That's So EMO: Ryan Boyle's 3 Questions for Every Man-Up Situation

PHOTO BY NICK IERADI

Hall of Fame player and Trilogy Lacrosse co-founder Ryan Boyle presents on extra-man offense at the USA Lacrosse Convention in Baltimore.


Ryan Boyle is the Troy Aikman of lacrosse — a Hall of Fame player whose game knowledge, timely delivery and ability to distill complex concepts for ordinary viewers has led to a highly successful second life in the broadcast booth.

Boyle, a Premier Lacrosse League analyst and the co-founder of Trilogy Lacrosse, has become a mainstay at the USA Lacrosse Convention. In January, he staged a live field demonstration on the fundamentals of extra-man offense.

A coach or player on the field should ask himself these three questions, the answers to which should dictate the movement:

1. What are the adjacent outlets?

2. What are the skip lanes?

3. What does the crease play look like?

SETS VS. PLAYS

“When we talk about man-up, we’re really talking about two different things: sets and plays,” Boyle said. “What set — what formation — am I getting into? And then what are the appropriate reads out of that? Versus a play, which is very much a scripted, choreographed set of picks, screens, cuts, passes, etc. What I try to preach is understanding and mastering one set, because if anything breaks down, you have that one set you can lean on. And if you can execute one set, then you can just reverse engineer, start in any formation and end up in that.”







LAXCON SIGHTS AND SOUNDS

You need not look far for inspiration at the USA Lacrosse Convention.

THEY’RE WATCHING YOU

“Players are paying attention to the coaches and how the coaches treat one another. It reflects with the players.” — Patrick Timothee, former Coker men’s lacrosse captain and current USA Lacrosse Sankofa clinician in “Power of Inclusive Leadership”

MIND YOUR FEET, CALM YOUR MIND

“If they’re attacking—if there’s isolation—whatever foot is closest to the pipe I’m going to keep nice and tight. They’re going to finish from the inside on that middle hash. So I’m going to drop my [other] foot back and slide into place so I can be ready to finish and explode high. In Athletes Unlimited, there’s a lot going on. Sometimes it feels super chaotic. You’re like ‘Where’s my [defense]?’ You’re the only one that’s left out here, so you want to make it nice and easy, settle your mind so you can make that beautiful save in the end.” —  Mira Shane in the Athletes Unlimited demo field session

DECEPTION IS EVERYTHING

“You can be deceptive with your stick, your body, your eyes. In everything that we do, whether it’s dodging or shooting, deception is such an important part of it.” — Rob Pannell in his Attack Academy session with Grant Ament

YOU ARE YOUR BRAND

“Build your thing. You don’t have to wait for your opportunity to be on ESPN. Share what matters to you.” — Tari Kandemiri in “Navigating Lacrosse Media”

ALWAYS BE AUTHENTIC

“There can be a ton of pressure on social media. Just remembering, ‘Is this authentic to me? Do I really, truly believe this? Is this something when I look back three years from now, I’ll say I’m proud of this?’” — Kylie Ohlmiller on building your social media presence

CALM AMIDST THE STORM

“You’re the grey factor. You’re the calming presence. You have to be neutral. Nobody’s fouling you, so don’t throw fuel to the fire. This is an angry profession. You’ve to keep your cool. You’ve got to stay neutral. Have your bag of lines that you can revert to. If you get up to a coach, you start stuttering, it sounds bad. Answer the question and move on.” – Official Josh Blaisdell on his approach to dealing with angry coaches and players

BOLDLY BROWN

“Being the only brown face on a team is a reality right now. We want to make sure that those brown faces are doing it boldly and are being supporting and are in a world that fully accepts their whole selves.” — IWLCA Racial Equity Task Force head Jessy Morgan on Lax Sports Network at LaxCon

THE WHOLE STICK AND NOTHING BUT THE STICK

“I look for the whole package. You do not minimize any part of [the stick].If you have a good stick and lousy handle, what do you got? If you have a great handle and lousy pocket, what do you got? When you’re practicing, you do everything you can to be a good lacrosse player. You don’t minimize anything. You don’t minimize any part of the game or the stick.” — Legendary Onondaga stick maker Alfie Jacques on Lax Sports Network

NEW HEIGHTS

“This will be the event that will get the sport to new heights, especially for World Lacrosse and international lacrosse.” — World Lacrosse CEO Jim Scherr on the 2023 men’s world championship in San Diego.

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