Over the past few seasons a lot of schools have started to realize the growth of lacrosse, pertinently noting its increased presence on furniture commonly called "television." This has been a driver, in part, for programs to platform their games on the web, streaming content through athletic department websites. How schools have approached this, however, has created disparate results: Many are utilizing a pay model (either on an a la carte or seasonal package basis) while others are pursuing a free-stream model. While both are welcome developments for stickheads, the latter approach -- freebie web broadcasts -- may be the more intelligent concept at this stage in college lacrosse's evolution.
The proof is tangible: At this point in the year, I have watched more Notre Dame, Yale, Bellarmine, Vermont, and NEC home games (among others) than I have at any point in my putrid existence. The exposure that these schools have given to their programs has arguably exceeded the cost of producing free video streams of the games; these schools are benefitting from people dying to watch live lacrosse pulling up their games simply because they have a hankering for watching twine receive tickling. It doesn't even matter what the matchup is -- Wagner playing Mercer, Vermont playing Holy Cross, etc.. People just want to watch games, and the free-stream model satiates a stickhead's appetite for lacrosse without the burden of a cost-benefit analysis.
This isn't necessarily a call for all schools to adopt a free streaming model for their lacrosse games (after all, this is the greatest country in the world, and the desire to generate a little revenue pursuant to an offered product is part of the American experience). Rather, it is evidence that free streaming works for lacrosse, and that schools that adopt only a pay model should consider putting a game or two on the web for free (even if it is a terrible one) to grow the overall exposure of their programs. There is value in no-cost offerings -- just ask Seth Godin -- and a lot of athletic departments and conferences are missing the boat on a great opportunity.
Anyway, there are three games today, with action starting this afternoon and extending into business time tonight. Here is your highlight for the day:
- Providence at Yale: This isn't the prettiest Tuesday slate that the 2013 season has offered. The Friars visiting the Elis earns highlighted treatment almost by default, the residue of Wagner-Manhattan looking like an epic "NO YOU ARE!" discussion and Marquette potentially receiving from Notre Dame 60 minutes of frustration stemming from the Irish's weekend defeat at the hands of the Red Storm. Doing some quick math on a napkin, Yale appears to be about a six-goal favorite against Providence, and a log5 analysis of the game bears that out. Given that this is a Tuesday, though (the day that crazy brain worms emerge and start violently gnawing on college lacrosse), the Friars, at least, have a fighting chance.
Here's today's full schedule with links to things so that you can monitor the carnage (Wagner is in action, pals and gal pals):
Leave your notes about the games or anything else (QUERY: Did you know that, before naming this country the United States of America, the Founding Fathers briefly considered calling this union Badass Freedomtown?) in the comments below.