In the last few years, parity in Division I has trickled down to recruiting.
The established programs from conferences like the ACC, Big 10 and Ivy League are still gobbling up much of the talent, however there’s plenty of intrigue from high school stalwarts to go down a different path.
Canadian attackman Ryan Lanchbury (Avon Old Farms, Conn.) clearly saw enough in reigning conference champion and second-year Division I program Richmond to pull the trigger, turning down schools like Princeton, Cornell and Michigan in the process.
“It’s not inconceivable that Richmond’s able to get great guys – everybody is very good now and every school is getting great recruits,” says 3d Lacrosse CEO and former Denver head coach Jamie Munro, who has watched Lanchbury extensively both in field and box. “They turned heads in year one so their level of recruiting is going to improve each year. As a coach, Dan Chemotti certainly knows what he’s doing and Richmond is an excellent school with plenty to sell.”
In Lanchbury, Richmond gets a right-handed scorer who is deadly from mid-range and is fantastically cerebral and sneaky without the ball in his stick. He’s an underrated feeder who probably won’t be a go-to carrier at the next level but is someone who can hurt you in many different ways.
“Ryan’s a guy who you can throw the ball to and it’ll be in the back of the net before you know it,” Munro says of the Burlington (Ont.) Chiefs box standout. “He’s absolutely exceptional shooting the ball, it’s not a cannon with out of sight heat but an unbelievable release with amazing accuracy… definitely a kid who is capable of being at least a 40-point scorer every year in college and will rack up the goals.”
Developing skills and gaining experience in the Founder’s League has been huge for Ontario products in the last decade, so Lanchbury will take advantage of the spring competition to take his game even higher. At the University of Richmond, he’ll team up with a handful of Canucks on UR’s roster, including one of his best friends in Junior ‘A’ Chiefs teammate Nate Emery, a midfield commit out of the Hill Academy.
Recruiting Rundown spoke with the 2017 graduate and 3d New England scorer on the phone last week to hear more about his decision to become a Spider:
What was it about Richmond that made you decide on the Spiders?
There were a lot of things that played into my decision. Getting a great degree is really important to me and all three of the other schools I seriously considered offered strong academics but Richmond felt like the best fit. Overall, I really liked my interaction with Coach [Dan] Chemotti as well as the rest of the staff and players. They’re a really good team now but as the years go on they’ll get better and will be a place I can walk right in as a freshman and hopefully become an impact player. The campus was unbelievable and I just really felt at home there.
How was the recruiting process for you and how does it feel to be done?
It’s definitely nice to be done the process, though it was enjoyable throughout. I started it all last fall and wanted to make sure I made the right decision so I visited about 6 or 7 schools to look for the right fit. I did feel eager to pull the trigger earlier this summer but wanted to make sure that I was exploring all of those options properly.
What do you feel that you bring to the table when you’re on the field?
My game is a combination of skill and IQ – I like to read my defenders and try and pick apart the defense. I’m not necessarily the best dodger but I like to work off-ball mostly. The box game is integrated with my field game and that’s why I can finish well and use my vision and IQ in tight spaces.
Knowing that you guys graduated important players like Connor Kelly (Maryland), Nolan Callahan (Syracuse) and a few others, what’s the outlook for AOF in 2015?
I think we’re really going to be strong on the back end since we bring back our core defenders, we just need to find a starting goalie. Offensively, we lost a huge contributor in Connor so hopefully we can find some offense and I can be a part of that to try and become Founder’s League champions.
Having guys back like Tyson Bomberry [a Syracuse commit], Theo Dol and Mikey Herring [both Virginia verbals] is essential to our success since they were a big part of our team last year and will be leaders this spring. We brought in postgrads Tucker Gillman and McKinley Merrill [Georgetown commits] as well as Canadian middie Brent Noseworthy, so they’ll all take us to the next level.
Who would you like to thank for helping you along the way towards your commitment?
I’d love to thank primarily my Avon Old Farms coaches, especially Dr. Skip Flanagan and Keith Lee, they really helped me in the process and called me and aided me through everything. At 3d, Jamie Munro and David Jenkins were a big part and a huge help to me, as well as 3d Canada coach Sean Allen, who coached me in box for Team Ontario. I’m very thankful for all of those coaches as well as my parents for being awesome.