View Full Version : OT: Zags Get Invite to Rowing's Big Dance

Angelo Roncalli
05-27-2008, 05:40 PM
The Gonzaga University men's rowing program received two bids to the IRA National Championships as qualifiers were announced by the competition committee Sunday. Gonzaga will enter a Varsity 8+ and Freshman 8+ in this year's races set for June 5-7 at Cooper River in Camden, N.J. This is the first time in program history the Varsity 8+ has earned a bid in the IRA National Championships, and the second time overall the Freshman 8+ claimed a bid.

Men's rowing is not an NCAA sport--the IRA is the big dance. The Intercollegiate Rowing Association runs the IRA Championship Regatta, which is considered to be the United States collegiate national championship of rowing. Columbia, Cornell, Pennsylvania, Navy, and Syracuse are members of the association. Each year these five schools choose who to invite to the regatta and are responsible for its organization along with the ECAC. The IRA is the oldest college rowing championship in the United States.

05-27-2008, 06:01 PM
This is huge.

Only the elite typically get invited to this event. Usually Ivy Leaguers, UW, Cal, etc.

To have the men's 8+ invited is phenomenal.

It will be interesting to see if UW can repeat this year--they are supposed to be even faster than last year, and last I heard were undefeated this year.

I wonder if the fact that current Syracuse coach Dave Reischman formerly coached GU in the early 90s helped at all?

In any event, a phenomenal accomplishment, regardless of what happens back there.

Here's hoping GU takes out UW in the prelims even if doing so is the biggest upset in sports since the Miracle on Ice.

05-27-2008, 07:18 PM
To fellow Badger Dan Gehn and the guys, that is very impressive!