April 20, 2012
East Lansing, Mich. - The Michigan State rowing team, after a brief week of training back in East Lansing, heads to the west coast for a pair of dual races with Pac-12 powers Stanford and Southern California. The Spartans, who competed against five crews last week - including the top-ranked host, Virginia - at the UVA Invitational, had just a four-day stopover at home before heading west to complete their 10-day, two-coast competition schedule.
"We, by design, sign up for these races against top-10 crews that are annual invitees to the NCAA Championship regatta," said head coach Matt Weise. "You have to race fast crews during the course of the year to see where you stack up, where those holes are. The regular season we spend measuring ourselves and trying to get faster, with the plan being to peak for our Big Ten and NCAA Championship events.
Since a large part of the selection to the NCAA field entails comparing results against out-of-region competition, Weise has crafted a schedule in 2012 that has the Spartans lining up with some of the nation's top competition. MSU checks in at No. 14 in this week's national poll, while Southern Cal (No. 5) and Stanford (No. 11) are on the docket for this week. MSU has previously rowed against No. 1 Virginia, No. 3 Michigan, No. 8 Ohio State, and teams receiving votes Minnesota, Penn, Northeastern, and Indiana. This is the final weekend of regular-season competition for the Spartans before the Big Ten Championships on May 13.
This weekend, the Spartans will line up with Stanford in a late-morning session, then against the Women of Troy in the afternoon session.
Second Varsity Eight