Comparing & Contrasting College Admissions and the NFL Draft

Every April, executives and coaches from the 32 NFL Teams prepare to select the college football players that they will add to their roster. For months leading up to this event, their scouts pour over every morsel of information that they can find on the hundreds of players available for the picking.  And talking heads at ESPN and other sports media outlets talk about all of it.  Anyhow…. how does this relate to school?

Each year, players taken with one of the first few picks become “busts,” just as players taken late in the draft become stars.  Why do some teams always get it so wrong?  (I’m looking at you, Cleveland.)

It’s about what they look at to aide in making these decisions.  A few months prior to the draft, the players participate in Combines and Pro Days.  On these days, they show off their measurable athletic qualities: how fast they are, how high they jump, how much they can bench press.  Well, this guy ran 40 yards in 4.38 seconds, jumped 37 inches, bench pressed 205 pounds and has 3.2% body fat.  He must be good.  Unfortunately, Browns fans, it ain’t that easy.  Athleticism is certainly part of the recipe, but that alone doesn’t cut it.  There’s so much more that goes into it.

With the Number 1 pick in the 2017 Draft, the Cleveland Browns select . . . the point of this blog post!  Most colleges do the same thing – they send out acceptance letters based on GPAs, ACTs and SATs.  But, there are always 3.0-21-1010 kiddos with amazing critical thinking, creativity and drive.  There are also 4.5-32-1500 kids with no perseverance and no intrinsic motivation.  Which one will be successful in college?  Which one would you hire?

When more colleges evaluate prospective students based on the skills they’ll really need in their futures rather than data that only tells half of the story, our education system will finally win the Super Bowl.  What about the Browns, though?  Don’t hold your breath.

I'm a lifelong Browns fan.  The torture from the last 15 years gives me the right to poke fun at our disastrous franchise.  :)

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Jake Miller

Jake is the host of the Educational Duct Tape podcast, the #EduGIF Guy, a Tech Integration Coach, speaker, Former STEM, Math & Science Teacher, and a presenter.