US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

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US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by amg on Wed Aug 04, 2010 5:45 pm

Apologies if this has already been posted, of if this is in the wrong place--but I found this ranking so absurd I had to vent, and couldn't think of anywhere better than Pilot Nation: US News & World Report did a ranking of the "9 Top Colleges for Soccer Fans" and included Seattle U, Notre Dame, Stanford, and UCLA but no UP! Seriously? Seattle U? The other obvious omission is UCSB (which has led the nation in men's attendance for several years) so it is not just some kind of Sounders anti-PDX conspiracy. But still.

Here's a URL for the rankings:
http://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/slideshows/9-of-the-best-colleges-for-soccer-fans/

And for the blog where I first saw the story:
http://www.nutmegradio.com/ranking-the-top-colleges-for-soccer-fans/

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by SoreKnees on Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:09 pm

Don't get me started on US News....

They are probably looking at the presence of an MLS team and perhaps WPS as well.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by DaTruRochin on Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:29 pm

Yeah, they mentioned that as a criteria for Seattle U, Notre Dame and UCLA if you look at the slide show... and then talk about team success, both of which are nice, but I don't see how they are distinguishing characteristics for the "best fans"...

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by PurplePrideTrumpet on Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:40 pm

Seattle U "sits in what is rapidly becoming America's soccer capital."

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Guess the writer had to get Seattle in there somehow (fair enough; we'll see what happens when Portland joins MLS) and didn't realize UW is in Seattle, and has teams that have been solid for a while now.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by PurplePrideTrumpet on Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:44 pm

DaTruRochin wrote:Yeah, they mentioned that as a criteria for Seattle U, Notre Dame and UCLA if you look at the slide show... and then talk about team success, both of which are nice, but I don't see how they are distinguishing characteristics for the "best fans"...
The entry for Stanford didn't even mention the Quakes. In his defense, it's easy to forget about the Quakes Razz . Then again, Santa Clara has a women's College Cup and shares a stadium with the Quakes, so how much closer can you get?

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by Stonehouse on Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:59 pm

PurplePrideTrumpet wrote:Seattle U "sits in what is rapidly becoming America's soccer capital."

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Guess the writer had to get Seattle in there somehow (fair enough; we'll see what happens when Portland joins MLS) and didn't realize UW is in Seattle, and has teams that have been solid for a while now.

I know, right? I was wondering that too... why Seattle U when UW is right there?

And the Messiah College add-in is just bizarre. I mean, it's cool to support smaller schools and on a quick glance their men's team averages over 1000 in attendance, but really... the gap between DIII soccer and DI soccer is just too wide.

It's very possible the author of this post will get a stern letter from someone from inside Waldschmidt Hall. Wink

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by Stonehouse on Wed Aug 04, 2010 8:04 pm

OK... um... I missed this on the first read:

University of Notre Dame

The Fighting Irish are better known for their exploits on the gridiron, but their prowess on the soccer field deserves equal acclaim as they consistently field strong menís and womenís teams. Additionally, the MLSís Columbus Crew plays home games 15 minutes from campus.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure Columbus, Ohio is not 15 minutes from South Bend, Indiana.

I'm sure this is true for Ohio State, but definitely not Notre Dame.

Sheesh... nice research.

Edited to add:

And the hits keep rolling:

The Old Well, pictured here, sits at the heart of UNCís campus, which is home to a womenís soccer team that has laid claim to four national titles since 2003.

Four since 2003? Nice arbitrary line. Because 25 in 30 or whatever the heck it is isn't impressive or anything.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by PurplePrideTrumpet on Wed Aug 04, 2010 8:42 pm

Stonehouse wrote:

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure Columbus, Ohio is not 15 minutes from South Bend, Indiana.
They're 285 miles apart. He's only about 4 hours and 35 minutes off.

Mind you, all I did was spend 2 minutes on Google Maps. I don't do research for a major magazine or anything.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by PurplePrideTrumpet on Wed Aug 04, 2010 8:50 pm

Stonehouse wrote:
I'm sure this is true for Ohio State, but definitely not Notre Dame.
It's 2.4 miles/10 minutes from Ohio Stadium to Crew Stadium.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by Geezaldinho on Wed Aug 04, 2010 9:27 pm

this is silly. the stats for the best college soccer programs are posted in the NCAA record book.

Division I
Averarage Home Attendadance

Team T Total G Games Avg.
1. Portland................................................................................ 45,132 13 3,472
2. T Texas A&M............................................................................ 35,317 11 3,211
3. N North Carolina.................................................................... 27,435 13 2,110
4. BYU.......................................................................................... 21,279 11 1,934
5. S Stanford................................................................................ 19,176 12 1,598
6. Georgia.................................................................................. 18,114 12 1,510
7. N New Mexico......................................................................... 13,572 9 1,508
8. S South Carolina................................................................... 17,876 12 1,490
9. Florida.................................................................................... 17,867 12 1,489
10. T TCU.......................................................................................... 11,450 8

UP also leads in average and total attendance for any program, men or women. TAMU did a great job.

I notice UCLA, Seattle, and Notre Dame and Texas are nowhere to be found. Stanford is number 5, but they had an especially good year. I wonder where they will eventually settle? UNC was about 400 above its average for the last 10 years - reward for winning it all, and attendance was free.

Georgia is number 6, which surprised me.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by onetouchfutbol on Wed Aug 04, 2010 10:03 pm

Do things this ludicrous even deserve the response that it takes to write a letter...or even a blog post? It's a waste of energy...too many calories burned typing to warrant t--h--e e--f--f--o--r---t...

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by Geezaldinho on Wed Aug 04, 2010 10:45 pm

onetouchfutbol wrote:Do things this ludicrous even deserve the response that it takes to write a letter...or even a blog post? It's a waste of energy...too many calories burned typing to warrant t--h--e e--f--f--o--r---t...

Makes you wonder about the accuracy of their college ratings, Doesn't it? Maybe Harvard is really last.

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Re: US News ranking of best colleges for soccer fans

Post by SoreKnees on Thu Aug 05, 2010 7:41 am

Getting off topic, but having studied the USNWR college rankings at some length I can't resist a comment. Their college rankings are at least as arbitrary as the soccer ones and based on iffy criteria that change from year to year.

The data are largely self-reported via a lengthy questionnaire that colleges are asked to fill out. There is a long literature describing how colleges cook their data in order to move up in the rankings. For example, some schools have been known to encourage non-admissible students to apply in order to decrease their admit rate (one of the criteria). Others have encouraged alumni to make tiny donations (that cost more to process than they are worth) in order to move up in the "percent of alumni contributing" category.

Reed College stopped returning the survey about 15 years ago, so USNWR filled in arbitrary numbers (zero if nothing was easily available) and dropped them from the top 20 LA colleges into the bottom half of the overall pool.

There is a story---I don't know to what extent it is true---that they revamped the criteria one year after Cal Tech somehow came out as #1. Sure enough, the next year Harvard, Princeton, and Yale were back on top.

But I rant... Suffice it to say that this is not the first "ludicrous" college ranking attributable to this publication!

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