Q&A with CBS Sports Network's Evan Washburn

Former Delaware defenseman discussed, among other topics, No. 1 Maryland's convincing 16-7 thumping of Duke

March 04, 2013|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

Evan Washburn was NBC Sports Network’s sideline analyst for Maryland’s 12-10 upset of reigning national champion Loyola on Feb. 23. He also is the CBS Sports Network’s analyst and will provide color commentary for the March 31 meeting between Army and No. 6 Colgate on March 31. The former Delaware defenseman, who can be followed on Twitter via @Evan Washburn, offered his thoughts on No. 1 Maryland’s convincing victory over Duke, No. 5 Johns Hopkins’ concerns in an upset loss to No. 14 Princeton, and the individual matchup between 2012 Tewaaraton Award winner Peter Baum and 2011 finalist Rob Pannell.

What was the most impressive result from this past weekend?

The most impressive to me was [top-ranked] Maryland. Just watching the way they dismantled Duke [16-7], I know there have been struggles, and they obviously have a lot to figure out, but that’s still a talented team and a team that gets up for Maryland, an ACC opponent. Watching that game from start to finish, there was no point where you felt that Duke was in that game. When you sort of look at, you’re wondering, “Is Duke that bad or is Maryland that good?” I’m going with the point that Maryland is that good. I haven’t seen a team play that complete a brand of lacrosse in a while.

Is it too early to say that Maryland is the team to beat right now?

I think they’re the team to beat. I agree that it’s early, but I think Maryland is the best team in the nation hands down and then the rest, your guess is as good as mine. As we saw over the weekend, we saw five top 10 teams lose. So it’s pretty wide open. But to me, Maryland is a head above the rest.

Any of those upsets stand out to you?

The Hopkins loss [11-8 to No. 14 Princeton], two things kind of jumped out at me. I thought that [No. 5] Hopkins was more disappointing than I expected them to be in that type of game. I think offensively, they looked pretty disjointed and we saw that first midfield struggle. I think they really missed [junior midfielder] Rob Guida [who is dealing with an undisclosed injury]. That was the first time I had ever seen [senior defenseman] Tucker Durkin not look dominant. But that also goes hand-in-hand with Princeton really impressing me. Not only the Froccaro brothers [Jeff and Jake], but [junior midfielder Tom] Schreiber seems to be everything that they’ve been talking about over the past year. Virginia-Syracuse, that’s a game you can toss up every year because of the way they come into that matchup. It’s always end-to-end, and I think Syracuse gets up for that game perhaps more than any other. But in terms of top 10 losses, the Hopkins one jumps out at me. And [No. 12] Ohio State taking out [No. 9] Penn State was a big one because having seen both of those teams play in person, I thought that Penn State was much more equipped to be a top 10 team throughout the season as opposed to Ohio State, which has got some nice pieces, but I just didn’t see them taking out Penn State. Those are probably the two that stood out the most.

In No. 2 Cornell’s 19-3 thumping of No. 6 Colgate, Big Red redshirt senior attackman Rob Pannell finished with two goals and five assists, while Raiders senior attackman and 2012 Tewaaraton winner Peter Baum was shut out. Does this make Pannell the leading candidate as the best college player in the nation?

I think at this point, Rob Pannell is the leader in the clubhouse. I was excited for this game more than any other game over the course of the week. I thought that Rob Pannell played a really smart game. He didn’t go into that game thinking that it was Pannell vs. Baum, and he got a lot of guys involved. Cornell had 10 different scorers. That showed me a lot about his maturity. He’s a fifth-year guy. And then the other storyline that needs to be mentioned is [senior defenseman] Jason Noble who marked Baum for most of that game. He’s an All-American, but he’s not a defender that wows you with his size. But I was impressed with what he did against Baum. I do a lot of Patriot League games for CBS, and Peter Baum is as good as it gets in my mind, and to see him held to only three shots and one assist is pretty impressive.

Is the media guilty of excessively pointing out Loyola senior short-stick defensive midfielder Josh Hawkins’ absence?

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