There was a time when you could ask anybody to just name you one single lacrosse team, and the majority of the answers would be Johns Hopkins. It didn't matter if you were a die-hard lacrosse fan, or you had only watched one game before in your life. Johns Hopkins was synonymous with the sport of lacrosse. I'd say the only other team that would come close would be Duke, just because the 2006 scandal (aka bold-faced lie) put them in the middle of pop culture.
But the hype around Hop has died over the past few years. They've been right around a .500 team at best since they last went to the Final Four in 2015. They started off the year 2-4 in 2020 before Covid shut the season down. They went a horrific 4-9 in 2021. And then last season they finished up their year at 7-9. The fact of the matter is that Johns Hopkins hasn't been a relevant team in college lacrosse since the majority of the current roster was in middle school.
Until this year.
A win against Maryland in The Rivalry means that Hopkins is officially back. But we're not talking Texas Football levels of being back. This isn't a bit. The Blue Jays are officially back. They went 4-1 in conference play to be regular season co-champs in the Big Ten with Penn State, finish the regular season at 11-4 and now they're ranked top 5 in the country heading into May. The haters are beside themselves.
I've always thought that college lacrosse is a better product when Hopkins is good. Because they're such a polarizing school. You either grew up loving Hop, or you despise every little thing about them and especially the band. Personally I've viewed Maryland for the past few years as the Empire of the college lacrosse world. Which means that we're about to Episode VI this bitch, because the Jedi have returned.
We talk all about Hopkins being back and recap everything else that went down during rivalry weekend in college lacrosse on the latest episode of The Crease Dive. You can watch/listen here.