Monday, February 20, 2006

USRowing Medical Commission on Lightweights

The December 3rd USRowing Board of Directors meeting minutes states that the USRowing Medical Commission is creating "procedures for safe weight loss for lightweights." The Commission will write a recommendation paper on this subject. The group working on it is pretty impressive - Kris Carlson, Jo Hanafin, Larry Klekatzky, Tim Hosea, a representative from the NCAA (huh?), Paul Fuchs, Charlie Butt, Greg Hughes, and Andy Card. I suspect the death of Scott Laio at last year's Dad Vails prompted, or at least increased the urgency of, this project. The rumor I heard is that this group, or at least Tim Hosea, the head of the Commission, would like to institute hydration tests at lightweight weigh-ins.

It was quite interesting, though, that it fell to Wisconsin heavyweight coach Bebe Bryans to ask that a lightweight coach be added to the group (no word on if that's been done). Bryans was Michigan State's head coach for years and is now at Wisconsin - both Big Ten schools. I think of Big Ten programs as quintessentially heavyweight. At Wisconsin Bryans is responsible for the lightweight program too, so given that the lightweights are the most successful program in Wisco's boathouse (men or women) it only makes sense for her to take care of them.

The results of this group will almost certainly have an impact on collegiate lightweight rowing in the US. Even if its recommendations come out too late for this season, they will probably go into effect quickly.

What's up with the inclusion of an "NCAA representative?" Are lightweights an NCAA sport or not? They give lightweights none of the benefits of being an NCAA sport yet somehow want a say in making the rules? Since the Commission refers to NCAA wrestling rules, perhaps the rep is there just to give input on wrestling. Whatever, but isn't that like the NCAA - "I'll have my cake and eat it too."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

the ncaa governs womens rowing. lightweight rowing is not its own sport-it is simply an event -like the pair, four etc. -within womens rowing.