As the lacrosse recruiting season continues, I wanted to make some comments about why we do this, how we came to our approach on it, and why it’s important for younger players.
Those who have followed the last 30 days or so will notice that most of the submissions are from the Girl’s side. That is very disappointing to me because it is showing the Boys have lost track of one of the responsibilities of what it is to be a top athlete.
Maybe it’s an old-fashioned belief, but I still believe middle school kids/players look up strongly to the high school star players they watch. In some of the recruiting articles, you see some of this, how a commit had looked up to an older sibling or a family friend and that their introduction to the game was from seeing that person in action. Maybe the Girls understand this more and interact with younger players more these days. I hope that is not the case.
One reason we have this feature is to help ‘grow the game’, which is a sentiment that the lacrosse community has pushed for many years now, and is very important to helping this sport continued its’ growth path. We have expanded the questionnaire to give the readers an even deeper appreciation of the player and more insight to the younger player.
I hope the kids now committing who haven’t filled out the questionnaire will take a second look or thought, and do so.
Now, a comment about why we insist on either the high school uniform or plain clothes be used in the pictures, as opposed to the Club uniform.
We are not anti-club. Is it my favorite thing to cover? No, it honestly isn’t. The final straw for me was about four years ago, when I was making the rounds at a Club event and received an email after the event. A coach of a U-10 (or 9, not sure) emailed me and noted he had seen me walking around the event and wondered why I had not written up his team’s 4-0 pool play record that day. Club events for me are mostly about networking, keeping up with information and even some gossip on who is breaking out.
One thing I have tried to do as well as possible is to stay fully agnostic among the Clubs in the state. I’ll happily cover a Florida club doing well at a national event on FLN, but within the state I do not take sides. Even with that, I have been accused of favoring one club over another at times, and the easiest way to combat this perception is to just eliminate as much Club labeling as I can.
Sometimes we will get a press release for tryouts or a request for ad space and we tend to publicize the first tryout release, but nothing more unless they want to advertise. There isn’t much demand for that anyhow, which is why sometimes it seems like we are covering one over the other.
And part of that policy is NO CLUB UNIFORMS in a Commitment article. I’ve had lengthy discussions with a few Club coaches about this and the policy will not change. Are there instances of where the Club was able to promote a player better than the high school? Yes, but that doesn’t matter to the policy. Clubs have plenty of ways to highlight their own successes through their own social media outlets and other ways, and can use the Commitment article to do so on their platforms. Readership on this site is far more driven by the high school scene than the club scene and the Commitment articles are targeted to link the player to their high school and college choice.
There are a few commitments in the past that did not get posted because I sent an email back to the recruit asking for a different picture or two and none were provided. If you were one of those kids who didn’t see their submission published, we can still produce a new article for you with the right picture.
Our kids are committing to colleges are a higher rate and we want to keep that information flowing to the greater lacrosse community. Remember that you are idols to many kids; don’t ignore that dynamic! Take 10 minutes and pass on your knowledge to them!