Lacrosse on television is great for people like us (lacrosse people) for many reasons, the most obvious being that we simply get to watch lacrosse, and that in and of itself is fun. But a deeper benefit to watching the game is learning the game, and players, coaches, and even refs can all learn a thing or two by watching a lot of lacrosse on TV.
Photo Credit: Joseph Fitzgerald
The Pick-A-Player Approach
If you’re an attackman, pick out one attackman to watch all game. Watch them when they have the ball, and watch them when they don’t. See how the attackman you are watching fills space, or cuts through. Watch him set picks, and watch how hard he rides on every play. This works for any position, and the more players you watch, the more you will understand the full complexity of your position. Once you’ve done this a couple times, start watching other positions on the field. Begin to figure out how this complex mess really works. Trust me, it will help you become a complete player with a higher IQ.
Want to know how to shoot? Watch Virginia or Loyola players rip overhand. If they do it, you should do it.
GIF Photo Credit: Craig Chase
Risk & Reward Philosophy
Did you watch the Cuse – UVA game this weekend on EPSNU? If you did, you had to notice how Syracuse was consistently running six attackmen on the field when their second line midfield was in the game. You also had to notice how transition against this group led to multiple Virginia opportunities, and sometimes goals.
It raises an interesting point that while more offensive players might help you score, it also might make you weaker on D, and it definitely hurts you in transition play. Are the added goals you might score by having more attacking players on the field worth the risk of transition play for your opponents? Do you put five attackmen out there and a highly skilled LSM (yes, on offense) to offset this risk if you’re a youth or HS coach? Do you play more conservatively and always run a Dmid on O? Maybe you just make your O Mids play more D in practice. Watch how it works (and doesn’t work) for Syracuse, and come up with a plan for your team, based on your personnel.
Watching the D1 games has to make you think. Now make that work for you!
Watching the Boston College – BYU game from last week, I was shocked at how many times BC went to the box for a big or late hit, and how rarely BYU was given the same treatment, even if I thought the hits were all pretty similar. Both of these teams play physical lacrosse. Nothing wrong with that. What impressed me was BC’s composure after they got penalties. They just kept playing. On the road, lots of flags, and holding on to the win. Great lesson for any team out there.
Watch Box Lacrosse Too!
The level of stick skills and toughness on display are unreal. Well, actually it is real. This really happens, every single week.
Lacrosse on TV is a great thing. Make sure to watch as much as possible, and use it to improve your game. Knowledge is power, and sometimes TV actually delivers (as does the internet). Take full advantage!