I got out to a couple of practices yesterday and will attend more this week. It’s ‘spring training’ for me too.
Coaches, PLEASE check your SPAM FOLDERS because a lot of my emails go to a public school email address and many of those flag the questionnaire. Players and Parents, mention this to your coaches! I want a MUCH higher response rate this year! If you need, email me at email@example.com for another copy and if yo have a non-school email, send that to me to make it less likely to happen in future years.
After last year’s abbreviated high school and college seasons I was pretty much left with MLL and PLL over the summer and that just wasn’t enough.
A few club events, including one national incident.
At least my beloved Islanders made a deep playoff run for once, but the Jets and Giants took away any fall memories from blooming, albeit seeing Ali Marpet going to a Super Bowl is REALLY COOL. Tom Brady should thank his creator that he gets to play with Ali . . . AND, since there are no Syracuse or Cornell grads on either Super Bowl roster, I see that as a great sign of who will take Spring supremacy in upstate NY lacrosse circles . . . heck, we ALREADY have FOOTBALL supremacy this year!
You’re lucky to play with this guy Tom!
There was no better sales pitch for how good Ali Marpet was this season than what happened to the Bucs’ offensive line, quarterback and offense as a whole when he wasn’t playing. Marpet featured in 13 games and allowed just 10 total pressures on Tom Brady. He didn’t get beaten for a sack all season and had a dominant 87.8 PFF run-blocking grade.
When Marpet went out of the lineup, the offensive line collapsed. His replacement surrendered seven total pressures in the first game he wasn’t there. Quenton Nelson is a phenomenal player and a perennial All-Pro talent, but he hasn’t been nearly as good this season as he was last year. We shouldn’t fall into the trap of just assuming All-Pro talents had an All-Pro season every year.
– – – – – –
On January 26th, 2001, twenty years ago today, one of my all-time favorite sports personalities passed away. Al McGuire was a fantastic basketball coach known mainly for Marquette, but even better known for his stint as a color analyst with Billy Packer and Dick Enberg on NCAA basketball broadcasts in a day when the national broadcast was a big deal, instead of today’s 20 games a day TV lineup. Al was known in his day of coaching for being one of those few coaches who really connected with his athletes, many of which were not his skin color. In the 1970’s that was not a given at all, and the coaches who could ‘recruit the ghetto’, as it was known back then, really had an advantage and Al was basically the acknowledged king of that.
I brought that up because we all want to see our sport remove racial issues from the on-field play. Over the years there’s been an emphasis on participation in the sport as the focal point of outreach, and while that’s important it always runs into some things the sport can’t control. You can’t force a kid to play a sport and there are some issues with modern youth sports that work against some participation, such as specialization as kids are more likely to play one sport year-round instead of trying others.
I’ve made the point before that there was more African-American participation in the 70’s and 80’s at top programs than even today in many ways. US Lacrosse Magazine did a feature a couple of months ago about Hobart’s ‘Soul Patrol’ and in the late 80’s Hobart won national championships with FOUR African-American starters. Outside of Hampton can ANYONE think of any top programs having that?
FLN is going to support the Nation United “We Stand Initiative”, which focuses pretty much on the ON-FIELD BEHAVIOR issue of race. To put it in it’s most simple way, the initiative is to drive out discriminatory behavior ON THE FIELD, where it should be able to be controlled the easiest.
No approach is perfect, but the one laid out to me last night is very much in the right direction.
You’ll be hearing more of it as it is rolled out and we ask you look at it with an open mind.
Now, back to Al . . .
I believe that’s with Butch Lee after they won the 1977 NCAA title over UNC.
Here’s a few of his famous quotes and I picked these because I really admired his judgment of people and how the human personality worked.
You can see the rest HERE
I’m not really sure how Al would have been received in today’s woke world, or in a world of pretty simplistic social media, but I suspect he’d find a path to navigate . . .
One thing you might notice is that content is a little thin right now, when it would normally be very busy, and a lot of that has to do with the pushing back of the first day of practice, but mostly because the colleges have not really put out much content to us. On first glance it looks like the Sunshine State Conference will pretty much stay close to home and we could well see home and home games on the schedule but until the conference itself finalizes plans we are guessing. Those who are following the national scene know that the Ivy League is not sure they will play and that would mean D3 conferences like the NESCAC might also be a no go.
Something to pray against.
When those press releases come in, we’ll play catch-up. We are close to launching the new version of FLN’s web site and to give you a feel for it, this a print of the top of the home page:
One thing you will see is that our Submit Recruit Questionnaire has been SUBSTANTIALLY upgraded and will be more insightful into the player!
Look soon for it!
One final note, the picture used for this article is from the Suncoast-Cardinal Newman game and that might not be possible this year . . . I hope I am wrong