Why is field hockey unrecognized on a nationwide level?

Professional field hockey is not talked about often but is popular around the country.


Madisen Serdar

Antioch field hockey competing against Francis Parker.

Field hockey is a relatively well-known sport and has a good amount of players at the high school level. It is not uncommon to hear about athletes playing collegiate-level field hockey, especially at Antioch Community High School. The ACHS field hockey team has a pair of NCAA Division 1 commits including senior Cameron Pluciennik and senior Allie Curry. 

When it comes to playing competitive field hockey after college, many athletes do not consider it a possibility because of how little the sport is known and the lack of imprint it has on the sports world. Junior Dean Brewer, who is a self-proclaimed sports fan, speaks on the notoriety of professional field hockey.

“I thought it only went to college and then nothing after that,” Brewer said.

A sport like field hockey should have a larger impact in the American professional world, but it lacks publicity. The sport has a large following in Europe but falls short in interest to Americans. Part of the reason for this could be that it is a female-dominated sport in America or the lack of support for the sport outside of schools. In America, people are always looking for sports to watch or to participate in, unfortunately, field hockey still lacks interest from most Americans. According to scholarshipstats.com, in 2020 64,365 athletes competed in high school field hockey but at the collegiate level that number drops to a mere 6,248. When you compare that to an American classic like football, 1,043,872 play high school football and only 93,776 athletes play in college. 

Most sports get a lot of coverage on TV or social media which boosts popularity around the world. The lack of coverage that field hockey gets is noticeable and plays a role in the sport’s lack of popularity in the states. Freshman Colby Costello shares his thoughts on field hockey’s popularity.

“I feel like [field hockey] could be as popular as other sports if it was put into the world more,” Costello said.

The common consensus is to grow the sport of field hockey in America. For that to happen it needs to first, grow in the media coverage and gain support for the sport from popular athletic sites and corporations. For a sport to have so much popularity among high school athletes, but so little representation, it comes down to not being a highly consumed sport on a day-to-day basis.