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From the Bleachers: After a year without March Madness, the 2021 tournament did not disappoint

(04/06/21 6:00am)

The sports world looks very different since I wrote my last column in mid-November. As vaccination rollout continues across the country, fans begin to file back into seats, and the world inches toward normalcy, we’ve been able to enjoy a spectacular few weeks in the sports world. Last year, COVID-19 hit just as March Madness was about to begin, forcing the cancellation of the 2020 tournament and depriving us of buzzer-beaters and Cinderella stories. Fortunately, the 2021 tournament has provided two years worth of excitement.  


Drew O’Connor ’22 makes NHL debut with Pittsburgh Penguins

(04/02/21 6:00am)

Just two weeks after his promotion to the Pittsburgh Penguins taxi squad in January, Drew O’Connor ’22 made his National Hockey League debut against the Boston Bruins. Though the Penguins fell in a 3-2 loss, O’Connor contributed an assist on the first goal of the game, marking his first career point in his first career appearance. 


Lightweight rower Cooper Tuckerman ’22 competes in U.S. Olympic Trials

(03/30/21 6:00am)

Last month, lightweight rower Cooper Tuckerman ’22 competed in the U.S.Olympic Team trials in Sarasota, Florida. Despite not making the team for the upcoming Olympics in Tokyo, Tuckerman enjoyed being able to race again after almost a year — a tumultuous one that saw the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the termination of the Dartmouth men’s lightweight rowing team and the subsequent reinstatement of that team. 


Students testify against anti-transgender athlete bill at NH House hearing

(03/18/21 6:00am)

On March 9, two Dartmouth students testified verbally over Zoom before the New Hampshire House Education Committee against House Bill 198 — legislation that would ban transgender women from competing in women’s sports in public schools. The committee voted to retain the bill on Tuesday, delaying it for a year to clarify the wording of the bill and examine additional research. 


One year in, athletes and coaches reflect on initial sports cancellations

(03/09/21 7:10am)

Nearly one year ago, on March 10, 2020, the Ivy League Council of Presidents called off the Ivy League men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, marking the first Division I postseason tournament cancellation as national COVID-19 cases surged past 1,000. The following day, the Ivy League became the first conference to cancel all athletic activities through the remainder of the academic year, preceding the NBA’s suspension of its season that night and a flood of professional and collegiate cancellations on March 12. 



Coaches confront strict Ivy League, NCAA COVID-19 protocols as recruitment proceeds virtually

(03/09/21 7:00am)

As Dartmouth and the Ivy League approach a full year without athletic competition, the College’s process of recruiting athletes has changed significantly. COVID-19 restrictions have drastically limited in-person scouting and campus visits, and coaches face an additional challenge: convincing athletes to commit to a conference that, almost uniquely among Division I schools, has not seen competition since last March, and choosing a school recovering from the controversial elimination and reinstatement of five sports teams.


In-person athletics on hold following COVID-19 spike

(03/02/21 7:00am)

On Wednesday, the College notified student-athletes that it had canceled all in-person athletic activities due to a spike in COVID-19 cases on campus. As of Monday’s COVID-19 dashboard update, there were 122 active cases among students — over quadruple the number of cases reported as the surge was first recorded on Wednesday.



Three coaches of reinstated teams return, others decline

(02/26/21 7:00am)

On Feb. 17, the Dartmouth athletics department announced that three coaches from the five reinstated teams would return to their positions, including diving coach Chris Hamilton, men’s golf head coach Rich Parker and men’s lightweight rowing head coach Dan Roock. Former swimming and diving head coach Jamie Holder and women’s golf head coach Alex Kirk chose not to return to the Big Green staff.



Peter Roby ’79 appointed interim athletics director

(02/22/21 7:00am)

On Tuesday, Peter Roby ’79 assumed the role of the College’s interim athletics director, which he will serve as through June 2022. Roby, a varsity basketball player during his time at Dartmouth and athletics director at Northeastern University from 2007 to 2018, succeeded former athletics director Harry Sheehy, who announced his retirement earlier in February after months of controversy surrounding the elimination and eventual reinstatement of five varsity athletic teams. 


Athletes react to reinstatement following threatened Title IX litigation

(02/19/21 7:03am)

Last month, the athletics department announced the reinstatement of five teams originally cut in July: men’s and women’s golf, men’s lightweight rowing and men’s and women’s swimming and diving. Athletes from both the reinstated sports and other teams have expressed support for the College’s decision, though some say they have been left with a lasting distrust of the athletics department.



Ivy League grants seniors eligibility extensions, breaking with precedent and previous votes

(02/16/21 7:00am)

On Thursday, the Ivy League Council of Presidents voted to allow current seniors admitted into graduate programs at their schools to compete as fifth-year players. The decision is a one-time, pandemic-related exception that breaks with a long-standing Ivy League precedent limiting athletic participation to undergraduate students. 




Reinstated athletes alleged Title IX non-compliance in threatened litigation against College

(02/09/21 8:48am)

The College’s reinstatement of five athletic teams, announced on Jan. 29, was the culmination of a two-month legal process that began in early December. Before settling with the College, 21 plaintiffs from the women’s golf and women’s swimming and diving teams alleged that the program eliminations violated Title IX.


Former Dartmouth assistant coach Jennifer King becomes first Black woman to serve as full-time NFL coach

(02/09/21 7:05am)

On Jan. 26, the NFL’s Washington Football Team announced the promotion of former Dartmouth offensive assistant Jennifer King from a full-year coaching intern to the assistant running backs coach, making her the first Black woman to serve as a full-time coach in professional football history.