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ACC + Big Ten Dominance: Ryan’s Rundown Week 1

The ACC and Big Ten have been dominate to kick off the season but an upset was inevitable. We already have our first major upset of the year, and some other teams across the country are making some statement wins even though we’re still early in the season. There is still plenty of lacrosse to be played, and things will certainly change, but let’s take a look at what went on this past week.


Wednesday 2/9

Marist 10 – Rutgers 13 (MAAC v Big Ten)

Friday 2/11

Johns Hopkins 18 – Towson 12 (Big Ten v CAA)

Richmond 9 – UNC 13 (SoCon v ACC)

Colgate 10 – High Point 11 (Patriot v SoCon)

Manhattan – v Duke 17 (MAAC v ACC)

Saturday 2/12

Mercer 5 – Navy 15 (SoCon v Patriot)

Bucknell 14 – Robert Morris 12 (Patriot v ASUN)

Holy Cross 5 – Syracuse 28 (Patriot v ACC)

Marist 11 – Binghamton 9 (MAAC v AE)

St. Bonaventure 11 – Saint Joseph’s 12 (MAAC v NEC)

Merrimack 10 – Boston 12 (NEC v Patriot)

Villanova 13 – Penn State 12 (BE v Big Ten)

Sacred Heart 9 – Hofstra 21 (NEC v CAA)

Lehigh 10 – NJIT 5 (Patriot v AE)

Quinnipiac 15 – Umass Lowell 14 (MAAC v AE)

Fairfield 12 – Stony Brook 13 (MAAC v AE)

Mount St Mary’s 6 – Delaware 12 (NEC v CAA)

Siena 7 – LIU 14 (MAAC v NEC)

Air Force 9 – Denver 13 (ASUN v BE)

Lafayette 14 – VMI 6 (Patriot v SoCon)

Canisius 13 – Hobart 22 (MAAC v NEC)

Marquette 9 – Bellarmine 8 (BE v ASUN)

Bryant 19 – Providence 7 (NEC v BE)

Umass 13 – Army 14 (CAA v Patriot)

Utah 11 – Vermont 10 (ASUN v AE)

Detroit Mercy 5 – Michigan 21 (ASUN v Big Ten)

Rutgers 23 – St John’s 6 (Big Ten v BE)

Loyola 8 – Maryland 20 (Patriot v Big Ten)

Cleveland St. 9 – Ohio St. 17 (ASUN v Big Ten)

Sunday 2/13

Johns Hopkins 8 – Georgetown 16 (Big Ten v BE)

Colgate 9 – UNC 15 (Patriot v ACC)

Jacksonville 14 – Duke 12 (SoCon v ACC)

High Point 10 – UVA 11 (SoCon v ACC)

My Top 20

Since transparency is a good thing, here’s my Inside Lacrosse Media Poll ballot for this week:

  1. Maryland
  2. Virginia
  3. Notre Dame
  4. UNC
  5. Georgetown
  6. Denver
  7. Lehigh
  8. Duke
  9. Syracuse
  10. Rutgers
  11. Army
  12. Loyola
  13. Penn
  14. Drexel
  15. Villanova
  16. Yale
  17. Delaware
  18. Johns Hopkins
  19. Utah
  20. Jacksonville

I had Duke at #6 in the preseason poll because their defense did not give me a ton of confidence. Following their first few games, I feel justified in that concern. Their opening weekend showed that they should have enough offense to compensate, but their Jacksonville game shows what happens when they don’t.

Not too much shuffling happened other than introducing Utah and Jacksonville to the Top 20 while dropping Navy, High Point, Vermont, and Richmond. Richmond and High Point are absolutely knocking on the door though. I also really can’t wait to see how they Ivies look on the field after almost two years off.

Conference Comparison

This is the section of the rundown to keep track of how conferences are doing against each other. This year especially is going to be really weird. Teams are loading up on conference games, some teams aren’t even playing, and the non-conference slate has changed entirely. So, always take this with a grain of salt, but definitely do that this year.

Big Ten12-20.857
Big East6-20.750
America East1-60.143
Ivy League0-0

With this being the first full slate of games, this table really took off this week. We no longer have any undefeated conference with the ACC and Big Ten both dropping games, and we also don’t have a winless conference anymore after the ASUN picked up their first ever win as a conference (Utah over Vermont). Now all we need is the Ivy League to get going and we’ll really be into the thick of it all.

Games Notes

The big game that I need to talk about is Syracuse. The Orange admittedly had some question marks going into the season. They were replacing a goalie, some major scoring, and one of the best SSDMs in the country. Not to mention, they were bringing in almost an entirely new coaching staff. However, their debut under Gary Gait was about as impressive as it can get.

19 first half points wasn’t something to get them into the NCAA record books (they were just a bit short in each category I checked), but it was jaw dropping to see how dominant they were over Holy Cross. Seeing how they matched-up with Maryland will be a totally different story. They won’t have the same second chances at ground balls, they won’t win every physical matchup, their defensive lapses will be exposed, and their shots will almost all be contested. Truly a whole different ball game.

Sticking with the ACC, I do need to mention Duke. Their 3-0 start was largely as expected, but there were moments to give pause. While their offense was explosive at times, their defense gave other teams way too many wide open looks. There was one play in particular against Jacksonville where three different defenders were all slow to slide and let the Dolphins get an easy doorstep shot on goalie Mike Adler.

In their other games they had a great first quarter over Robert Morris, then were 11-9 for the rest of the game. For Vermont, they were down 4-2 at halftime. For Manhattan, they had a 2-1 first quarter. This may just be part of the “Duke builds through the season” cliché, but things are also definitely not rosey.

The other major games that caught my attention were Virginia just edging past High Point, Maryland routing Loyola, Villanova topping Penn State, and Georgetown’s big win over Johns Hopkins. But aside from the major programs, it was good to see Utah get the ASUN’s first win, and to do so over a Top 20 Vermont team.

This Week’s Games

Tuesday 2/15

Mount St. Mary’s – Towson (NEC v CAA)

Jacksonville – Mercer (SoCon)

Delaware – Saint Joseph’s (CAA v NEC)

Wednesday 2/16

Quinnipiac – LIU (MAAC v NEC)

Vermont – Penn State (AE v Big Ten)

VMI – Manhattan (SoCon v MAAC)

Friday 2/18

Navy – Hofstra (Patriot v CAA)

Saturday 2/19

NJIT – Harvard (AE v Ivy)

Bryant – Boston (NEC v Patriot)

Holy Cross – Michigan (Patriot v Big Ten)

UVA – Towson (ACC v CAA)

Denver – Duke (BE v ACC)

Monmouth – Princeton (MAAC v Ivy)

Hampton – Mount St. Mary’s (SoCon v NEC)

Albany – Cornell (AE v Ivy)

Marquette – Jacksonville (BE v SoCon)

Sacred Heart – Lafayette (NEC v Patriot)

Providence – Siena (Patriot v MAAC)

St. Bonaventure – Binghamton (MAAC v AE)

Drexel – UMBC (CAA v AE)

Air Force – Colgate (ASUN v Patriot)

Mercer – Cleveland State (SoCon v ASUN)

Penn St – Saint Joseph’s (Big Ten v NEC)

St. John’s – Bucknell (BE v Patriot)

Merrimack – Dartmouth (NEC v Ivy)

Lehigh – Hobart (Patriot v NEC)

Canisius – Bellarmine (MAAC v ASUN)

Villanova – Yale (BE v Ivy)

Georgetown – Penn (BE v Ivy)

Detroit – Notre Dame (ASUN v ACC)

Robert Morris – Stony Brook (ASUN v AE)

Army – Rutgers (Patriot v Big Ten)

Wagner – Fairfield (NEC v CAA)

Umass Lowell – Umass (AE v CAA)

Loyola – Hopkins (Patriot v Big Ten)

Ohio St – UNC (Big Ten v ACC)

Quinnipiac – Brown (MAAC v Ivy)

Marist – Richmond (MAAC v SoCon)

Sunday 2/20

Manhattan v Navy (MAAC v Patriot)

Maryland v Syracuse (Big Ten v ACC)


The Big 10/ACC Challenge! We get two of these matchups, and they’re both interesting: First you get Ohio State and UNC playing on Saturday, which may vault Ohio State into the solid Top 20 conversation. Then on Sunday is Maryland going up to Syracuse where someone is likely to crash back down into earth.

Return of the Ivies! We also get a full slate of Ivy League debits. Harvard faces NJIT, Princeton has Monmouth, Cornell plays Albany, Dartmouth plays Merrimack, Quinnipiac sees Brown, Yale plays Villanova and the headliner: Georgetown and Penn. Nationally relevant games in their first weekend of action is a great way to get the season rolling.

Sneaky good matchups:

Bryant – Boston (NEC v Patriot)

Marquette – Jacksonville (BE v SoCon)

Lehigh – Hobart (Patriot v NEC)

Not So Sneaky Matchups:

Army – Rutgers (Patriot v Big Ten)

Denver – Duke (BE v ACC)

Loyola – Hopkins (Patriot v Big Ten)

Video Recaps