There has been much speculation before as to players finding new ways to slip by the grips of NCAA lacrosse rules, yet how does making heads wider change anything about the game? I have been using the new regulation heads since their arrival in the summer and have seen nothing different. If anything it allows easier ability to catch the balls as well as picking up ground balls. Just because players were pinching lacrosse heads, finding ways to make the pocket deeper without detection from the referees means that all of the vintage equipment that was used before has to be tossed away and never be used again?
I believe this rule is in place to increase financial gain for lacrosse companies and is not going to have any impact on how lacrosse is played at the collegiate level. Now since a player has a wider head, his ability to hold on to the ball is going to weaken, allowing for more defensive turnovers? Players who have been playing this game are going to play the same way as they have since they picked up a stick. I have still not heard a viable reason as to why this regulation is good for the game. As with any lacrosse head that is played with, over the length of the season, natural movements of the stick proves that these lacrosse heads are going to become narrower over time, especially with face-off players. Are players going to be flagged for penalties because they have been using a stick too long and it has naturally become illegal? In speaking with some officials this year, the first contest of the MCLA year had 50% of the sticks that were checked to be illegal. If anyone has a plausible argument for the new stick head regulation please let me know.
On a separate note, Illinois State lacrosse competed in our first game of the season on January 29th at Lake Barrington Fieldhouse in Lake Barrington, IL. Carthage Red Men hosted us for what turned out to be a great game. Game time was a little extreme being at 8:40 in the morning on a Friday, forcing most players to miss classes. However it turned out to be a very positive experience for our club team and marked the first time Illinois State lacrosse competed against a NCAA Division 3 team. Just reinforcing the fact that club lacrosse is being taken to another level.
Carthage ended up solidifying the W with an 8-6 win. The Redbirds were down 6-2 going into halftime of a modified game. There was 4 20 minute running quarters. The Redbirds were able to wake up, literally, in the 2nd half and mount a comeback. Hats off to a very physical Carthage defensive unit, as they played solid lacrosse all game. Illinois State was able to play all of our players, which consist mostly of true freshmen. Things are looking up for this program for the upcoming year and I am very excited for things to come. Our next game is against Saint Louis University February 20th which may be a very cold game in Bloomington-Normal. Check out what’s going on with this year’s team on our homepage at www.redbirdlacrosse.com