Where we’ve been, who we’ve seen

Keith McMillan talks at length about some of the trips he has taken since starting the Around the Nation column back in 2001. Some of those trips he and I have taken together, sometimes he’s been on his own, but the goal, at least unofficially, is to see every Division III team play someday, and see a game in every home stadium.

Now, to be honest, that isn’t very realistic. The fact remains that it’s very difficult to see more than one game in a weekend, which limits the number of teams either of us can see in a season. And I recently moved away from the east coast, where I had a much better chance of knocking teams off the list. But I’ll continue to give it a try.

I’m only counting the teams I’ve seen play (must have seen at least half of a game to qualify) and stadiums I’ve been in for a D-III game. I’ve also visited a bunch of campuses and walked through, or around a bunch of stadiums: Aurora, Beloit, Concordia (Ill.), Delaware Valley, Hamline, Huntingdon, Illinois Wesleyan, LaGrange, Lake Forest, Lebanon Valley, Lewis and Clark, Millsaps, Mississippi College, North Park, Northwestern, Oberlin, St. Thomas, Susquehanna, Trinity (Conn.), Wittenberg, Wooster, WPI. But I’ve seen 108 teams play, by my count, and seen games in 61 stadiums.

This doesn’t count Swarthmore, which I saw play back in the ’90s. Unfortunately, it seems that was a one-time occurrence.

Some of the places I’ve seen games have changed quite a bit. I mean, I was at St. John Fisher in 1994 but I know the stadium isn’t a bit like that was. I saw FDU-Madis… excuse me, FDU-Florham in a different era. Soon my view on RPI will be outdated. But they all count. And maybe I’ll get back there again.

Here’s who I’ve seen play, starting in 1991: Albright, Alfred, Augsburg, Augustana, Aurora, Benedictine, Bethel, Blackburn, Bridgewater (Va.), Brockport State, Cal Lutheran, Capital, Carleton, Carnegie Mellon, Catholic, Central, Chicago, Christopher Newport, Coast Guard, Coe, Cortland State, Crown, Curry, Delaware Valley, Dickinson, East Texas Baptist, Elmhurst, Emory & Henry, FDU-Florham, Franklin & Marshall, Frostburg State, Gallaudet, Gettysburg, Greensboro, Grove City, Guilford, Gustavus Adolphus, Hampden-Sydney, Hanover, Hardin-Simmons, Hobart, Howard Payne, Huntingdon, Ithaca, John Carroll, Johns Hopkins, Kean, King’s, Linfield, Louisiana College, Lycoming, Macalester, Maranatha Baptist, Mary Hardin-Baylor, McDaniel, McMurry, Merchant Marine, Methodist, Millsaps, Mississippi College, Minnesota-Morris, Montclair State, Mount Union, Muhlenberg, North Carolina Wesleyan, New Jersey, Newport News, Nichols, North Central, Northwestern (Minn.), Pacific Lutheran, Principia, Randolph-Macon, Rockford, Rowan, RPI, Salisbury, Shenandoah, Springfield, St. John Fisher, St. Olaf, St. John’s, St. Scholastica, St. Thomas, Susquehanna, Thiel, Thomas More, Trinity (Conn.), Trinity (Texas), Union, Ursinus, UW-Eau Claire, UW-La Crosse, UW-Stout, UW-Whitewater, Washington and Jefferson, Washington and Lee, Washington U., Waynesburg, Wesley, Western Connecticut, Wheaton, Widener, Wilkes, William Paterson, Williams, Wittenberg, Worcester State.

Key gets: I went out of my way to see Cal Lutheran when they came to Muhlenberg in 2002. Saw a bunch of teams last year at the UMAC’s Dome Day. Picked off both Macalester and St. Scholastica just this past weekend. Saw both Susquehanna and Grove City play at Dickinson, in 1999 and 2000, and never since. Traveled with Catholic when I was a student to a game at the University of Chicago.

And the schools at which I’ve seen games: Albright, Augsburg, Benedictine, Bridgewater (Va.), Capital, Carnegie Mellon, Catholic, Central, Chicago, Coast Guard, Cortland State, Dickinson, Elmhurst, FDU-Florham, Franklin & Marshall, Frostburg State, Gallaudet, Gettysburg, Hampden-Sydney, Hardin-Simmons, Johns Hopkins, Kean, King’s, Linfield, Lycoming, Macalester, Mary Hardin-Baylor, McDaniel, McMurry, Merchant Marine, Montclair State, Mount Union, Muhlenberg, New Jersey, North Central, Randolph-Macon, Rowan, RPI, Salisbury, Shenandoah, Springfield, St. John Fisher, St. Olaf, St. John’s, Thiel, Trinity (Texas), Union, Ursinus, UW-Eau Claire, UW-Stout, UW-Whitewater, Washington and Jefferson, Washington U., Wesley, Western Connecticut, Wheaton, Widener, Wilkes, William Paterson, Williams, Worcester State.

New this year: East Texas Baptist, Macalester, St. Scholastica, Wartburg,

There are certainly some holes in this list. Never seen Wabash (or DePauw, take it easy, people!). I’ve never been to a SCIAC school or seen anyone from the Midwest Conference. Didn’t take nearly enough advantage of my year in Connecticut. But I’ll get the list down, slowly but surely.

Not sure if Keith will chime in with his list, but anyone else is welcome, of course.

14 thoughts on “Where we’ve been, who we’ve seen

  1. Ooo, yeah, I’ll play, though I’m sure I’ll pale in comparison if my list is sandwiched between Pat’s and Keith’s 🙂

    My list looks a little more jumbled, but my tally is organized by conferences, and the conference list is alphabetical, so that’s the rhyme — if not the reason.

    Aside from the Indiana and Ohio schools, my list is primarily (about three-fourths) teams I’ve seen in the past three years. Those marked with an asterick (*) are teams I’ve seen play at home. In addition, I’ve of course also been to Salem Stadium to see the Stagg Bowl four times. Here’s the rest of my list, consisting of 40 teams and 19 stadiums:

    Wesley*, Salisbury, Mary Hardin-Baylor, Franklin & Marshall*, Dickinson, Hanover*, Franklin*, Anderson*, Rose-Hulman, Manchester*, Albion*, Kalamazoo*, Widener, Albright, Rowan, Wabash*, Wooster, Ohio Wesleyan, Earlham, Oberlin, Linfield, Mount Union, Ohio Northern, Bridgewater*, Hampden-Sydney*, Emory & Henry*, Washington & Lee, Guilford*, Washington & Jefferson, DePauw*, Centre, Washington U., Ferrum*, Christopher Newport*, Shenandoah*, N.C. Wesleyan*, Averett, Greensboro, Maryville*, UW-Whitewater

    And after this weekend, I’ll be adding Ursinus and Johns Hopkins to my list 🙂

  2. I am somewhat surprised you’ve not yet seen Wabash, DePauw, or the Monon Bell game. But I certainly understand, given your full-time job and the enormity of the d3 football world. So if you’re schedule permits you to attend the MB game in Crawfordsville on Nov 15, I will make it a point to be there and would enjoy meeting you. I’ll be coming from Texas.

  3. I would certainly love to and in the event that I am not on ESPN on Sunday some year then the Monon Bell game is tops on my list for my next available Week 11.

  4. Great idea to add this to the blog, Pat. We’ve published our lists somewhere before and lost track of them, but it’s a good time to update.

    I have to do Triple Take now so I won’t be able to cobble together my list right away, but a few distinctions I’d like to make:

    1) As of last season, Pat or I had seen teams from every conference in action except maybe the MIAA. And I visited four of their fields and with some of their staffs over the summer, at least in an effort to try to acknowledge them.

    2) I think I have been to every state where D3 football is played to see a game except Maine, Vermont and R.I. And I’ve been to all those states, just not for a game 🙂

    I think between those two things we have D3 covered as best two people can. There of course are others on the staff and not on the staff whose opinions we solicit, value and trust to help fill in the overall picture.

    A couple other observations:

    — I think Pat and I (probably killing time on a flight or ride) once determined it would take almost 20 years to see each stadium, or each team play … I’m not sure what it was, but someone much smarter than me can figure it out. Well, here … 239 teams. If you saw two play each week it would take 119.5 Saturdays to see the entire division. Assuming you could make the schedule to include 16 playoff weeks and never duplicate a team (though I think that’s impossible in the final four then Stagg Bowl, so let’s say 15 weeks a year) … 120 / 15 = 8

    So you could see each team play once in no fewer than eight seasons.

    You could see each Division III venue during a game then in no fewer than 16 seasons.

    Coincidentally, I’m in my eighth season as the national columnist (ATN). Each Saturday I spend at home I feel prolongs the quest to get everywhere once.

    I cheat of course by visiting stadiums when there are not games being played, watching teams on the road and at neutral sites, and making more than one stop some Saturdays.

    Now, when I do my list, I will have to split it into four lists:
    Teams I’ve seen play in person
    Stadiums I’ve been to for a game
    Stadiums I’ve seen when no game was being played
    Places I’ve played at/teams I’ve played against

    Oh, and I have been to Monon Bell. Only at DePauw though 🙁

    OK, back to Triple Take.

  5. Evidently, Ryan and I live in the same area of Virginia(I’m in northern Campbell County). Anyway, I’ve only been to Randolph-Macon, Hampden-Sydney, Washington & Lee, Averett, and the Stagg Bowl twice(Ihad tix for a 3rd one, but on game day that year, temps were in single digits, and there were 20+ MPH winds all day. I deecided to stay home in my heated apartment that day). My parents were Alfred alumni, and although I’ve never been to a game there, I have been to the campus(we were there for my Mom’s 30th reunion and a family wedding in Olean) and visited the football stadium.
    I’d love to do more traveling to small schools to see what I call “real” football, but my health ain’t what it used to be. I miss the atmosphere of D-III ball.

  6. Neil — agreed. Only problem is the job doesn’t really pay. So it’s nice work but we have to do other perhaps less-nice work to pay the mortgage. 🙂

    Saxons — hope the weather holds out for you this year.

  7. I wanna play!

    Teams I’ve seen (55): Albright, Amherst, Bates, Bowdoin, Bridgewater (Va.), Brockport State, Buffalo State, Capital, Colby, Cortland State, Curry, Delaware Valley, FDU-Florham, Gettysburg, Hamilton, Hampden-Sydney, Hartwick, Ithaca, John Carroll, Juniata, Kean, King’s, Lebanon Valley, Linfield, Lycoming, Mary Hardin-Baylor, Merchant Marine, Middlebury, Montclair St, Moravian, Mount Union, Muhlenberg, New Jersey, Nichols, Rowan, RPI, Salisbury, Shenandoah, Springfield, St. John Fisher, Susquehanna, Trinity (Conn.), Tufts, Ursinus, Utica, UW-Whitewater, Wesley, Wesleyan, Western Conn, Westfield State, Widener, Wilkes, William Paterson, Williams, Worcester State

    Basically most of the East region minus a handful from the Liberty League and NEFC. That’s why I always look forward to the playoffs and the opportunity to see teams west of the Susquehanna River (i.e. Central PA).

    Now, if we could just get some new teams in the later rounds of the playoffs. 😉

  8. Alright, knocking St. Thomas off my stadium list as we speak. Nice venue, though it could use visiting stands. Especially on a day like today. 🙂

  9. Yes but that would require eliminating a parking lot. For those of you that have never been to St. Thomas should know there’s a lot packed into this small campus – about the equivalent of 8 city blocks Main part of campus with softball and soccer on another part of campus. It would be difficult, and with how hard it is to park on game day I can’t see them eliminating that lot on the east side of the field just to add another 500-1500 seats… Not yet anyway.

  10. I should add, on the second link there the tennis courts have been destroyed to put in a parking ramp named after my day-job boss. In the interest of fair disclosure, of course.

    There was a plan to expand the facilities and upgrade them starting in January I believe, but Pat told me today that it appears to be delayed a year.

  11. So I’ve determined I’ve seen 100 D3 teams play live, including 1 I played for and 11 I played against (although just about all of them I saw as a media member or fan as well).

    And I’ve seen 61 venues, including 18 when there was no game being played.

    I will post the list after I finish this week’s ATN, and link to the similar discussion now going on on Post Patterns. There are also three or four conferences where I’m severely lacking.

    Just realized my numbers resemble Pat’s 108 and 61 (as of a few weeks ago).

    Together I bet we have a lot of overlap, but also some significant differences (i.e him in the NEFC and LL, me in the SCIAC)

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