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2011 NCAA Lacrosse Tournament: Quarterfinals "Fun Factors"

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You really can't have a bad weekend of lacrosse when you pit 80% of the nation's top-10 teams against each other.

Well, you probably could.  You'd need a hell of a confluence of circumstances to occur, though:

  • The monkeys that were hired to perform at the intermission between each doubleheader fail to show up. Something about KoKo refusing to sign the performance contract in ink, holding firm that he only signs such documents with his own feces. Celebrity monkeys can be a real hassle to deal with. 
  • Bad red rope licorice.  Everywhere.  That's a bad scene, man.
  • Notre Dame head coach Kevin Corrigan gets on the public address system, indicating that he'd like to give you a lecture about pragmatic defensive strategy in an era of hyper-equipment innovation.  It wouldn't be so bad, I guess, if there wasn't going to be a test at the end.
  • All fans in attendance are issued, and required to wear, Quint Kessenich face masks.  Wearing a tie with a Windsor Knot large enough to hide a hard-boiled egg is optional.
  • Your pre-, post-, and in-game entertainment is . . .  screaming children that want ice cream and DADDY, DADDY, DADDY CAN WE GO TO McDONALD'S LATER?!?

So, yeah, that would really take the shine off of the diamond.

Anyway, below is the fun-down for this weekend.  If you have no idea what a "Fun Factor" is, it's probably best to read this quick tutorial before giving yourself an aneurysm.

FUN FACTORS: MAY 21 AND 22, 2011

1. May 21 12:00 Cornell Virginia 6.9547
2. May 21 2:30 Johns Hopkins Denver 6.4015
3. May 22 2:30 Duke Notre Dame 6.2547
4. May 22 12:00 Syracuse Maryland 6.0112

Some quick comments follow after the jump.

  • Honestly, I think these games are shaking out pretty fairly.  Before I threw them into the ol' computing machine, I thought that Syracuse-Maryland and Duke-Notre Dame would be flip-flopped.  No big deal.
  • Cornell-Virginia has all the makings of an offensive explosion, which is why it's so far ahead of the pack.  The Big Red are currently rated as the second funnest team in the country; the Cavaliers are third.  These two teams should get up and down the field and put on a real shooting display. 
  • Sneaky positioning out of Hopkins-Denver. That Pioneers offense is really fun to watch, especially when Mark Matthews starts to do stuff with his stick that few guys have even thought possible.  Since the Syracuse game, Hopkins has really started to pick up its pace of play (a fact due in no small part to the evolution of the Blue Jays offense).
  • Notre Dame is not, itself, a fun team.  They only rank 15th on the meter.  Duke, contrastingly, is the epitome of fun, having held the the first position in the factor ratings for what feels like the billionth week in a row.  The Devils tip the meter in this one, although I have a strong suspicion that the Irish are going to want to drill the tempo of this game square in the ground just as they did 12 months ago.  I'd be a little wary of this game's position on the "Fun Factor" scale.
  • I am very excited to watch Syracuse-Maryland.  I write this in bold text so that I'm not accused of attempting to kill the President while simultaneously being accused of calling Orange-Terrapins a bad game. I think that this is the most balanced contest of the weekend, with little gaps between each team's talents and strengths.  If any game has the potential to be nip and tuck and head into overtime, it'll be this one.  The ol' "Fun Factor" worries about this one a little bit as Maryland is only the 51st fastest team in the country in terms of total possessions per game.  Otherwise, this will be a super terrific game of lacrosse.