Friday, January 30, 2009

It's Cold Outside

The Princeton men's and women's lacrosse teams, along with the rest of their Ivy League rivals, will begin practice Sunday on the scheduled Feb. 1 start date.

Before any Ivy League school has a formal practice, most of the rest of Division I will have already been practicing for more than two weeks and will have scrimmaged twice. There have already been regular season Division I women's games played (last weekend in an event in San Diego).

TigerBlog has one question about the early play: Why?

This January in the Northeast has been colder than most, but even the best January's are not exactly warm. TigerBlog understands the idea of getting in maximum practice time and being ready when the regular season starts. There is also the idea of playing important games early in the year and then having them be huge factors come NCAA tournament time for seeding and at-large bids.

Still, is it really helping to drag your players outside in mid-January in the 20 degree weather when you're trying to be at your peak three to four months later?

The Princeton men will practice for three full weeks and scrimmage twice before opening the season against Canisius on Feb. 21, which itself seems sort of early. The following week, Princeton will play a huge game against Johns Hopkins; since Bill Tierney has been Princeton head coach, the Tigers have never failed to get into the NCAA tournament after defeating Hopkins in the regular season.

Even with a young team, it's hard to imagine how starting practice in mid-January would have Princeton more ready to play that game when it rolls around.

No comments: