More sports, more spirit


Graphic by Dominique Barquero

Most college students can attest that at the heart of a campus community is student athletics. Whether on the field, in the gym or cheering from the stands, it’s an opportunity to come together and show support for each other and the community. While a prideful student section is necessary in order to achieve success, most students’ personal athletic careers end after high school. For Nicholls State University’s mass communication student Andrew Liang, cheering is not enough. Not only does he want to play again, but he also wants the sport he loves to be represented at Nicholls. By him taking the initiative, the Nicholls Lacrosse Club is well on its way to becoming a reality.

Although only playing lacrosse his senior year at Jesuit High School in New Orleans, that was plenty of time for Liang to fall in love with the sport. Liang said that right now, lacrosse is really only found at private Catholic schools. He wants the sport at Nicholls not only so he can continue playing, but also to bring more attraction to Nicholls and for it to be better known in the community. Thibodaux already has a lot of Catholic schools that could possibly join a major league and play against New Orleans or Baton Rouge teams.

“I experienced a great team and a great atmosphere in high school. I want to bring that same feeling to Nicholls,” Liang said. “I want to expand it, grow the game and just watch people want to play it. It’s growing everywhere else, so why not here?”

Liang’s first step in making this idea a reality at Nicholls was filling out lots of paperwork. He needed a letter of intent, a constitution and many more papers in order to be recognized as a legitimate club on campus.

“Everything was online. Everything was labeled. It was super easy, and I was surprised to get as many guys as I did that wanted to sign up in the first place. I had at least 15 guys when I first started my paperwork. Right now, I’m up to 37 guys,” Liang said.

Recruiting for the most part was pretty simple, Liang said. He said he explained to people that if they like football, lacrosse is a sport that they could possibly have just as much fun doing. By showing videos and talking it up, he began to gain interest. Something that really helped the process was Welcome Back Day on campus.

Liang said his overall goal for the club is for it to be long-lasting. He said there was a club back in 2001, but it only lasted for a season or so.

“I want this to be different. I want this to actually be a sport and hopefully be a sport long enough for the Southland Conference teams to actually recognize lacrosse as a sport for them. My goal is to get this running enough to actually make it an NCAA sport at Nicholls,” Liang said.

By starting out as a club, teams have a chance to join a league to travel and play other schools. However, Liang said that in order to join the Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association, the cost is around $4,000. As a starting club team, Liang thinks it is better to not spend that much money just yet. By being a club outside the league, there is still the opportunity to travel and compete. This way, the club will have time to save money and build up funds so that they can join the league with an established base.

Lacrosse is an expensive sport and there is no getting around that, Liang said. As of now, dues for the club will be around $500, the same as a fraternity or sorority on campus. Through sponsors and fundraisers, Liang hopes to cut this down. Nicholls Athletics is helping out with sponsorship paperwork and Campus Recreations is working to provide field availability.

Ideally, Liang said he wants everything done this semester in order to play in the spring. Looking at it now, he said there is still a lot of work to do.

“The next step is finding a field, getting equipment and just making this club into a functioning team. We have the guys, we are building the funds and we are ready to get going,” Liang said.

Anyone interested can contact Liang at [email protected] or check out the Nicholls Lacrosse Instagram page that is soon to come. Liang said lacrosse is a growing sport, so hop on the train.