After reading the introduction and first two chapters of the book, The Rise of Gridiron University, I have learned a lot about what the book is going to representing, it’s key goal in the representation of football in America, and the focus on the attention of key cultural distinctive values in America, starting in the 1800’s. I believe the main takeaway and overall theme that the author is trying to represent inside the introduction and first couple of chapters of this book is detailing that the success in the creation of football was derived on the fundamental implications of cultural inspirations throughout college campuses. The author’s main arguments were based around the credit in cultural and social attachments to American football, as the controversial sport began to awaken into a successful beginning because of these tying measures. American football was a controversy in the making due to major injuries, deaths that concerned safety issues, academic disloyalty, fears of the lack in institutional growth through education and higher intellectual research, and by most of all, the focus that institutions are driven on cultural publicity interest instead of focusing towards higher academic education through institutional growth. I believe the author’s main argument that he distinguishes in this academic book so far is that American football survived its rocky beginning due in part to its strong ties with cultural ideals as institutions adapted to change through hosting sporting events to distinguish its relevance to the general public in high demand of advertisement. The author uses a lot of detail in the first two chapters to represent gymnastics and football’s beginnings into why men should play sports. The first chapter talks a lot about early gymnastics as this was the key sport that was important and popular for young men to take a part in. The reasons for the importance in gymnastics for young men at the time was due to the need for extra cortical activity outside of the classroom where men could let loose in practicing healthy body movements, relaxing their mind through exercise, and calm the body in physical movement that taught moral discipline in their life. Chapter two focuses on the outlook on how culturally the reasonings have changed into why men should play sports. As this chapter focuses on a more masculine importance of why it is healthy in the physical and mental reactions of life when men take part in sports, specifically football. It goes on to examine and present the important structural matters of the good vs bad into how football has affected institutions where change is a necessary need for the progression through universities across the country. 

– Joshua Joyce

Appalachian State University: The Rise of Gridiron University (