If you run a first-class, top-notch women’s soccer team
at a Division I university, isn’t your goal at the beginning
of the year to win the NCAA national championship?
After all, that means your team is the best in the land.
And therefore, all of your coaching decisions should be
dictated by trying to reach that goal.
But does that mean that you should leave 7 of your starters
home on campus when the rest of your team competes
in the Atlantic Coast Conference playoffs?
That was the dilemma that Coach Krikorian from Florida
State had to confront. He consulted with his Athletic Director
at FSU and they both decided this would be a good move.
After all, those seven girls had a variety of bumps and
bruises, and besides, they could catch up on their
But the ACC viewed all of this much differently. To them,
sending a team without key starters showed a real lack
of respect and integrity for the ACC and the rest of the
teams in the tournament. Florida State was fined $25,000
and also denied $15,000 for travel costs for their actions.
What’s curious about all of this is that numerous college
soccer coaches came to the defense of Florida State, which
lost its opening round match in the ACC to Wake Forest, but
has now advanced to the fourth round of the NCAA tourney.
On my show this past week, lots of callers defended
the FSU coach, but a good number of them also chided
the coach for not bringing the entire team to the ACC
games. That’s what I would have done: bring the entire
squad, and then play your injured starters for 15 minutes
or so. Then, start subbing your reserves.
In that way, nobody can accuse the coach of dividing his
team into two factions, plus everybody plays in the ACC.
As noted, I know it’s about reaching the pinnacle in the
NCAAs, but if you’re going to compete in a conference,
you have to abide by the conference’s rules and