You spent the better part of four months meticulously dissecting the 2012 college lacrosse season. You shouldn't stop now because cold turkey is a bad way to go through life, man. College Crosse is providing decompression snapshots of all 61 teams and their 2012 campaigns, mostly because everything needs a proper burial.
I. VITAL SIGNS
Team: St. Joseph's Hawks
2012 Record: 6-9 (1-5, THUNDERDOME!)
2012 Strength of Schedule (Efficiency Margin): -2.47 (53)
2011 Strength of Schedule (Efficiency Margin): 1.44 (18)
Winning Percentage Change from 2011: +40.00%
2012 Efficiency Margin: -7.84 (50)
Efficiency Margin Change from 2011: +10.35
II. "ATTA BOY!" FACT
- Given the Hawks' winless campaign in 2011 (a shared Reverse Survivor Championship, by the way), the point here should be: "Actually won real lacrosse games; huzzah and all glory to Taylor Wray." That's not where this is going, though. No way, man; that's too easy. Instead, the "Atta boy!" goes to the season that soon-to-be-junior Ryan McGee put in. The attack, after a four-point year in 2010, went absolutely ape this past season, finishing the year ranked 14th in the country in Total Offensive Value. That kind of efficiency (when coupled with his high usage and necessity to carry St. Joseph's offensive load) is impressive and probably worth at least a plaque commemorating Achievement in the Field of Nobody Expected This to Happen but It Did so Let's All Have Picnic Near the Beach.
III. "YOU'RE GROUNDED UNTIL YOU QUALIFY FOR THE AARP!" FACT
- Other than McGee playing out of his mind in 2012, the rest of the St. Joseph's offense was absolutely dreadful. The Hawks finished the season ranked second to last in raw offensive shooting percentage (only McGee, among regular contributors, shot over 30 percent on the season); only five teams finished with a worse assist rate than the Hawks' season-ending mark; and only four teams saw opposing goalies save more shots per possession than St. Joseph's foes. That's how you finish the season with an adjusted offensive efficiency value among the three worst in the country. (This is kind of important for the Hawks as their overall efficiency was hampered not especially because they were turning the ball over when they actually had offensive opportunities, but that they couldn't do much when they actually had offensive possessions.)
IV. MR. FIX-IT HAS A ONE-FIX ENGAGEMENT, AND IT'S . . .
- I wrote back in June that St. Joseph's may be a team to watch in 2013 given their overall improvement (in terms of production) from 2011 to 2012. Now, this was never meant to imply that the Hawks are going to contend for a THUNDERDOME! title next year; rather, it's more of a potential signpost that this is becoming a three-to-four win team instead of a zero-win/shut-down-the-program type of team. What's going to show me that Wray has the Hawks heading in a strong direction is not only increased overall improvement (especially with the offense), but also that they can start getting victories against some decent teams. The Hawks' strength of schedule in 2012 was among the worst in the country, although wins against Towson (which is still a maddening upset that makes faces melt) and Marist were nice. The fact remains that four of St. Joseph's six wins last year were against VMI, Wagner, Mercer, and Quinnipiac -- four of the five worst teams in Division I in 2012. Hopes are raised a little bit in Philadelphia and if St. Joseph's can start getting it against some better competition, THUNDERDOME! becomes a little less automatic kill-y.