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Thread: O.T. - "Why Catholic Colleges Excel at Basketball"

  1. #1
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    Default O.T. - "Why Catholic Colleges Excel at Basketball"

    This piece in the New York Times is terrific.
    Several characteristics of Catholicism in America, both sociological and spiritual, have helped determine this affinity; the Catholic Church’s decision not to abandon the urban poor in America in the second half of the 20th century, when so many other institutions did, was particularly significant.

    Much of Catholic education’s historic commitment to basketball derives from demographics.

    Several decades ago, many American Catholics were working-class urbanites, clustered in some of the same cities — New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, San Francisco, New Orleans — in which these schools rose up.

    “Many of our schools were founded to serve immigrants and the working class — Catholics unable to get into other schools,” Martin said.
    There is nothing in Catholic dogma that specifically elucidates the virtues of basketball. Yet several scholars pointed to elements of American Catholicism that helped persuade schools to embrace sports.

    Jesuit philosophy — embedded at so many top basketball schools, such as Gonzaga, Xavier, Creighton and Georgetown — extends to all aspects of life. It preaches cura personalis, or “care for the person” — in not only the intellectual and spiritual sense, but the physical one, too.

    Catholicism in America taught that all aspects of life could be sacred, Byrne said, maybe even basketball.

    “It’s not that sports were particularly holy, but you could see it as a holy thing to do. It could have the potential to give glory to God,” said Byrne, referencing the Jesuit phrase “ad majorem Dei gloriam,” or “for the greater glory of God.”

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZagNative View Post
    ...and then there were the Nuns, making sure that each of us truly applied ourselves! LOL
    Hoping you have a sense of humor too!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZagNative View Post
    Saw and read this but failed to post. Thanks for posting. What it is really all about!

  4. #4
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    "Several characteristics of Catholicism in America, both sociological and spiritual, have helped determine this affinity; the Catholic Church’s decision not to abandon the urban poor in America in the second half of the 20th century, when so many other institutions did, was particularly significant"

    I remember hearing while I was at GU that every Jesuit college in America was initially placed in a relatively poor part of town. I don't know if it's completely true, but I like the idea.

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