understand that there is more to athletics than winning.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Pat Coleman on May 23, 2019, 11:15:11 am
More to winning ... and also more than just spending money.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Oline89 on May 23, 2019, 12:04:59 pm
Kicking a team out of a league because they win too much is not in the spirit of competitive sports.  That being said, getting kicked in the teeth for decades is not much fun for the student athletes, parents, fans, alumni etc.  A few years ago, teams departed the LL for similar reasons and joined a "lower ranked" conference.  This led to a tougher, although smaller LL, while at the same time opening up the playoff opportunity to the departed teams.  Unfortunately, this was probably not an option for the MIAC, due to geography.  Tough situation, certainly no easy answer.
Title: Re: St. Thomas removed from the MIAC
Post by: Dave 'd-mac' McHugh on May 23, 2019, 02:23:26 pm
Kicking a team out of a league because they win too much is not in the spirit of competitive sports.  That being said, getting kicked in the teeth for decades is not much fun for the student athletes, parents, fans, alumni etc.  A few years ago, teams departed the LL for similar reasons and joined a "lower ranked" conference.  This led to a tougher, although smaller LL, while at the same time opening up the playoff opportunity to the departed teams.  Unfortunately, this was probably not an option for the MIAC, due to geography.  Tough situation, certainly no easy answer.

Some student athletes, from these institutions, are saying on Twitter that it wasn't that brutal. Those games still made them better.

I experienced an 0-16 season in college soccer. It was tough. We were a better team than that, but we didn't have one particular piece come back ... our assistant coach became associate head coach (transitioning to head coach) and he turned into a maniac ... and things didn't bounce our way. We got our teeth kicked in my a conference opponent 10-0 and we also lost 12 of our games by a goal or two. It was a tough, tough season ... but it made me a better person and a more driven athlete.

Too many times people look at scores and automatically assume the athletes on the other side have been belittled. I even think that in some circumstances. However, we have to remember sometimes those instances end up being the best life lessons one can experience.

Per geography - I believe there are options for the lower tier in the MIAC, but they want their cake and eat it, too. They could have left for the UMAC or the MWC (many in the MWC are part of the same educational group as well). They chose this path instead. They want the "prestige of the MIAC" while getting a slightly better shot at the AQ (only slightly better unless they want to increase their effort to help their programs succeed). Unfortunately, the AQ won't come any easier and the prestige is being tarnished with their move. They literally are trying to have cake and eat it ... and reality it's being thrown in their face.

There are better options than to look like fools.