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Archive for January 26, 2007

Jan. 26, 2007 — And so, it begins …

The women’s lacrosse season begins this weekend in Florida with five games at Walt Disney World featuring Massachusetts, Northwestern, the U.S. national and developmental teams, and the club teams from Central Florida and the University of Florida.

I find it interesting that the University of Florida, which begins varsity play next year, is part of the opening festivities, since the school holds the two major “revenue sport” championships — men’s Division I basketball and the Bowl Championship Series title for football.

Historically, Florida has not been as much of an athletics school as USC or Texas, although the school has fielded national championship caliber teams in many non-revenue sports such as swimming, golf, and women’s soccer.

It’s hard to know if the women’s lacrosse team in Gainseville will develop into seimilar championship form, and perhaps it is unfair to compare the potential of Florida to that of startup teams like Northwestern, which has won two national championships only five years into its existence.

Expectation like these are unfair; lightning like the kind that the Koester twins, Kelly Amonte-Hiller, and Kristen Kjellman have created in Evanston is very, very unlikely to strike in the world of women’s lacrosse again.

But the game is growing in Florida, and recruits from other parts of the country could be lured to the campus with temperate weather and a chance to build something great. It should be fun to monitor the Gators’ progress.