Eulogizing the 2012 College Lacrosse Season: (13) Bucknell

Mar 7, 2012; Lewisburg, PA, USA; Bucknell Bison fans cheer during the finals of the 2012 Patriot League Conference Tournament against the Lehigh Mountain Hawks at Sojka Pavilion. Lehigh won 82-77. Mandatory Credit: James Lang-US PRESSWIRE

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: Bucknell Bison

2012 Record: 9-7 (3-3, Patriot)

2012 Strength of Schedule (Efficiency Margin): 1.17 (19)

2011 Strength of Schedule (Efficiency Margin): -0.86 (43)

Winning Percentage Change from 2011: -26.10%

2012 Efficiency Margin: 6.21 (13)

Efficiency Margin Change from 2011: -0.24

II. "ATTA BOY!" FACT

  • Nobody came close to Bucknell's offensive accuracy this year. In fact, the government is knocking on Frank Fedorjaka's door right now to ask whether his team is using that green laser-guided radar that blows up pieces of small towns. It just wasn't the Bison's raw shooting percentage -- 37.06 -- that was impressive; it's how Bucknell got there: Only five teams took fewer shots per offensive possession than the Bison in 2012, only four teams saw an opposing goaltender stop fewer shots per offensive opportunity than the Bison, and Bucknell didn't even rely on man-up situations to buoy their overall shooting rate (the Bison played with the extra attacker at a rate that was right around the national average and their man-up conversion rate was only around the top-third in the country). This was a team of shooters, man: Among Bucknell's cats with at least 30 shots on the year, two shot above 50 percent -- Todd Heritage (50.7) and Chase Bailey (58.3) -- while two other shot above 30 percent -- Billy Eisenreich (30.9) and David Dickson (35.0). This was a deadly unit, and if they could have played with a stronger possession margin in their favor, Bucknell may have had a run in them to get to the NCAA Tournament.

III. "YOU'RE GROUNDED UNTIL YOU QUALIFY FOR THE AARP!" FACT

  • A 9-7 record, which includes a 3-3 mark in Patriot League play, is a solid effort for Bucknell in 2012 considering the schedule they played. However, a three-game losing streat to start the season and losing four out of their last five has to make Fedorjaka want to destroy small things with that green laser-guided radar that he gives his offensive weapons. The losing streak to start the season was a tough way for Bucknell to go through life, dropping those games with an aggregated -4 differential (two games going to overtime). The Bisons' end to its regular season was just as morose as its start, losing to Army in double overtime and dropping conference games to Lehigh and Colgate by only a tally. The margin of error in Division I lacrosse is thin, and if things had worked in Bucknell's favor a little more in those games -- the Bison lost the possession margin game in all but one of those aforementioned six regular season losses (Bucknell actually dominated possession against Massachusetts) -- the blue and orange may have had a different kind of year-end banquet. It's the little things, people. And Bucknell had a tough time figuring all of those little things out.

IV. MR. FIX-IT HAS A ONE-FIX ENGAGEMENT, AND IT'S . . .

  • The big fix for Bucknell going into 2013 is pretty easy: Build a cloning machine and replace Eisenriech, Charlie Streep, Jason Neithamer, and Nick Gantsoudes. So, yeah. Get on that, scientists. The Bisoa very a very good chance at being competitive within the Patriot League in 2013, but these are big pieces that are going to need to be replaced. There is lots of talent remaining for Fedorjaka to mold and develop, but losing a guy like Eisenriech -- even with Heritage and Dickson spitting fire -- isn't an easy replacement (especially with what Colgate and Lehigh are going to have next season).

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