Chat with Inside Lacrosse
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, our friends from Inside Lacrosse will stop by to take your questions about the 2010 season.
Our experts may also be bringing by some special guests to the chat, so be sure to check it out!
Send your questions now and join Inside Lacrosse Thursday at 2 p.m. ET!
Sean Burns (2:00 PM)
Alright folks, we're going live with IL's first chat of the 2010 lacrosse season - fire away and Danielle Bernstein, Terry Foy, Geoff Shannon, Tommy Kehoe, Paul Tutka and myself will do our best to answer your queries...
Chris Gunderson (Mount Laurel NJ)
Does Syracuse have the potential to win three straight NCAA Championships?
Sean Burns (2:01 PM)
Obviously the potential exists - there's a reason why they were voted No. 1 in the preseason poll by both the media and the coaches. There are a ton of question marks with the Orange, however, as there are with every team at this point in the year. They've got four months to prepare for the tournament, just like everybody else.
What makes a good box player a good field player? Does Cody Jamieson have what it takes?
Paul Tutka (2:07 PM)
Canadian box kids that have excelled in college have either been super athletic, defensive, two-way type players with an unmatched work ethic, or shoot the lights out offensive talents with phenomenal stick skills, even though there have been several exceptions to the rule over the years. With that said though, with schools like Brodie Merrill's Hill Academy and programs like Edge Lacrosse, we're seeing more Canadian kids crossing the boarder who are more prepared for college lacrosse than in previous seasons. And yes, Cody Jamieson definitely has what it takes. Last year's final was no fluke. He's a one in a million type player, at least that's the opinion on my side of the border.
Sal (@elfuriosopozo) (Phoenix, AZ)
Hey would it help the ENTIRE sport of Lacrosse if an NFL first Round Pick played Lacrosse in college (i.e a Paul Rabil, Max Seibald or Polanco made a team)?
Paul Tutka (2:09 PM)
Just look at what Evan Royster's football career at Penn State has done for general interest mentions of lacrosse - you cant catch a single Nittany Lions game without hearing about Royster's being an Under Armour All American lacrosse player (and how that has helped his football game).Unfortunately, the number of DI football coaches that will allow a player to miss spring ball to play lax is very small at the moment... Hopefully in the future both the lax athletes and the football coaches will be up for this.
Why doesn't IL have a dedicated site for the MLL like NLL Insider?
Sean Burns (2:11 PM)
The reason that NLL Insider exists as a separate site is because that game is much more independent in nature - The MLL is an extension of the college game in most ways - the same stars hit the field in the summer as previously hit the field on memorial day weekend.The NLL, however, has a ton of guys that either didn't play college ball, or didn't play at well-known programs, etc., so it's got a completely different fan base.At the time, it made sense. Does it mean we won't have an MLLInsider site in the future? Of course not... Just not yet.
DB's Squeeze (Snowed In)
Who will Michigan lose to, if at all? After going 40-0 after the last two seasons are they due for a loss, if so to who? They are on the road a lot this year are they dragon slayers on their quest back to Denver unblemished or does Arizona State come out of the woodwork and surprise people this year?
Danielle Bernstein (2:13 PM)
I don't necessarily think Michigan is "due for a loss" but if it does happen in the regular season, it would be somewhere in an early three-game stretch in which the Wolverines play Arizona State, BYU and Simon Fraser in succession with the Arizona State and BYU games just three days apart and both on the road. As far as ASU coming out of the woodwork, they're definitely a big question mark. On one hand, they were a final four team the last time they played and return a good amount of the offense from that team but on the other hand, they haven't played in a year. They'll have to shake off some rust but they can definitely contend assuming they can pull things together with a young defensive unit.
With Tavares, Gait and Junior getting older, who is the next superstar that will be the face of the NLL in years to come?
Paul Tutka (2:14 PM)
Too many to pick from. Not sure if our sport has that Crosby vs. Ovechkin head-to-head the NHL has, but we definitely have some amazing mid-20-year-olds that are legit, just doubtful they will turn into legends like the guys mentioned in your question. The next Gait is probably the guy that did things this past summer that only Gary Gait did before him, and that's Cody Jamieson, who won the MSL's Rookie of the Year, MVP and scoring title in his first year out of Junior lacrosse, which is unheard of in lacrosse or any other sport for that matter. If we're talking potential legend and future multiple pro record holder, Jamieson is the only one whose growing resume looks anything like the guys you listed. My money is on Cody, who'll be in the NLL at this time next year.
Navy seems to be heavily underrated and there was no mention of them beating UVa in a scrimmage last week. Is there a reason for this?
Sean Burns (2:16 PM)
Andrew, we didn't have any ability to mention what happened there because it got switched to an earlier date at the last minute - we had somebody heading there but they couldn't change their schedule. So we didn't have any eyes there, and neither school released any official report, so we had nothing to go by... We get out to as many as we can though...
John Frank (Snow Belt)
How confident are you guys in Billy Bitter, Ned Crotty and Cody Jamieson being first team All Americans?
Danielle Bernstein (2:17 PM)
It's hard to not be confident in those three and they're definitely heavy favorites for the honors but at the same time, the fight for a spot on the first-team is hardly a three-horse race. Guys like Rob Pannell and Jack McBride deserve mentioning in that conversation. Steele Stanwick is set to have a huge year at Virginia as the new leader of the attack. I don't think you can rule out a guy like Grant Catalino if Maryland's attack lives up to the expectations they've had placed on them since arriving in College Park.
Ken (Frederick Maryland)
Why is it that public school kids are look down on in terms of playing lacrosse at the next level? and why are private school kids treated like they are gods to the sport?
Sean Burns (2:21 PM)
Ken, I think the issue, at least in Maryland, is that the truly elite teams that gather the majority of attention are in the MIAA or IAC in the DC area. Certain areas (like Anne Arundel County and Baltimore County) have very competitive public school programs that put players onto DI rosters, but for the most part, the private schools are on another level.But go to a state like New York and the scene is full of great public school teams. It really just depends on where you're at. The good thing is, with the increased summer recruiting and travel teams, players from any high school program can get in front of top coaches and show their stuff...
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Which College Lacrosse players do you think will be great enough for the NLL?
Paul Tutka (2:22 PM)
With a lot of the high profile guys that have never played any indoor ball, even with their best intentions, it's usually hit and miss. A lot of the guys that tore it up offensively in college (and even the MLL later on) usually are more effective offensive type defenders due to their athleticism and killer first step, and we've seen that with guys like Paul Rabil in Washington, Joe Walters this year in Rochester, and even Max Seibald last weekend in his Philadelphia Wings debut, where he was one of the Wings more relentless, constant pressure defenders in the Rock loss. The more sure-things are guys that have spent a couple summers playing Junior A lacrosse in Canada, which has been an increased trend over the past few seasons. Grant Catalino (Maryland) and Joel White (Syracuse) both played for the Six Nations Arrows in '09, Joey Resetarits (Albany) was one of the top guys in Canada last summer playing for the St. Catharines Athletics, and Brendan Gibson (Yale) really impressed in Langley and is draft eligible in the 2010 draft. Watch out for the guys that might be a little less obvious, but have already shown they can hang playing box lacrosse. Another great example is Josh Funk (Ohio State), who almost won a Minto Cup with Burnaby in '07, and is currently one of the Minnesota Swarm's top cover D guys.
Matt O'Donnell (Syracuse, NY)
Given the somewhat recent parity in Division 1 lacrosse in the last 10 years, do you think that if Syracuse is to win it all this year, it could be considered one of the best dynasties of all time considering how competitive recruiting has gotten across the entire division?And where does John Galloway figure in the history books of All-Time Goalies if he gets one or two more rings?
Sean Burns (2:26 PM)
Whether you love or hate the 'Cuse, it's hard to argue that they aren't already one of the dynasties of the sport.With two rings in two years, you can already argue that Galloway's name should come up in that discussion. One or two more rings solidifies that spot, at least from a team leadership standpoint.
Andrew (Newark, DE)
What is it going to take for the Blue Hens to win the CAA this season?
Sean Burns (2:32 PM)
I, for one, really like Delaware as a dark horse to make a run. The CAA is very very tough though - you've got a Top 10 team in Hofstra, an always tough UMass team and the rest of the league that's ready to go every week. I think the biggest thing for Delaware that was missing last year was a team chemistry... Supposedly that is back this year so we'll see how they fare in the league.
Steve (San Jose)
The Stealth are still undefeated... Do they go 16-0?
Paul Tutka (2:37 PM)
Undefeated seasons are beyond rare in the NLL, so I'll say no, they don't got 16-0, but they're definitely a great team that not only is getting huge games from their "name guys", but are also getting a lot of support from their depth guys. Right now only the Stealth and probably the Toronto Rock are getting consistent play from absolutely everyone on their full roster at every position, making so many spots interchangeable, which is huge. I wrote an article a couple years back when Buffalo, Minnesota and Philly jumped out to impressive undefeated starts, and the trend over the years has been... team's that do undefeated damage early, usually fizzle out towards the end or early in the post-season. Washington has to make sure they're not peaking too early. But again, awesome team who are playing by committee and succeeding.
Jason Branch (Herndon, VA)
I am an aspiring laxer. I wanted to know how much impact do gloves have on your skill set and/or do they make you a better player?Thanks,Godly Branch;]
Sean Burns (2:40 PM)
Well, it's a two-part answer. Yes, having a pair of gloves that feel right will help your game quite a bit - for me the biggest thing about any piece of gear was having it be an afterthought when you're playing. If I'm trying to catch an outlet and start a fast break , I don't want to be thinking about how good or bad my gloves feel.But, that said, you can get by with almost anything that is legal and still play to the best of your potential because gear is just gear. The game is about the wizard, not the wand.
Brandon Bedanr (Rexburg Idaho)
what do you think will be the next big time school to add a mens D1 lax team?
Sean Burns (2:43 PM)
Tough to say.The program that most people point do would be Michigan, because of their success, support in the community, and the fact that their new AD hasn't ruled out the addition of new sports the way their previous one had.But adding a new non-revenue sport to an athletic department with a full NCAA Bowl Subdivision scholarship load from football is extremely tricky. Until the rules surrounding Title IX change, things are going to grow more at the level of schools like Jacksonville and Detroit rather than the Michigan's and BYU's of the world.
UF pulled in the #1 women's recruiting class in the country without ever having played a game, and they played the women's national developmental team tough in an exhibition earlier. What kind of expectations should Gator fans have for the first season, as well as moving forward with the coaching staff?
Danielle Bernstein (2:43 PM)
Starting a completely new program rarely results in instant gratification in terms of winning and Florida will definitely face its challenges in a tough American Lacrosse Conference but I don't think it's unreasonable for Gator fans to have high expectations a couple years down the road. The school, which is known for having one of the nation's most prolific athletic programs , has put the commitment behind the team. They obviously have high expectations for the program and all the necessary components (great lacrosse-only facilities, a committed coaching staff, the ability to recruit top athletes) to contend far sooner than most Division I startups would.
Your thoughts on Albany?
Sean Burns (2:47 PM)
Very good team that ran into some trouble a year ago but should be at or near the top of the America East in 2010. Their attack is legit and should be a lot of fun to watch. Can't wait to see them take on UMBC.
@prospectlax (Mount Prospect, IL)
With Notre Dame in the Big East this year then will clearly have a tougher schedule than in the past. Without the automatic bid for the conference this year - does that hurt their chances for an at large bid come May?
Sean Burns (2:49 PM)
Notre Dame didn't have a cupcake schedule in the GWLL - last year was a down year, but remember that league put three teams into the 2008 NCAA tournament and two of them (ND and OSU) made it to the quarterfinals.Not having an autobid hurts, but if Notre Dame has anything like the run they put together last year, they're right in the mix for an at-large. If they finish .500, they'll have nobody to blame but themselves.
Calvin Britton (Marshall University)
How do you pitch lacrosse to a college that has a football and basketball only mindset? The lacrosse team's record was better that the football team's.
Sean Burns (2:52 PM)
The thing that athletic departments seem to be most swayed by is the argument that lacrosse is a great way to get students into the school that otherwise wouldn't consider their university. A couple years ago I did some work on the story package of teams moving up to Varsity (from the issue with FSU and Michigan kids on the cover) and that was what athletics folks said - you can use the sport as a recruiting tool for students... That way it's not about the cost of the sport for purely sports sake, its about the benefit the school gets out of having the program.
Quint's Casserole (Mom's House)
With the Season opener for Div. 2 opponents NYIT and Limestone right around the corner. Where do the teams stack up against one another? How much of a factor is NYIT's new coach after having long standing coach Jack Kaley, some regarded one of the best coaches of all time, step away for retirement? Predictions?
Sean Burns (2:58 PM)
Obviously a big game for both schools and an early litmus test for where they'll stand nationally. Kaley's retirement is a huge deal for the sport as a whole rather than just DII (the man has a legacy a mile long), but the hiring of Bill Dunn as his replacement should keep the program on similar standing (Dunn was his assistant and Kaley's choice for the job from the beginning).I think the biggest question for NYIT is how Kevin Hennessy looks this spring after missing most of last year due to injury. If he's at 100 percent, they'll be a force. If he's hampered, they'll still be solid, but that is a tough league to come out of.Limestone lost a ton of players from last year's squad, but there's a great base of talent for the perennial south region champion. I don't really know what to expect in this one because I havn't seen either team play, but I'm sure they'll be ready to hit the field after a long offseason.
Jared Ward (Orlando, FL)
What do you think of the Titan's move to Orlando?
Sean Burns (3:01 PM)
Early indications are that it's going pretty well... Jiloty went down there for the opener and the local fans seemed to love it. It's been a huge year of growth for lax in Florida in general, with the Titans, UF women, Jacksonville men and women all firing up their inaugural seasons. It stings to not have an NLL team in the NYC metro area, but it's more about having a viable franchise than having a New York presence for the league.
Sean Burns (3:02 PM)
And with that, I think we're gonna call it a day - had a lot of great questions but couldn't get to all of 'em this time around.Thanks for reading and be sure to check back every week at 2PM for another chat.If you have any wish lists for guests to bring on board, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll try to get them on for you.
Sean Burns (3:10 PM)
OK just got a couple responses emailed from Terry Foy and Tommy Kehoe: Here ya goTerry's response to the question about what we think about Albany this year: Albany has pretty much the same strengths and weaknesses they had entering 2009. Still need to solidify their goalie play, get more out of their defense and find the midfielders who provide the right component parts to their stable of talented attackmen. That said, they don't lose much, so there's reason to believe they'll be improved all the way across the board. Plus, Brian Caufield is a year older and one year more able to take games over.
Sean Burns (3:11 PM)
Terry's response to a question about the Denver-Syracuse opener next weekend: This is easily one of the most interesting early season games in recent memory. I think outside of Cuse's obvious question marks (repacing Nims, Abbott, Hardy, Perritt, Smith), Denver's plan is a complete mystery. We know thy like a pair of attackmen a lot, but if you expect defense to be their hallmark, that's asking a lot of guys that haven't had very long to get used to Coach T's system. Not to mention how tall an order it is for anyone to go into the Dome and win.
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