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Growing The Program: Dayton University

7 - Published August 6, 2010 by in

MCLAFan.com is proud to introduce Growing The Program, a summer content series presented by Maverik Lacrosse.

As we all know, the MCLA is growing and gaining more and more exposure each year. To help fuel the momentum, MCLAFan.com is conducting interviews with each and every coach in the MCLA about growing their program. We hope to create a valuable resource for current MCLA teams, new programs and potential recruits. We’re proud to have Maverik Lacrosse and Bigfoot Lacrosse on board to support this movement.
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Next we head to Dayton, Ohio to check out the Dayton University Flyers‘ lacrosse team. We spoke with Head Coach Charlie Mark to find out all about their program.

Dayton lacrosse

MCLA Fan: What are your goals for program growth this off-season? What are you doing to reach them?

Coach Mark: We have a combination of 3 of the top ten best attackmen in the history of our Program. We are trying to scrimmage as many D I and NCAA teams as we can, to ensure viable defensive competition. We got surprised by getting knocked out early in the Tournament last year because we were not ready – we all agreed to never let that happen again. We want to bring some of our savvy younger sticks on Attack – to Midfield to get them more PT. We plan to launch an aggressive wing four corner offense to release the Midfield talent we enjoy.

Where do you see your program in 5 years? How will it get there?

The University of Dayton (UD) has adopted the Sport of Lacrosse. Our fans, Alumni, and Student Body are part of the reason why we now can use the football grass stadium and the turfed WELCOME Stadium for home games. The demographics of the Cincinnati / Dayton corridor having started 83 high school lacrosse programs in the last five years make sponsoring lacrosse a natural realization for UD. There is no doubt, the Administration is positively behind the Men’s and Women’s Program successes. I expect the Women’s sport to go NCAA first, and then our Men’s team will follow.

What are some key steps you’ve taken (or your program has taken) to promote your team on campus and create relationships with administration?

At UD if you want something set-up like chairs, tables, cleaned up like Christmas trees, paper shredding, moving files, moving boxes, unloading furniture for move in day, working at the Shelter – CALL THE LAX GUYS. We fund raised over $113,000 to execute our 2009 budget objectives last season. We adopted a Player’s Code of Conduct pledging loyalty, honor, respect, and relentless tenacity on and off the field to respect each other, our Sport, and our opponent. We represent the”blue collar” portion of the MCLA – we earn it.
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Maverik Lacrosse: Growing the ProgramContact: Drew Adams, Maverik Lacrosse

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What has been the most important part of your program’s success so far? Do you have any advice for other coaches (or team presidents) who are working to build a better program?

The UD Lacrosse program exemplifies a focus on a student athlete’s Body, Mind, and Spirit (BMS):

– Fifty Student Athletes coming together to build, fund, and facilitate a nationally recognized sports program ranked #5 in the national MCLA poll
– 5 democratically chosen Captains of all UD Classes mentoring, sharing skills, knowledge, and the typical hurts and pains they experience together. Each Captain learns what makes his 9 players tic, their studies, girlfriend issues, dog, wants, desires, anything – one for each other – a family away from their family
– Personal prayer, promises, and commitment to each other before every contest
– A demonstrated desire to bring pride to each other, our University, and their families – selfless field play working for the GB or the assist

Out of conference games are always an integral part of making it to the National Tournament. What do you look for in OOC opponents when scheduling?

Overall top notch team play combined with recognized National ranking—reliability of the opposing Coaching Staff and their organization

When recruiting, what do you tell potential recruits about your program and university? What do you have to offer?

Many of the aspects I mentioned above are part of our offering letter. We let them know “club” is a four letter work – we are a non sponsored sport. They understand upfront that to be UD Lax you must buy-in to BMS.

Thanks for the great interview Coach, to find out more about the Dayton Flyers lax team, check out their team website here.
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If you’re interested in learning more or contributing, please feel free to contact us at info@lacrosseallstars.com.

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7 Responses to Growing The Program: Dayton University

  1. joenandez August 26, 2009 at 3:49 pm #

    Best line in this article RE Lacrosse and Technology: “As is the case with all sports, people want to be entertained. The key question is not which technologies, but how can Lacrosse get the word out about its entertainment value?” GREAT stuff.

    • Connor Wilson August 26, 2009 at 4:48 pm #

      and to take it a step further, if “lacrosse” (that’s a nebulus term, huh?) does manage to get the word out, who decides what that word is? will people with no previous experience like the sport on a large enough scale to make it “the next big thing”? or is a larger share but still niche industry in the sports market enough? The product in some sports leagues is top notch while others seem to be real let downs. Before the NHL retooled their rules on impeding free skating it was brutal to watch on tv and the league clearly suffered. Will the college game or the pro game lead the way? does it even have to be an either or situation?

      man… you’ve opened up a wormhole. let’s drive a Mack truck through it.

    • Striding Man August 27, 2009 at 11:01 am #

      I couldn’t agree more. It’s up to us to make it happen.

      Personally, I think the MLL has a promising future if the right off-season moves are made. One of the best aspects of the league is that they are looking to innovate and make it the most enjoyable fan experience possible. They could really make some headway and cause lacrosse to get more mainstream attention. It’s just a matter of determining what exactly those right moves are…

      • Connor Wilson August 27, 2009 at 11:32 am #

        more coverage on espn for sure! full games are a big step to take but highlights on SC? shouldn’t be that hard.

        I also think the MLL and NLL need to get a lot more crossover going. Both leagues would benefit and expand their fanbase. with more and more of the same players now doing both leagues, the opportunity is clearly there. Would love to see guys like Berger play indoor pro and Steenhuis play outdoor pro.

        • joenandez August 27, 2009 at 12:26 pm #

          My biggest concern with this whole “entertainment-value awareness” is that it could potentially lead to gimmicky marketing from MLL/NLL. Highlights on Sportscenter would be a great thing, but are 2pt shots, behind the back rips and crease dives indicative of the overall entertainment value of lacrosse as a spectator sport? We don’t need to prove the value of lacrosse to lacrosse players, it’s their parents, friends, family and former players that we need to get (and then keep) engaged.

          As for the Pro game, I think they’ve started a great thing, but Fan Loyalty only goes so far for franchises that have been around only a handful of years. I still believe it is the college game that we need people to latch onto, particularly on the west coast. But the problem there is we rely on busy as hell 18-22 year old players to create awareness around the team’s activities and games. Someone should develop a standardized Campus Awareness program that can be customized and right-fitted to ANY college program. Flyers/Posters/Handouts, Merchandise, Fan Club Websites, etc, that takes minimal to no effort to create. All you need is campus permission to place them.

          Anyway, every sport has entertainment value. But in order for the sport to be entertaining to a degree that you keep coming back, you have to CARE. How do we get more people to CARE. We make it easy to be engaged, that’s how.

          I wish I had 10 bajillion dolllars so I could quit my job and dedicate the next several years to growing this damn game.

  2. Texas Forever August 27, 2009 at 9:22 pm #

    This site is cool. Just a couple clicks to login with facebook and it remembers all your favorite teams and players. You get any article about them as soon as it publishes from any source.

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