For those of us who love lacrosse, the season is just around the corner, and the University of Michigan finally announced their 2016 schedule yesterday (12/9)...and it's quite a gauntlet that will need to be run.
For those of you keeping track, Michigan has six games against teams who went to the NCAA Tournament last season: North Carolina, Colgate, Brown, Maryland, Ohio State, and Johns Hopkins. The Terps and the Blue Jays met each other in the Final Four, with Maryland falling to eventual champion Denver.
After the usual exhibition game against Marquette, Michigan will begin the season on the road against the North Carolina Tar Heels. The Wolverines then come back home for a Valentine's Day match-up against Colgate at Oosterbaan Field House before heading on the road for two weeks against Penn and Detroit. The game against Penn is the first of three against teams from the Ivy League. Three games against Ivies is the most since the 2014 season when the Wolverines faced Cornell and Yale.
Michigan and the Blue Hens of Delaware will face off in the Orange County Winter Invitational on February 27. The Wolverines are 0-2 against Delaware, and haven't played each other since the 2013 season.
The Big Ten slate starts on April 2 at home against Maryland, before another two-week road stint against Rutgers and then Ohio State for the Showdown in the Shoe prior to the Buckeyes' football spring game. Finishing up the regular season will be home and road games against Johns Hopkins and Penn State respectively.
The conference tournament then starts on May 5 in Baltimore, while the NCAA tourney starts on May 14. If ever there was a season that required complete lacrosse, this would be it. Even with returning leading scorers Ian King and Mikie Schlosser, and goalie Gerald Logan, this team will have to play the best lacrosse of their lives to make it to Memorial Day weekend.