Do the sportsters have a chance?
You bring up a great point I hadn’t thought about, with the intersection of sports and education!
I don’t have the data to support this, but I have a theory that somewhere along the line parents gave up and stopped trusting pure scholastics to get their kids to jobs. Follow me here. As this white working class demographic (fair to include other middle and lower class minorities) began noticing they were getting no financial return on their age and expertise, they began also doubting schooling (of which they probably attended and thought they were pretty smart too). There is obviously tons of data out there that says there are millions of brilliant kids underperforming because they don’t live near or can’t afford a school.
So when you have a few kids who are really smart — and you were really smart, but none of you could properly enter the workforce, what do you do? Lottery. We see this everywhere. Where ever despair manifests, human beings natural inclination is towards prayer and superstition. We have to believe in something, so we throw the dice where at least 1/1,000,000 times we win (more than public schooling gave us). I believe sports is this natural occurring phenomenon. When everything else failed, sports could still break through — and hell, how hard could it be to play football well?
I think public schools and colleges alike have done great injustices to student priorities, but I think the demographic data of despair in the study I cited would more likely suggest that a focus on pop culture, celebrities, sports, etc is the result of despair — not a change in focus.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts!