We recently published the player pool for the upcoming MLL supplemental draft. Scrolling through that list of 856 can be pretty daunting, so I’m going to break things down to get a better idea of the players trying for a spot in the league.
The birth years of those in pool span a huge range going from 1962 all the way up to 1994. Given the success of Casey Powell and John Grant Jr. last season, some attention may be given to the older crowd on the list. Some of the most notable names in the pre-1980 crowd are: Ric Beardsley, Chris Schiller, Josh Sims, Doug Shanahan, Matt Striebel and Liam Banks. There’s no question that the players in this group can still be competitive with the more recent grads.
What actually is surprising is that hundreds of colleges have alums on the list. The main schools are all very well represented across all the NCAA divisions, as well as other countries, with Syracuse providing the most alums with 27. Following them (in order) are UMass, Ohio State, Virginia, Hofstra, Hopkins, Delaware and Loyola. Random observation: Dowling, Limestone and Salisbury all have more players in the pool than either Duke, Cornell or Notre Dame.
There’s a good international flavor to the list beyond just the US and Canada. Players from the Iroquois nations, South Korea, Italy, Poland and Australia are all on the list. Regarding states and provinces though, things are interesting once you go beyond players in New York (204 Players) and Maryland (91). Next in line are Massachusetts (71), North Carolina (46), New Jersey (42), Pennsylvania (40), Ontario (35), Florida (34), California (32), Connecticut (31), and Ohio and Colorado (29). As this draft is a great place to find practice players and those who can fill in during NCAA and NLL commitments, it’s good to see that most of the top locations are all near existing MLL teams while still having a strong representation from non-traditional areas.
Lacrosse is often touted as a sport where anyone of any size can play well. There is definitely a wide range here as you have a few of the smallest players who are 5’6″ and 150 pounds all the way to 6’7″ and 270 pounds. The average though is right around 6’1″ and 200 pounds.
The position distribution is actually right on target for what you would expect to see. Middies are where you have the most (300), followed by Attack (175), Defense (172), Goalies (95), FOGOs (67) and LSMs (42). One note for the goalie position is that Devon Wills is on the list again, as she is taking another shot at making an MLL game roster.
Other player notes
Given Canada’s gold medal last summer at the world games along with several other countries emerging in the field game, it will be interesting to see if some of the more prominent indoor players have their names called. A couple of the big names in the running are Cody Jamieson, Sid Smith, Kyle Rubisch, Jesse Gamble, Garrett Billings, Rhys Duch and Jordan McBride. It’s also good to see a few of the service academy players still in the mix. Tim Henderson, Garrett Thul and Jeremy Boltus are all in the pool.
There are plenty of other stories than can come out of this list of players. Many players are making comebacks, some are all but guaranteed to be drafted as they just missed the protected player lists while others are just fans tossing their name in just in case they get called in from the stands for the game winning play in overtime (Oddly, No. Zack Dorn is not on the list). The box talent runs deep in this draft as does the proven MLL talent. It will be interesting to see who the teams decide to give a chance to for this spring’s training camps.