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GOOD NEWS: Lacrosse has the BEST Parents

GUEST BLOG: by Chris McCartan. Parent of lacrosse players, Lawyer by day, captain and National Champion at Syracuse as a player and Co-founder/owner of Carolina Miners one of the best travel programs in the country. His street cred in the lacrosse and professional world is off the charts. So we made sure he was on the board of CLP. Here are his thoughts on the project.

When Kevin started this project, my only concern was the perception of judgment. Lacrosse families have invested so much of their time and resources into their players’ love of the game, and the last thing anyone wants to hear is, “you’re doing it wrong…”

But that’s not where we are. In fact, for reasons laid out below, we’re the youth sport that only needs some tweaks in consensus when most others need an overhaul.

Consider the following:

1. Despite being North America’s oldest sport, lacrosse’s mainstream popularity is a relative recent dynamic. And in the South, a lot of our families saw their first game when their daughter or son strapped it up. This has afforded everyone a level of humility in our circles, as we’re all still learning (even the admins of this certification). Think about it… and make it personal: we’ve all seen (or know) that guy who blows gaskets on the umpire… because he’s seen some Yankees games. It happens a lot less in lacrosse, as even the biggest hot-head has his “maybe I don’t know this part of the game” moment before chirping.

2. It’s NONSTOP action. Boys and girls (especially with the great adjustments made to restarts). This means less downtime. Which means less time to stew. And less time to lament. Which forces Mom and Dad to focus on the ‘now’ and not on the ‘was.’ Time between downs on the gridiron brings out the know-it-alls. Spells between pitches keep the boo-birds howling. And the pageantry of cheerleading (which absolutely IS a sport) fosters tons of opportunities for Karen and Ken to run their mouths. Not our sport. We’re on to the next possession.

3. We’re tough. REALLY tough. Yeah: I flexed. But these players are grinders. Which means that Mom and Dad have dirt under their fingernails. That translates to perspective; if the WORST thing that happens to us on a Saturday in Charleston is a slash being called a brush… we’re playing with house money.

4. Save rugby, this is the most fraternal sport on the planet. It’s broad and far-reaching, but it’s a family. And NOBODY wants to be the “oh $#!+… here comes Mr. Suchensuch…” when he pulls up his lawnchair (and clipboard… and stopwatch… and rulebook). There are hills to die on, especially when it comes to our kids. But one of those can’t be whether a releasable penalty should’ve been locked in. Tomorrow will come and we’ll all still be committed to the greatest sport on the planet; fortunately, lacrosse parents get that and value the opinions of other families.

Bottom line: the job of this certification is easier than any other sport. We’re catering to family-first/fun-first/integrity-first parents. And that makes it exciting, as we’re able to fine-tune versus demolish-rebuild. Thanks in advance. But what we’re really going to encourage going forward are war-stories. Experiences you’ve had that we can address, so that we can update our curriculum to foster or alleviate the good and bad you see. Some of you may look in the mirror; we’re happy to be the catalyst to progression and there’s NO shame. For the rest, let this certification be your pulpit. Kevin has loaded his Board with street-cred and if you get an affirmative spin on your concerns, you can bank it as vetted.

This is exciting.


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