In Minneapolis, a lack of college football recruits

  • Article by: DENNIS BRACKIN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 25, 2012 - 8:36 AM

As players leave for private or suburban schools, the Minneapolis City Conference struggles to produce major-college recruits.

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pustule2Jan. 24, 12 9:55 PM

Maybe Minneapolis schools should focus on education and helping students see how they can contribute to society instead of wasting tax money and other resources on playing games.

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coachjeffJan. 25, 12 9:48 AM

@pustule2, I have to respectfully disagree. Football is a game that teaches important life lessons- discipline, teamwork, physical fitness to name a few- we want to get kids off the streets and off the x-box. I am the co-creator of the youth football website, www.youthfootballonline.com, I invite you to click on the All Stars tab and learn about how youth football builds young men.

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Loon03Jan. 25, 1212:01 PM

Excellent article Dennis. College football has nothing to do with the number of high school students or the number of students at the U. It has everything to do with the number of students who have both the genetic qualities of football players, the training/competition required and the ability of those athletes to maintain the human and academic standards required. Our horrible 50% drop out rate amongst black students in the Twin Cities is a clear message of why we have such a hard time getting the types of people we need.

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bhbhbhbhbhJan. 25, 1212:35 PM

Anybody who has decided to stay in the City and coach City kids has seen many great athletes who have just 'disappeared', due in part to the fact that in Mpls busing is the norm. This means few kids in the same neighborhood go to the same school, unlike in the ‘burbs’. City school teachers take little interest in organizing kids because the school is not the focus of the neighborhood kids. It is a big vicious circle. So busing ended up harming in many cases the same people it was designed to help.

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pacificoceanJan. 25, 12 1:24 PM

I don't blame the teachers or coaches. It's the great facilities and extra support staff at the suburban schools. From the all-weather fields, weight rooms with the best and newest equipment, athletic trainers, etc. It should be no surprise that parents send their children to the suburban schools.

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th3171Jan. 25, 12 3:59 PM

pustule2---not that you would understand, but the article is talking about major college recruits i.e. being skilled enough to garner a free college education.

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tnesleyJan. 25, 12 7:05 PM

Kudos for Coach Mason and Kill for taking the time to work with the kids. They may not make Div 1 football, but showing the drive to be successful in life. And you never know what seeds you plant might grow into.

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erickm1Jan. 25, 12 9:25 PM

It's not regular school busing - with the caveat that city schools have less after practice "activity" bus routes, making the trip home even longer. It's not magnet vs. neighborhood schools. Not very many elementary kids are attending a school on the other side of town. Most go to the nearest junior high. And as the article states, HS open enrollment started in 1989, which rendered HS magnets irrelevant. It's socio-economic status (poverty), stupid. (Speaking of stupid, it isn't surprising Glen Mason can't figure it out) What city sports programs compete with suburban and private schools? Basketball is the closest competitor, a few soccer teams have had great seasons lately. The common denominator is that it's cheap to play basketball and soccer growing up. The nearest park (which is very near in Mpls) has facilities for both, all you need is a ball and some friends. When is the last time a city track team could compete with richer schools? And it's not just the equipment. Participation fees are difficult for some families to afford. Transportation for youth sports events is a huge burden if you don't have a car or the schedule to cart the kids around. And the a much higher percentage of city high school kids have their own after school jobs. Marcus Williams says all you need to know: "having enough books for the whole class, extra help if you need it". Why don't city schools have these things?

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melbgopherJan. 26, 12 5:07 PM

To erickm1: They don't have those things because no one wants to pay for them. And the reasons behind that should be apparent to anyone who wants to look.

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beaglemomJan. 27, 12 8:14 AM

I think the bigger tragedy is that the same thing happened in Hockey...from a city that produced Olympic athletes and pros in higher percentages than other areas...Boys gymnastics has been gone over 30 years and a recent Strib article discussed the impact of that on a lack of male spotters. Some of this also results from raising kids with the whole "participation ribbon" mentality, they have lost the urge to strive and sacrifice. This will result in the lack of those traits throughout life. Sad.

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