Friday, October 21, 2016

5 Things on a Friday: Hooked on a Feeling, Vol. 2

I discovered last week that 5 Things is a lot less work than the NFL picks pool I was running previously and has at least twice as many readers.  I still feel like the series may ran its course during the primary season, but who knows?  Maybe with election itself coming to a close, we’re almost ready to move on.
Anyway, there’s plenty to talk about this week.

[F]ormer Attorney General Eric Holder will chair a new umbrella group focused on redistricting reform — with the aim of taking on the gerrymandering that’s left the party behind in statehouses and made winning a House majority far more difficult.
The new group, called the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, was developed in close consultation with the White House. President Barack Obama himself has now identified the group — which will coordinate campaign strategy, direct fundraising, organize ballot initiatives and put together legal challenges to state redistricting maps — as the main focus of his political activity once he leaves office.
Crimes against geography, via ConsultantsMind.Com
There are lots of things on which a retired president might focus his energies, but I tend to agree with Obama that a more rational redistricting scheme will create more responsive national politics.  That can only help.  This year’s political action has been so intensely horrible than even *I* have hated it, and I usually love politics.  
At this point, the entire country ought to be ready to try something that makes a little more sense.
In our age of what appears to be permanent austerity for public institutions, Division I sports, most particularly football, are also becoming a permanent drain on many schools, not only despite these rising revenues, but because of them...
Because there is so much money associated with the power conferences, the siren song of joining the big time is strong, but increasingly trying to compete at the highest levels of athletics is a losing proposition resulting in a very small group of haves (only 12 out of 231 programs had $0 in subsidies) and a very large group of have nots that not only hemorrhage money but rely on student funds to balance budgets.
Thirty percent of Division I programs are at least 75 percent subsidized and in many cases, much of this subsidy comes from student tuition. Dozens of schools could reduce tuition by 10 percent or more annually if they dropped these athletics subsidies mined from student money.
I love college sports, but I hate the money behind the big time programs.  As a matter of reality, competing in collegiate athletics taught me more about the Real World than did my college coursework.  Among other things, I learned the value of hard work in concrete terms.  But the system we have now prioritizes sports above education at the elite level, and save for a handful of NFL draft prospect, that’s not helping anyone.
More kids should play, but smaller stakes should be on the line.  Sport is beautiful, but it shouldn’t be a business at the amateur level.
3. Guardians of the Galaxy 2
4. (Old Man) Logan

X-23.  It's the foot-claw that makes it hot.

Monken said senior wide receiver Edgar Poe (hand), sophomore fullback Andy Davidson (shoulder) and sophomore fullback Darnell Woolfolk (ankle) are all on track to play Saturday.
“They (the trainers) feel like Woolfolk can play as long as he can tolerate it,” Monken said. “He’s probably healthier than Andy. But, they think Andy is going to play too.”
Eh.  I don’t love the idea of pushing these kids to play through pain, but I will be surprised nonetheless if we don’t see Davidson out there on Saturday.  I saw a report this week that claimed Edgar Poe was on pace to play as well, but that one I flat don’t believe.  I doubt that he comes back before Wake Forest or maybe even November 5th when Army takes on Air Force.
If you missed it, my preview of the North Texas game is right here.  Speaking personally, I think it's the best, most complete preview I've ever done.  That probably means you guys will hate it.

That's all, folks!

Go Army!  Beat North Texas!!!

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