Varsity - The Official Digital Magazine of Wisconsin Athletics

Varsity - May 15, 2014

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72 // VARSITY May 15, 2014 Putting it all together the goal for Eastern Sprints Badgers looking to get past growing pains T he Wisconsin men's rowing team, led by one of the Badgers' most entertaining head coaches in Chris Clark, is in a down cycle. Clark knows it, but also knows that things will change soon, he's just not quite sure when. He's just waiting for it to all come together. That next chance comes Sunday at the 2014 Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges Champion- ships, also known as the East- ern Sprints. UW's conference championships, and the quali- fier for the national champi- onships, takes place on Lake Quinsigamond in Worcester, Massachusetts. "This group could easily be in a grand final with 18 teams and six go to the grand finals, seven to 12 is petite, and then the third level final after that," Clark said. "But they're going to have to get over the idea of 'Let's see how many ways we can screw it up.' "We've done that a lot already. So hopefully they have a quiver of pulling out arrows of messing up. Hopefully they realize they're out of arrows. 'What the heck. Let's just go ahead and do well.'" Clark knows. He's coached his team to a national title and a couple of East- ern Sprints titles during his UW tenure, but he's also gone through a down time in the past. After winning just one of its last 10 dual races, he is still encouraged about what is to come. "That's what's frustrating about this group is, body-wise, they look great. It's like, wow, these guys could do it. The last time we got a bit of a dip we didn't have athletes like this. They just started out probably losing too much their first year. "Once you've learned to do that, then it's just you're running a laundry list in your head of the ways we're going to lose. You see it with any team. 'How are we go- ing to lose? Is it going to be a turnover? Is it going to be an interception? Are they just going to outscore us?' "It's the same thing in rowing. Like, 'Oh, boy, we're going to miss this row. Is the water going to be bad?' Eventu- ally you switch to: Let me count the ways that I can win." With two more weeks on the water since the Badgers were tested, Clark hopes it is time to start the count. SCHEDULE COMING UP May 18 at EARC Sprints May 30-June 1 at IRA Championships INSIDE MEN'S ROWING BY PAUL CAPOBIANCO @BADGERROWING

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