Saturday, March 10, 2007

Some Not Reviewed

Because the season previews are done on last year's top ten, some crews that are worthy of pre-season notice are inevitably left out. In particular, no West Coast crews were previewed. While this reflects the down year those crews had last year, it's probably not indicative of their performance this year. I find it hard to believe that Stanford will be kept out of the top 10 for long (or ever again?), and I think it's about time for Cal to break into the group. The problem for Cal, however, is that they can never really get ranked without traveling to IRAs, a trip that is quite an expense for a club team. When the IRAs move west I'm sure we'll see Cal race, as well as a few other crews, such as LMU. Stanford, Cal, and LMU really make up the West Coast lightweight contingent and are often unfairly overlooked. In the case of Cal and LMU it's very difficult to know where they stand with regard to the East Coast schools because they so infrequently race each other. When they do, such as at Windermere, it's early in the season and they're unlikely to be in top form. Even Cal's trip to Boston this year left questions since they were involved in a collision and were unable to show their true speed. The Bears do have the IRAs on their schedule this year, so perhaps we'll see them in Camden.

Another program that has pretty faithfully raced lightweight boats is Marist. Marist will be at Knecht and they also have the IRAs on their schedule. The Red Foxes have been fighting through a spate of injuries all fall and winter, a situation that could imperil the light eight. Marist would like to race a fast eight at IRAs and they finished as high as 8th in 2001, so they do have some history at the big race. I'll cross my fingers for some quick healing Red Foxes.

Also a quick update on St. Joe's. The Hawks will not be racing lightweights this year. A disappointment, but even when they start the season with a light boat they often fall away as time goes on. I do think that one of these years we'll see them put out a strong boat for an entire season.

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