The Origins of Lax Across America: Covering Division 1 College Lacrosse Outside Traditional Hotbeds
Two things provided the initial inspiration for this site.
The first was something I came across several years ago while clearing out some old files.
It was artifact from my Division 1 college lacrosse career: a Johns Hopkins game-day program, commemorating the team’s annual homecoming contest, played at the game’s most revered venue, Homewood Field.
There was, though, something odd about that program.
What struck me immediately was something on the Hopkins player roster, or more precisely, something not on the roster—namely any mention, along with the listed position, height, weight, and class year, of any individual JHU player’s home state.
It seemed an extraordinarily smug, why-would-you-even-have-to-ask oversight; but also, a telling one.
At that time, after all, it seemed a stipulated fact that D1 college lacrosse players, especially those that mattered and among the schools that mattered, almost invariably came from either Maryland or New York.
Enter Jack Jasinski
The second spur came in the form of Jack Jasinski’s 7-point, breakout performance in the 2017 NCAA Division 1 lacrosse tournament.
Jasinski, I thought I heard an announcer say, was from Alabama.
How exactly does a guy from Alabama end up on a D1 lacrosse roster—let alone that of an Ohio State team playing in the NCAA tournament, and against, of all teams, Johns Hopkins?
Yes, of course, there are recruitment camps, showcase games, and travel teams, but how does how did a guy in Alabama get interested in lacrosse in the first place?
Who did he play for? And who coached him? And who did he play with?
More importantly, who did he play against?
And are there more like him in Alabama, or is he just a one-off, an anomaly?
And what about those D1 players from other states like Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Texas, Tennessee, Nevada, California, Oregon, Washington or Minnesota?
Since when has Minnesota, for instance, been producing D1 talent—and just how many Nevadans (or Texans or Kentuckians) are playing D-1 right now? And who do they play for?
Has a state like Kentucky, say, ever produced any truly top-shelf D1 talent? (The answer, I would soon discover, is yes).
Even casual research showed me that there was some great material in the answers to these questions.
Some of it could be found in national and regional lacrosse sites, and most of that material was not only well-written, but written by individuals who actually knew the game.
But there was a great deal more material—the “local” perspective on these players and lacrosse scenes in the individual “non-traditional” states that they represented.
Too often that material was either fragmentary or almost unfindable.
And much of this local coverage seemed to have been provided by writers who (understandably) did not know much about the game and even, in some instances, seemingly didn’t care.
In any case, no one, as far as I could see, had pulled together information about these non-traditional lacrosse regions and communities producing D-1 talent in any kind of comprehensive or coherent way.
What’s Included Here
Each state page also provides a list of past players from those states, with some entries dating back to the 90’s.
Finally, there are a number of feature articles devoted to topics like Indiana’s lost D1 college lacrosse program, the death of Minnesota’s first D1 lacrosse player, the day Florida lacrosse came of age, the demise of South Carolina’s sole D1 lacrosse program, the elusive D1 lacrosse star from Missouri, non-hotbed players and the annual premier event for incoming D1 freshman, college lacrosse and Ohio captured in two ceremonies, and Jacksonville’s claim to the title “Lacrosse Capital of The South”.
A Little about Me
My name is David Parry, and I am the founder and editor of Lax Across America.
And before you become unduly taken by references above to Hopkins, Homewood, and my own D1 career, you should know that my D1 playing credentials are in reality pretty thin.
My D1 career, consisting of a one-season, freshman walk-on stint at Brown, was not only brief but undistinguished.
On the other hand, I’ve been a longtime fan of D1 lacrosse, and have, I think, a fairly sound knowledge of the game.
And beyond that, my background in digital marketing and both copywriting and content creation convinced me that I was in a good position to bring some overdue attention to the players, coaches, states, and communities outside traditional lacrosse hotbeds.
This site is the result.