Dayton's lightweights were undefeated last spring and one of this year's captains is a lightweight. Looks like they're giving lightweights some respect at Dayton.
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
The fall season has begun with Wisco racing at The Milwaukee River Challenge and Georgetown racing at the Head of the Potomac. Wisconsin looks to be off to a good start as they went out to beat up on some local crews. Well, Purdue was there so that's not entirely fair and didn't they win the lightweight event at Dad Vails not too long ago? The lights finished in second behind the heavies and before the 2nd heavyweight boat. Wonder if they were racing even boats? Georgetown lights (finishing fifth) also finished behind one varsity boat (3rd) although both lightweight eights beat the 2nd varsity boat. The lighweights raced even crews. Navy won the race. Other than a few head races here and there, the first real look at these crews will be in Boston when they'll race as lightweights.
Friday, September 23, 2005
The same article on the Trojan Navy web site (see previous post) states that "the PAC-10 has proposed legislation to make Men’s Rowing an NCAA sport with a championship." If this were to pass, what would happen to the women's lightweight national championship which is now part of the IRAs? If the IRAs essentially became the men's NCAA championships, women would not be allowed to race there. Would there have to be a separate regatta? In its great quest for inclusiveness, the NCAA just seems to tear rowing apart. Championship regattas should be a celebration of rowing that includes men and women. We train together, we race together, and on occasion we even race together in the same boats. The NCAA wants none of that. Separate but equal is the watchword for NCAA rowing, you can bet your shirt on that.
It's amusing to read about the current scholarship tussle in the PAC-10. One thing lighweight women aren't familiar with is getting paid (aka scholarships) to row. My guess is that few lightweight programs offer scholarships (Wisconsin does?), and that includes extra "need based aid" in the Ivies. Am I wrong? Lightweight women's rowing is probably the last real college sport in which the participants compete for the love of their school and their sport.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Georgetown announced that they hired Jim O'Conner as their new lightweight women's coach. Last year Rebecca Besant became Georgetown's first (I think) lightweight women's coach. Previously Jimmy King acted as both the heavyweight and lightweight coach. Rebecca's move was good news for the program because it suggested that the school was putting some effort behind its lightweights. As well they should since their crews have been steadily finishing higher and higher at IRAs. The Georgetown example shows how a program with a good rowing tradition can put some effort into lightweight rowing and develop an excellent reputation (the men are good too). When Rebecca left (I think she moved to Africa) many people outside of the program were holding their breath to see if the school would remain committed to lightweights. Jim O'Conner's hiring shows that they are. A good move for Georgetown and a good move for lightweight rowing.
Saturday, September 17, 2005
Reading over the ECAC announcement that Princeton won the Boathouse Sports Trophy, I noticed that Princeton's lightweights weren't even mentioned when the school's results were discussed. It's as if they don't exist. This led me to look at the results for Eastern Sprints last spring. Lightweights don't count in scoring for the Willing Points Trophy. Novice fours count, for goodness sake! I don't know if lightweights count for the men, but I'll guess they do since they were listed in Princeton's results in the ECAC announcement. What's up with this?