Discourse / Letters / October 9, 2019

Letter to the Editor: Knox should help Grinnell football

Grinnell College forfeiting their remaining football games for the 2019 season is not a surprise. In fact, I would not be surprised if other schools would just discontinue their football programs. For the last century there has been a gap in the emphasis of football programs by Midwest Conference members. Evidently the Conference has not addressed this gap – resulting in Grinnell’s rightful action for the benefit of their students.

In light of this, I encourage Knox College to set a standard for others to follow:

1. Do not accept Grinnell’s forfeiture. Instead, recognize it as a postponement to be played at a later date – even playing two games in the regular season.

2. No doubt some Grinnell players are very disappointed their season has been canceled, so extend an invitation to those youngsters to join the Knox College team for the remainder of the season. Time-wise, this will amount to only 6 weeks on the Knox campus, after which they would return to Grinnell. As for academics, no doubt these two outstanding institutions could work it out.

Whether or not this proposal comes to fruition, this gesture is made in the SPIRIT OF GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP – which, in this day and age, athletics at all levels could improve on.



James L. Bjorkman, ‘57

TKS Staff

Tags:  football Grinnell College knox college athletics midwest conference Prairie Fire Football

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Oct 10, 2019

Well, Someone doesn’t have any idea NCAA rules and regulations.

Oct 10, 2019

Well, Someone has no idea what NCAA rules and regulations are.

Oct 13, 2019

As a member of Knox College championship team of 1956, I read Jamie’ s letter with mixed emotions. Since 1956 and today the game has changed significantly. In 1956 the NCAA mandated two separate programs, one freshmen and one for the upperclassmen. My opinion a significant impact on the athletic budget not to mention the impact of morale on the freshmen.
The NCAA football substitution rules were restrictive. Players were forced to “play both offense and defense”. No mass of players from both teams on the field whenever possession of the ball changed. Coaches could not give players a “breather” or the opportunity to receive medical assistance. Don’t think the squad ever reached 30 players. By end of season the it was less than 22 players. No full team scrimmages instead it was the left side of the line against the right side.
Though I sympathize with the players not being able to complete in a sport they enjoy, it is discouraging to lose by large scores. For the best interests of the players I feel the college made the tough decision to cancel the balance of the season.

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