Power Play: The Higher Learning of the National Hockey League

By Martin, James; Samels, James E. | University Business, December 2008 | Go to article overview

Power Play: The Higher Learning of the National Hockey League


Martin, James, Samels, James E., University Business


AS AMERICAN AS MOM, APple pie, and baseball? As futurists, we think this heretofore timeless axiom could use an extreme makeover to better reflect the popular professional sports of our contemporary culture.

These days the conventional "big three" professional sports (baseball, basketball, and football) look on from the sidelines as America's new power sports--NASCAR, extreme sports, and hockey--ignite the next generation of athletes.

What do NASCAR drivers, extreme sports athletes, and professional hockey players have in common? They are smarter, faster, and more nimble than their traditional predecessors. This first month of winter we take a closer look at collegiate and pro hockey trend lines. Gone are the days of assuming that those who play hockey are all brawn and no brains.

The National Hockey League (NHL) is, ironically, the second oldest of the four major pro team sports leagues in North America, yet only recently has hockey become a game of finesse, nuance, and strategy--all intricately executed on ice for a blend of excitement, speed, and action. According to a recent Simmons Market Research Bureau consumer study, NHL fans are younger, more educated, more affluent, and more digitally connected than any other fan base. No wonder hockey's popularity on and off campus has grown exponentially over the last decade.

Last year, approximately 1,500 student athletes participated in NCAA hockey, which reports a hockey graduation success rate of 83 percent, in comparison to baseball's 68 percent, football's 67 percent, and basketball's 62 percent. Who says that hockey players don't have intellectual prowess?

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

In years gone by, the typical NHL player would be selected from Canadian Junior A Leagues, composed of teams that recruited players from middle and high schools. Fast-forward to the 2009-2010 year: insiders predict an ever-increasing cohort of NHL players will be drafted from U.S. colleges and universities.

According in Professor John Wong of Washington State University, American collegiate hockey has elevated its ability to produce players capable of stepping into the NHL, as the number of players in the past decade being picked in the first round of the draft demonstrates. At the same time, it seems the NHL is leaving individual teams to explore their own new markets and, with increasing frequency, those markets include American colleges and universities. "Each year, the National Hockey League works with its member clubs to grow the great sport of hockey on and off the ice," said Keith Martin Jr., NHL vice president of community and diversity programming, when he announced that Spelman College in Atlanta had won the NHL and Atlanta Thrashers' marketing challenge.

HIGHER ED IMPACT

Clearly, collegiate hockey is no longer an interest of a handful of remote, snowbound institutions. Big-name schools known for traditional sports dynasties are getting into the mix--including Boston University, Boston College, Notre Dame, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Whether players use their degrees in post-NHL careers or in careers immediately following college, the role of higher education now has a significant impact on a player's future and a pro team's popularity on campus.

According to Charlie Titus, vice chancellor for athletics and recreation, special programs and projects, at the University of Massachusetts, Boston (UMB), "Our hockey players have to make smart choices both on and off the ice. It is imperative that they excel in the classroom so that they can succeed with discipline on the ice. UMass Boston hockey players rank in the top 30 percent in terms of academic performance of our entire student athlete population. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • A full archive of books and articles related to this one
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Power Play: The Higher Learning of the National Hockey League
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.