1 in 1.108286 million
tor's lads won their section championship friday night, so they're among the eight big-school teams playing in the state tournament that starts this weekend. he helped clear a nice path for the backs, got a few pats on the back, and enjoyed his final game at mustang stadium.
tor's athletic career got me thinking about how many other students are involved in football and other high school sports. according to the national federation of high school coaches, over a million u.s. high school students (1,108,286) played football last year (27,626 of them in minnesota) and record numbers are participating in sports more generally.
a new report shows the gender distribution of participants in different sports in 2007-2008. it provides raw numbers rather than rates (i.e., nothing is standardized by population differences), so i'd exercise caution in interpreting the trend data. nevertheless, here are a few highlights from the press release:
i plotted the current participation numbers by sport in the figure below. basketball, track, swimming, and soccer are popular among both girls and boys; football and baseball are almost exclusively male sports; and, volleyball, softball, spirit, and field hockey are predominantly female sports. there are some major differences in participation rates and in the gender gap in participation across the states.
- Texas has the most sports participants with 779,049, followed by California (735,497), New York (380,870), Ohio (346,571), Illinois (336,646), Michigan (315,734), Pennsylvania (286,992), New Jersey (256,837), Minnesota (230,068) and Florida (227,157).
in my house, tor participates in a lot more sports than esperanza, but she participates in far more arts, drama, and creative school activities than he does. so, while i'll miss the friday night lights at mustang stadium, i'm looking forward to four more years of great performances in the school auditorium.