All posts by alexcampbell2019

Everybody’s Game: Ensuring Access to Opportunity in Soccer

By Alex Campbell
Medill Reports

Soccer has become increasingly popular across America in recent years. However, youth participation rates have declined, partially due to the high costs of many youth programs and lack of access to opportunities to play the game.

I spoke with officials from various levels of soccer here in Chicago, from the Park District up to the United States Soccer Federation, about what is being done to ensure access and opportunity to the most popular sport in the world.

Photo at top: Winter indoor soccer program at Calumet Park (Alex Campbell/MEDILL)

It’s never too early on a Saturday for soccer

By Alex Campbell
Medill Reports

Every Saturday morning, a few bars on Chicago’s North Side fill with soccer fans eager to come together and cheer on their favorite teams, even if they’re 4,000 miles away. This is a look at a day in the life of American fans of the English Premier League.

Photo at top: The Globe Pub in Lakeview (Alex Campbell/MEDILL)

An Unlikely Cinderella, Loyola Tops Brother Rice for 8A Title

Alex Campbell
Medill Reports

The last week of the regular season, then 8-0 Brother Rice defeated 8-0 Montini Catholic to be crowned Catholic League Blue Division champions. Given the incredible seasons of both teams (Rice coming off a 2-7 season, Montini making their debut in the conference), it seemed there was no better possible ending to the Catholic League season.

The Loyola Ramblers had other ideas.

Having started 3-3, they won their next 11 games capped off by a magical run through the playoffs en route to a 13-3 win over undefeated Brother Rice in the Class 8A State Championship on Saturday night at Memorial Stadium in Champaign.

“This is one of the most special seasons of my life, and I’ve been playing football since I was 7 years old,” said Loyola head coach John Holacek following the game.

As a former University of Illinois and NFL linebacker and winner of the 2015 Class 8A Championship with the Ramblers, that’s quite a statement for Holacek to make.

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Illinois Democratic candidates encourage supporters to get out the vote

By Alex Campbell
Medill Reports

A week ahead of November 6th’s elections, Democrats running for state-wide office gathered in Chicago’s 48th Ward to ask for supporters’ help in the campaign’s final days. The candidates took turns speaking to the standing-room only crowd at the Broadway Armory in Edgewater, headlined by gubernatorial candidate JB Pritzker and attorney general candidate Kwame Raoul. Pritzker characterized this years elections as a “fight” that would only be won with assistance from people like those in attendance. Supporters were energized by the message, and many enthusiastically volunteered to give their time to the campaign effort.

Photo at top: Illinois state flag(Alex Campbell/MEDILL)