The Tewaaraton Trophy was Thursday night in Washington, D.C. Two Syracuse players, goalie John Galloway and defensive middie Joel White were on hand. As expected, neither or them went home with the hardware (like the Heisman, offensive stats win Tewaaratons), thought there was a little bit of a surprise at the top.
Heading into the post-season, the trophy was Cornell's Rob Pannell's to lose. Then Cornell lost...to Virginia. And Virginia's Steele Stanwick put on a scoring display for the ages in the NCAA Tournament en route to winning the National Title. Hence...Stanwick is your 2011 Men's Tewaaraton Trophy winner.
While Stanwick certainly proved his worth in the NCAA Tournament and there's something to be said for his Kemba Walker-like performance, some folks still think Parnell's body of work deserved the trophy more. Like College Crosse's Matt Glaude...
To me, though, Stanwick was not the best player in college lacrosse this season. I have no problem with including NCAA Tournament performance in making a decision on the Tewaaraton winner. In fact, it is an important consideration that deserves serious thought. With that said, however, NCAA Tournament performance should not be the strongest point of emphasis in picking a winner; activity in four games should not outweigh performances in a dozen or more games from February through May.
The exciting news is that both Pannell and Stanwick will be back next year, so expect this to become college lacrosse's marquee one-on-one rivalry.
Meanwhile, Syracuse legend Jim Brown was also on hand to pick up the inaugural Tewaaraton Legends Award. He was joined by some very special company in doing so.
"Because of his father I’m here tonight being honored by all of you," said Brown referring to his former coach, Roy Simmons Sr. "It’s a wonderful honor. I usually don’t care about trophies and things like that, but those of us who play lacrosse know that we do it for the love of the game, and simply for the love of the game. We’re all in the same fraternity. And for you to remember me and to bring me back with these young lions here, it’s truly an honor."
Northwestern's Shannon Smith. won the women’s Tewaaraton Award.