(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
With the basketball season ending, I looked at some accomplishments and noticed that Jim Boeheim became the winningest (in terms of percentage) basketball coach in Syracuse University history this season, passing Coach Edmund Dollard.
How do I know this you ask? Well Eddie Dollard was my great grandfather (More on this later-I am going to start posting some family tree things). But to the point, it made me think of my other family members that had associations with the University.
Then I thought of my Grandfather. G'Pa Dollard was a varsity letter winner as the starting catcher for the Syracuse University Baseball team way back when. Then I thought, SU with a baseball team would be awesome.
So, with my little head being started in motion, I've decided to list five reasons why Syracuse should restart their baseball team, and five reasons why I know that it will never happen:
Why Syracuse University should restart their baseball program.
1. Fan support. I bet if you polled the fans of Syracuse they would want a program back. Who wouldn't want a Big East baseball school in their backyard?
2. Recruiting for other sports. Sounds outrageous considering we have a beast of a Lacrosse program but I noticed when I attended the University of Tennessee for a semester that athletes care about other athletics at the school they attend.
UT's baseball team sucks, but the fact that they have a team is a plus for recruits from the other teams.
3. Lemoyne College is now a 1A independent. Before, Lemoyne was the city's team to follow, since they made the NCAA tournament almost every year.
Now they they have been kicked out of their conference, they will virtually NEVER get an at-large bid for the tournament, making it unexciting (see: Syracuse not making a bowl game for five years). Syracuse in a power conference can make a run.
4. Keep the local talent around. Now, granted there are some local ballplayers that stuck around to go to Lemoyne, the real talent leaves. Pat Macananey from Westhill High School left town for Virginia (recent 8th round draft pick to the Diamondbacks).
Philip Pohl from Cooperstown High left for Clemson. No offense, Dolphins. Syracuse University is more attractive than your school.
5. Stadium. With Alliance Bank Stadium already in Syracuse, there would be no necessity to build a stadium for the team. The city-run stadium just got grass and would be playable as long as it is scheduled properly in conjunction with the Syracuse Chiefs.
Five reasons why Syracuse Baseball is dead and gone forever.
1. Competition. Like stated above, the Orange would have to compete with two major baseball teams in the area. The Syracuse Chiefs, AAA semi-pro baseball affiliate of the Washington Nationals, and the Lemoyne College Dolphins are the two main dogs in this city.
Not only that, but they would have to compete with their own Lacrosse team. Could Syracuse gain more popularity than them? Sure. But the reason they won't is for my next reason.
2. Money. This is by far the most prominent reason. Giving out scholarships and paying for coaches are not cheap. With Syracuse being a Lacrosse town, popularity with Syracuse Baseball would always be second fiddle to something.
This program would lose money, and if there is one thing I have learned from Dr. Gross over these past years, Syracuse loves money.
3. Weather. The weather sucks in Syracuse. There are ways around this, sure. Build a training facility. Build batting cages indoors. While this is all good, it is all money as well. When I attended the University of Tennessee, they just had inter-squad scrimmages outside at their ballpark. In December. Can Syracuse do that?
4. Title IX. This is what killed the baseball program, and I'm afraid this is what is going to bury it as well. The program will never come back because of this.
If you bring back the baseball program, you need to bring in a women's program to counter the men's program. Because it has to be balanced, bringing back one program would be the cost of two. And I think we all know that is all about the Benjamins.
5. Lacrosse. Like stated above, when you have the most storied Lacrosse program in all the land, it would be difficult to have a successful baseball team on top of it. At other schools, baseball is IT.
Recruits like the spotlight. Playing second fiddle to the Lax team would not be something that a good recruit would want to do and they would definitely take that in to consideration when selecting a school to play for.
So, sorry Gramps. I'm afraid baseball is gone and isn't coming back anytime soon.
We can dream though, right?
As written on http://thesaltinewarriors.blogspot.com