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The Sicatoka

Lacrosse at a "DI" UND?

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IMO, hockey was about as close to a no brainer as you could have.

NDSU had no brains? I guess people from NDSU listened to people like you talk, while UND listened to another group.

Thanks PCM, I am glad someone got my point even though it was subtle.

My point was that basically what PCM stated. There were people back then that thought UND was stupid to ever try and compete with the huge hockey powers of established programs of Michigan and Minnesota. How could UND ever compete against these sports. "Not being an established program will kill UND as few team will be willing to pay to travel up here when there are closer competitors elsewhere." Hockey would be a huge drain on the athletic budget. Startup costs for hockey are not cheap especially compared to other sports. The money for hockey wasn't available right away. I'm sure in the 1940s they were also worried about money.

However some 60 years later we would find out they were HUGELY wrong.

I'm glad UND didn't listen to those people.

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NDSU had no brains? I guess people from NDSU listened to people like you talk, while UND listened to another group.

Thanks PCM, I am glad someone got my point even though it was subtle.

My point was that basically what PCM stated. There were people back then that thought UND was stupid to ever try and compete with the huge hockey powers of established programs of Michigan and Minnesota. How could UND ever compete against these sports. "Not being an established program will kill UND as few team will be willing to pay to travel up here when there are closer competitors elsewhere." Hockey would be a huge drain on the athletic budget. Startup costs for hockey are not cheap especially compared to other sports. The money for hockey wasn't available right away. I'm sure in the 1940s they were also worried about money.

However some 60 years later we would find out they were HUGELY wrong.

I'm glad UND didn't listen to those people.

Cratter,

My biggest problem with lacross is that there are no local kids to recruit. Back in the 40's GF Central had some of the best HS hockey team in the nation, and although some Minnesotans laugh at the idea, GF in general is one of the greatest hockey towns in the country. I grew up getting my A$$ kicked by the GF teams in the 80's and early 90's. Ijust find it difficulty to see recruits coming to UND when there are so many other options out east. Maybe there is a Canadian or Shattuck Pipeline we can tap into for lacross

I may be wrong about about lacross, but then again, so may you. :lol:

I don't get the dig about NDSU hockey. What does that have to do with anything? FYI, I was in the minority on the NDSU venture. I put my deposit down on NDSU hockey. IMO the more college hockey the better. :silly:

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If it was such a no brainer to add hockey at UND, as you claim,

Why was it not such a no brainer to add hockey at NDSU at the same time? That is the "dig on NDSU hockey."

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Let's get back to discussing what UND will have to do to support DI in all sports. I know that might be contraversial, but I think womens hockey was a huge mistake. Rumors from GF, and they are just rumors, is that the womens team is a $500,000 drain on the athletic budget. I know it's Title IX related, but those kind of numbers, if true, are very disturbing. I just don't see a womens team paying in REA cash flowing ever. Does Tiltle IX require the womens team equal facilities?

So based on Sicatoka's numbers above, women's hockey costs are $174 general team expenses + $24.5k recruiting, + coaches salaries + scholarships + fraction of game management & adminsitration . Contrast that with a $2 Mill increase ito move all sports to DI. IMO, women's hockey was a no brainer to add - it would be the onlyDI sport other than men’s hockey that UND will have a chance to be a dominant DI power in. If you have an asset like the REA, it would be foolhardy not to maximize its benefit. The question is: what is a decent shot at a DI national championship worth? In any other relatively minor NCAA sport, UND would have to spend millions in capital improvements and have a half-million $ budget to have a shot. Women’s hockey gives UND that shot. (Never mind future Olympic exposure from UND Olympians- which will happen - but not in 2006)

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My biggest problem with lacross is that there are no local kids to recruit. Back in the 40's GF Central had some of the best HS hockey team in the nation, and although some Minnesotans laugh at the idea, GF in general is one of the greatest hockey towns in the country. I grew up getting my A$$ kicked by the GF teams in the 80's and early 90's. Ijust find it difficulty to see recruits coming to UND when there are so many other options out east. Maybe there is a Canadian or Shattuck Pipeline we can tap into for lacross

I may be wrong about about lacross, but then again, so may you. :silly:

Roper:

Having no local kids to recruit would be a major concern. But if UND wants to attract students from well outside the state, lacrosse would be one vehicle to attract them. Give 36 kids 1/3rd of a ride- they still have to pay 67% of the way but they get to play DI lacrosse. Right now, there is no men’s lacrosse DI team west of Chicago except the U of Denver. There’s got to be hundreds of kids capable of playing DI lacrosse on the West Coast, Canada, in the Denver area, and in the Midwest who don’t have the financial capacity to enroll at DU or Notre Dame (or private east coast schools), but would be able to handle UND’s tuition. With few other schools looking to fill the lacrosse void in the midwest and west, why shouldn’t UND attempt to fill that void, especially considering there’s an existing first-rate facility to play in and UND is looking for ways to expand its geographical base from where it draws students. For a school like NDSU to attempt to add lacrosse would make much less sense - it already has a first-rate baseball field in Newman ( which ties NDSU’s hands - doubt NDSU would ever drop baseball ) - it doesn’t have a cultural base (hockey base) that would take to lacrosse - and NDSU leadership and fans want so badly to be viewed as a legitimate DI school, that a “niche” sport like lacrosse would offend their sensitivities.

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Again, I like the idea of Lacrosse at UND. It does make more sense than baseball and softball, and one can make a very solid case for UND not sponsering those sports. That pains me to say because I've always been a fan of baseball, as it was always my best sport. The problem with baseball and softball at UND, aside from the climate, is that we can never realistically compete with NDSU for recruits (local or otherwise) because they have the luxury of playing in Newman Outdoor Field. It would be the exact same thing if they do end up adding hockey, trying to compete for recruits with us when we have the REA in our pocket. Correct me if I'm wrong, but there is no way that UND could cut both baseball and softball in favor of adding lacrosse, unless we added both men's lascrosse and a women's sport? Is there women's lacrosse? I do think lascrosse fits for UND, if it could be played in the Alerus. I'm sure the Alerus would be more than willing to put anything in that building with all of their financial troubles. And I would think that with as few schools sponsoring lacrosse, travel wouldn't be that big of an issue, especially if it was played in a facility like the Alerus. Denver would be an instant rival. And it should be pointed out that many of the schools that sponser DI Lacrosse, also sponsor DI hockey which could help out UND if they picked up the sport. Also, many of the universities that sponsor DI lacrosse, also play DI-AA football.

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Again, I like the idea of Lacrosse at UND. It does make more sense than baseball and softball, and one can make a very solid case for UND not sponsering those sports. That pains me to say because I've always been a fan of baseball, as it was always my best sport. The problem with baseball and softball at UND, aside from the climate, is that we can never realistically compete with NDSU for recruits (local or otherwise) because they have the luxury of playing in Newman Outdoor Field. It would be the exact same thing if they do end up adding hockey, trying to compete for recruits with us when we have the REA in our pocket. Correct me if I'm wrong, but there is no way that UND could cut both baseball and softball in favor of adding lacrosse, unless we added both men's lascrosse and a women's sport? Is there women's lacrosse? I do think lascrosse fits for UND, if it could be played in the Alerus. I'm sure the Alerus would be more than willing to put anything in that building with all of their financial troubles. And I would think that with as few schools sponsoring lacrosse, travel wouldn't be that big of an issue, especially if it was played in a facility like the Alerus. Denver would be an instant rival. And it should be pointed out that many of the schools that sponser DI Lacrosse, also sponsor DI hockey which could help out UND if they picked up the sport. Also, many of the universities that sponsor DI lacrosse, also play DI-AA football.

UND has been about even with NDSU baseball over the last 5 years. Newman hasn't helped out that much

and yes there is women's lacrosse, Northwestern won the title last year (in only their 3rd or 4th year of having a team)

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UND has been about even with NDSU baseball over the last 5 years. Newman hasn't helped out that much

The success of NDSU baseball is equally affected by the college baseball-unfriendly climate of ND. Still, I have to believe that when a coveted baseball recruit narrows his choices down to UND and NDSU, that 80% or more of the time that recruit is going to choose NDSU because of the fact that NDSU's facility is, at minimum, 100 times better than UND's.

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Is there women's lacrosse? I do think lascrosse fits for UND, if it could be played in the Alerus. I'm sure the Alerus would be more than willing to put anything in that building with all of their financial troubles. And I would think that with as few schools sponsoring lacrosse, travel wouldn't be that big of an issue, especially if it was played in a facility like the Alerus. Denver would be an instant rival. And it should be pointed out that many of the schools that sponser DI Lacrosse, also sponsor DI hockey which could help out UND if they picked up the sport. Also, many of the universities that sponsor DI lacrosse, also play DI-AA football.
A major advantage to adding lacrosse IMO is that lacrosse conferences in the west and midwest are still in their infancy. There is likely a five-ten year window, that if UND acted now, it would later be viewed as an established power - on par with Big 10 / Pac 10 type schools - much as we are perceived in hockey. That potential realistically can never exist for a UND softball, baseball, tennis or golf team. If we dropped those sports at the varsity level, they still should be offered as club sports.

Men’s league - Great Western Lacrosse League

Ohio State

Notre Dame

Butler

Denver

Air Force

Quinnipiac (probably not permanent)

add North Dakota --> permanent autobid for the Great Western Lacrosse

Women’s League - Mountain Pacific Lacrosse

Cal-Berkeley

Stanford

St. Mary’s

Oregon

Denver

add North Dakota --> permanent autobid for Mountain Pacific Lacrosse

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I love the lacrosse idea too. I would definately go to that. I wouldn't only bet it would be more watched and liked than baseball or golf, but even mens (and maybe womens) basketball. It would fit in right there with hockey.

Lets make this a reality!

I too like the idea of UND lacrosse. But, I just don't see the athletic department going for it while a DI move is in the works. It does make sense to cut baseball and softball, if they're willing to make the realistic moves. ND's climate doesn't lend itself to golf either, but I just don't like the idea of cutting a programmed required for Big Sky. Maybe we won't get in, or some agreement made, but I think keeping our options open for the time being is the best move. So that said, I'm afraid financially the money saved cutting baseball/softball will not compensate the costs of lacrosse. Does anyone know how big a budget it takes to field a lacrosse program? I would assume with it's niche status in the West it would approach hockey, but I could be wrong. Does anyone know?

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Folks keep bringing up the Big Sky. That's presently just as hypothetical as UND shuffling its sport offerings to add lacrosse and drop baseball, softball, and golf.

Cost for cost? An analysis would need to be done. Buning comes from a place that had lacrosse (Army). If there was interest I'm sure he could use that as a reference.

As far as recruits, even the established NCAA programs are recruiting good athletes and putting a crosse into their hands for the first time. (See here.)

Scan a list of Division I lacrosse All-Americas, men or women, and you'll find that virtually all played several sports in high school. Virginia men's coach Dom Starsia never saw his best defensive midfielder, J.J. Morrissey, play lacrosse before offering him a scholarship; he signed Morrissey based on how he hit the hole as a tailback. Starsia has recruited other athletes who never even played lacrosse before arriving in Charlottesville.
Edited by The Sicatoka

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I too like the idea of UND lacrosse. But, I just don't see the athletic department going for it while a DI move is in the works. It does make sense to cut baseball and softball, if they're willing to make the realistic moves. ND's climate doesn't lend itself to golf either, but I just don't like the idea of cutting a programmed required for Big Sky. Maybe we won't get in, or some agreement made, but I think keeping our options open for the time being is the best move. So that said, I'm afraid financially the money saved cutting baseball/softball will not compensate the costs of lacrosse. Does anyone know how big a budget it takes to field a lacrosse program? I would assume with it's niche status in the West it would approach hockey, but I could be wrong. Does anyone know?

It would be difficult to move to DI at the same time as adding lacrosse. If adding lacrosse makes sense, it should be a multi-year goal, not a short term one. Negotiations with the Big Sky and whatever other conferences could include the pre-condition that lacrosse may be added later - so perhaps UND could be exempted from offering a varsity sport like golf/tennis. Also, maybe a real option that should be considered is staying at DII and offering men’s/women’s DI lacrosse. That way the 27 extra full football scholarships don’t have to be added (as well as the 27 Title IX women’s scholarships). Because DII does not offer men’s/women’s ice hockey championships, UND can technically play up a division in four sports, not just two.

The more I think about lacrosse the more I like it - especially because even at the DI level, lacrosse schools only offer partial scholarships. UND easily has some of the lowest tuition around, expecially from reciprocity states (including California under the western compact). A 1/3rd or 1/4rd scholarship player at Denver or Notre Dame or Johns Hopkins or Syracuse still have to cough up over $100,000 in tuition during their playing days - the athlete's opportunity cost at UND would be much less. It would seem that dual football/lacrosse athletes from California/Minnesota/ Illinois/Colorado would relish the option of playing either (or both). Since the U of Minn does not offer either men’s or women’s lax, what better opportunity for UND to emerge as a sport leader/camp location for lax in the Twin Cities, which is growing fast.

The annual cost of fielding a lacrosse team would probably be $400,000 - that’s with 12.6 scholarships. But if it is considered that maybe 40 athletes would part of the team, with 12.6 scholarship effectively about 70% of the tuition/room/board/books would need to be paid for by the athletes themselves. Since these out-of-state athletes in all likelihood would never have attended UND, around $250 k in additional tuition would be paid to UND because of the presence of lax.

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I too like the idea of UND lacrosse. But, I just don't see the athletic department going for it while a DI move is in the works. It does make sense to cut baseball and softball, if they're willing to make the realistic moves. ND's climate doesn't lend itself to golf either, but I just don't like the idea of cutting a programmed required for Big Sky.

The Big Sky doesn't field baseball or softball teams.

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Negotiations with the Big Sky and whatever other conferences could include the pre-condition that lacrosse may be added later - so perhaps UND could be exempted from offering a varsity sport like golf/tennis.

If the day ever comes good luck pushing that.

Also, maybe a real option that should be considered is staying at DII and offering men

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If UND were to move to DI, an increase in attendance is often cited as how the additional costs would be financed. However, bball attendance does not apear to have increased compared to NCC years for the 'SU's. UND is actually outdrawing both SDSU and NDSU in men's and women's basketball. UND's NCC schedule hasn't started yet, while NDSU and SDSU both have already had their 'meatiest' DI games. More than half of UND's games have also been single-header nights, which makes the attendance comparable to SU's single games. What's sad for the SU's is that the strongest portion of their home schedules have already been completed (i.e. Alabama women and Manhattan men for both SU's).

Average Attendance

UND M 1963

NDSU M 1893

SDSU M 1891

UND W 2116

NDSU W 1610

SDSU W 1578

Perhaps the anticipation of a conference season drives both season ticket sales and single ticket sales for Nov.-Dec. games.

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A couple more lacrosse notes:

We think lacrosse is the next major college sport," said Brian Bedol, the president and co-founder of College Sports TV. "We're probably not a long way from having 100 games on in season. Now that's not all on the linear network, it's on broadband and OnDemand, too. But within two years I think that's what you'll see."

Hmm ... a camera- and satelllite-ready Alerus Center in a conference with Notre Dame and Ohio State equals how many annual national TV appearances?

Participation in High School Lacrosse growing rapidly:

http://www.laxpower.com/common/ParticipationRates2004.php

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If UND were to move to DI, an increase in attendance is often cited as how the additional costs would be financed. However, bball attendance does not apear to have increased compared to NCC years for the 'SU's. UND is actually outdrawing both SDSU and NDSU in men's and women's basketball. UND's NCC schedule hasn't started yet, while NDSU and SDSU both have already had their 'meatiest' DI games. More than half of UND's games have also been single-header nights, which makes the attendance comparable to SU's single games. What's sad for the SU's is that the strongest portion of their home schedules have already been completed (i.e. Alabama women and Manhattan men for both SU's).

Average Attendance

UND M 1963

NDSU M 1893

SDSU M 1891

UND W 2116

NDSU W 1610

SDSU W 1578

Perhaps the anticipation of a conference season drives both season ticket sales and single ticket sales for Nov.-Dec. games.

I have been watching that situation, also. It's extremely difficult to get "name" dI schools to travel to low to mid major schools. Looking at Montana's schedule, they very rarely get anybody decent to travel there either, and obviously they've been dI for many years. But of course, at least they have conference games with established rivals to make up for their lack of attractive non-conference home games. Maybe getting guarantees would offset the lack of home attendance to a degree, but as far as ticket sales are concerned, a move to dI would likely have a negative impact for UND. I think that's a very important fact that needs to be considered in discussing a potential dI move.

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I have read with interest all the posts regarding lacrosse becoming a sport at UND. To be honest, I have little knowledge, appreciation or interest in the sport but that doesn't mean it is not a good idea. However, with most of North Dakota and NW Minnesota probably having the same attitude (partially because it is not played in HS in the area), do you really think this could become a sport that would pay for itself at UND?

In answering my question, please don't compare it to baseball, golf, hockey many years ago, etc. Just try to convince me that it could produce revenue - especially when you consider that all players would come from out of the area which means higher recruiting costs and higher tuition costs.

Don't take my post as negative, I just naive when it comes to lacrosse (I do know that it is a rough game and its participants are true athletes) and need more information to understand how it could possibly be a profitable venture.

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I'll try with some of your concerns; however, I won't avoid comparing to what is done today. (And some of what you ponder is addressed in the preceding 100 posts in the thread.)

Pay for itself? Admittedly a dream. (Few college sports do.) Do better than what we offer today? It'd be tough not to. Baseball averages about 250 per game.

DU lax draws 3300 (capacity) to their place more than once. They drew 1100 in a snowstorm against Air Force. The DI Lax Championship is now only second to the DI mens basketball championship in annual attendance! (Yes, they've passed hockey.) Lacrosse fans are out there, especially just across the border to the north: tap in.

What you'd be trying to tap into in the region you mention is: (1) hockey fans needing a spring "fix", and (2) football fans needing a speed and contact game with a season that starts up soon after the Super Bowl, and (3) people looking for an excuse to tailgate in the spring. ;)

Players not from the area? UND hockey does just fine with a roster made up of a lot of players from 400 miles or more away from Grand Forks. Admittedly you'd want to try to take some good local athletes and get them onto the field with a crosse in their hands also. (I shudder at the thought of what a Weston Dressler-like or Ryan Chappell-like athlete could do in all that open space.)

Edited by The Sicatoka

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