With all do respect to Jousting, Lacrosse should be the official state sport of Maryland. The state of Maryland has the most youth lacrosse participants with 50, 856 kids. Many of these players move onto to play college Lacrosse and litter rosters of the best programs in the country.
The mens Lacrosse final four has been going on for 39 years and had at least one local team in the final game 24 out of those thirty nine years. The last four years there have been 6 local teams in the Final Four and there has been at least one every year since 2001.
Lacrosse is the fastest growing game in the world with professional and college teams popping up as far west a California and as far north as Minnesota.
Despite the lack of local teams in this year’s Final Four, there is still a local flair has many local players litter the rosters of the Final Four participants. There are 22 players from Maryland on the Virginia, Duke, Cornell and Syracuse rosters, a number that not is high as previous years but is still a very impressive number.
This year’s Final Four is in Boston and should get some record numbers, however, everyone that is a lacrosse “expert” admits that Baltimore is the best place to hold the Final Four. Manypeople are pushing for Baltimore to be the permanent location.
In 2007 the Men’s Lacrosse Final Four was held at M&T Bank Stadium and had an average crowd of over 48,000. This number was only 2,000 people less then attended the Men’s Basketball Final Four that year.
Johns Hopkins, Maryland and Navy all had down years but they have some big time recruits coming in next season that should translate to at least one of them making the Final Four. Many other schools like Loyola and UMBC should also be major factors next year, and hopefully my alma-mater Towson University can make a return back to the NCAA Tournament.
The rest of the country just happened to catch the local Maryland schools on a “down” year.
Fear not local lax fans, these schools will be back.
The sport would not be where it is today had it not been for Maryland. Despite all the growth of lacrosee as a sport Maryland still is and always will be the “king” of lacrosse.