Sun Tzu’s well-known quote was put forth to remind us all that in order to overcome our opponent, we must pull a pop-in on the opponent’s brain cavity and stretch our feet out for a while.
When it comes to Regional Weekend at The Box, I just adore the time honored tradition of researching northern newspapers to see how awkwardly, if at all, they describe their home town team’s upcoming visit to a Baton Rouge Regional. On average, northern states just don’t get into college baseball as much as southern states do and that’s why its so fun to see them enter the foray with so little info with which to work. While it’s a tremendous shame the lack of attention home town teams in the north receive, it does create a vacuum in the hearts and minds of those college baseball teams. Such a void can only be filled by seeing the deep green grass of the other (southern) side of the fence–one where college baseball is beloved and it’s players are (mostly) adored. Indeed, ours is an environment where good baseball is cheered no matter the jersey color scheme and bad baseball is abhorred–because really, if you’re playing bad baseball and no one is there to berate you for it, did it really happen?
In looking at our incoming regional participants, only Bryant fits the bill of the orphaned northern college baseball squad–as SELU and Houston are both deep, deep into the green grass. So search on Bryant I did.
Bryant University, founded in 1863, sits on 428 acres in Smithfield, Rhode Island. The school has an average yearly enrollment of 3600 and holds an endowment estimated at just under $150 million. [LSU founded=1860; 2000 acres; Avg Enrolled: 30,000; Endowment=nearly $700 million]
Wikipedia also provided a few bulleted notables the University holds
#1 “Safest Campus in the United States” as ranked by Seventeen.
#1 best National Co-op Placements as ranked by Fidelity Investments.
#1 “Most Attractive Campus on the East Coast” as ranked by Seventeen.
Listed as one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News and World Report.
Listed as a campus technology innovator by Campus Technology Magazine.
Member of the President’s Service Honor Roll with Distinction, a national recognition.
98% of the class of 2012 was either employed or enrolled in graduate school within six months of graduation.
and my favorite! — 4th Druggiest College in the U.S. as ranked by The Daily Beast.
Along with ALL of the above, the University holds its own page (IT”S OWN PAGE!!!) on a Rhode Island area news website, The Providence Journal. Here’s a snapshot of that very homepage taken just this morning!
LACROSSE!!!! LA_CROSSE!!!!! la-CROSSE!!!!!! And lot’s of it, too!
Well they are clearly into lacrosse up there, right? In their defense, the article given feature headline is timely—Oh wait, nevermind, that article is NEARLY TWO WEEKS OLD!!!! Ugh. Oh, and look there to the right side, there’s some college baseball. And, yes, even they realize that the college baseball news is much fresher than the lacrosse stories, because, there’s a time stamp and everything right under the headlines! Anyways, poor Bryant University Baseball team, you definitely deserve better. Here’s a link to what the Providence Journal eventually did have to say about the team’s momentous postseason birth.
Slightly better was the Providence news station, ABC6. They did have a pretty good write up for the team’s Northeast Conference Tournament Championship–which was seemingly in-depth and focused. But you know why I think it was focused and in-depth? Because the player they mentioned most in the article (totally not kidding about this) is named….wait for it…..LACOSSE!!!!! See what Bryant has had to do to get Rhode Island to pay attention to them? Poor kids having to change their name to border on the name of a sport the region would clearly rather be covering. Sad, really.
As for the NCAA tourney berth, the ABC6 site also did a much shorter write up that included flirt-winking at LSU’s Alex Box Stadium–which is nice, actually.
I truly hope that Bryant University players come to Baton Rouge and really enjoy themselves. I really do. I hope that they soak up the environment (literally, soak it up, because forecasts call for tons of rain). Because they will likely never get to see a better college baseball crowd and atmosphere than here at The Box. They’ll see fans that are knowledgeable, fun-loving, well-fed, and willing to feed them, too! I hope they bring plenty of their fans; that is, the ones that can pull themselves away from lacrosse highlights.
Welcome, Bryant Bulldogs, and please feel free to ask for the best places to eat around town!