Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Dying Lacrosse Heads

Question: I'm starting to get into dying lacrosse heads. I have just been wondering if you can leave the ballstop on a lacrosse head while you are dying. Will the dye also dye the ball stop, or what happens? For the last one I dyed, I removed it because it was coming off anyways, but I was wondering if it was necessary to take it off for a brand new head with a new ball stop. Might be an obvious answer, but I'm not sure.
Thanks in advance :)


Answer: Hey Sam. Sorry I missed this question. It will dye it but it won't be solid. It will come out lighter than what the plastic looks like. So if you dyed the stick black the stop would come out grey.

I did it on a goalie stick years ago and that's what happened.

Hope that helps man. Send me a photo of your die job when you're done. I want to see what it looks like!

Jonathan -

Lacrosse in Prep School? How Do We Decide Which One?

Question: Jonathan, my son is a fifteen year old junior in New York. I'm thinking about sending him to prep school so that he graduates a little bit later. He'd be 17 now when he graduates. A bit young in our opinion. He's six feet tall and one-hundred and ninety pounds. He's got a 90 average. He's gotten a fair bit of interest from colleges and his team has made it through a coople of rounds of the state tournament. He's an attackman. My question is, what prep schools should we send him to and how do we know where he should go? Should I talk to the college coaches? or call the prep schools directly such as Deerfield, Loomis, etc? Thanks for the help. The blog is great. Keep it up!

Signed, a concerned mom in New York

Answer: Hey there New York. Both approaches are solid.

I took the route you are about to go on and it made all the difference in the world for me. You are exactly right, your son is young and should take a year or two to incubate so to speak.

Many college coaches have relationships with high school coaches. They may teach a similar system that the kids can learn so that the transition to college isn't so steep. If you talk to a college coach he will tend to recommend a school based on that alone and not necessarily on the other needs of the athlete. (Size of school, distance to home, etc.) So keep that in mind when you talk to college coaches. They will have their biases.

On the other hand, prep school coaches will have needs that they want to fill now. At 6 foot 190 your son has the potential to be a stud physically as he matures. With two solid years of prep school he should graduate at 6 foot 225lbs which would give him the physical tools to be a stud on the lacrosse field. His grades are excellent and he shouldn't have trouble getting interest anywhere. Also, whatever interest he has now from college coaches, don't feel that those same schools will be on the radar next year. There may be more, and better ones, if he continues on an upward path especially if he goes to a school like Deerfield, Loomis, etc.

If it was my son here's what I would do. Sit down as a family and talk about schools he may like to go to WITHOUT lacrosse. Not schools that don't have the sport, but schools he would like to go to if he wasn't playing lacrosse. The worst thing that can happen is that your son goes to a school, lacrosse (for some reason) isn't on the interest radar, and he hates it there. I know you said he loves the sport and I don't discount that, but it's a healthy exercise that families rarely go through.

Next see if any of those schools have lacrosse coaches who are already interested in him. Give them a call and express your concerns about age etc. and where they might recommend he go. They will have their favorites.

At that point you have to weigh those prep schools against your family needs/values. Do you want him to close to home? Does he want to be far away? Rural? Large? Small?

Like anything, getting a referral is always better than going in cold. Once you decide on a couple of schools do some research and try and track down some parents whose kids have already gone there and played. How was their experience? How was the coach? Did things work out as they'd hoped? And finally, what did they do about money? Was there scholarship involved? How did they get it? Was it academic? Athletic? Just grill them. It's my experience that most people love to share their story so don't be afraid to just ask. It may take some research but in the end it could be worth it. You don't want you son to go to a school that looks good on paper only to be dissapointed with a coach who wasn't truthful or a school with really bad teachers.

Keep this in mind: Your son can play lacrosse until his twenty-first birthday without losing college eligibility unless he enrolls full-time at any college or university. Once he enrolls full-time he has five years to complete four years of eligibility. So you don't have to look at prep school as just one year potentially. They do it in Texas a ton for football. Kids practice with thier high school teams and lift weights and get hayooooge! Then they go to college as men, not boys. Your son could do the same. That's what I did and it made a huge difference. He could go to prep school then come back to Nassau county and work, take some classes, and play club ball. Then go to college as a stud when he's nineteen or even twenty. Not all families do that but it's an option that most people are not aware of. From my perspective I was going to be a twenty-three year old freshman at Notre Dame. School is a hell of a lot different when you have some years under your belt. Many kids get to college and screw things up royally because they've never been away from home and they finally get a beer in their hands without mom or dad around. just FYI,

I hope that helps. Please let me know if you need anything clarified. I will post this answer anonymously on my blog so you can refer back to it. Please stay in touch and let me know what you decide. I always look forward to hearing how things worked out, and I love seeing guys I've been able to help playing out their dream. Good luck.

Jonathan Edwards - Olympian