The Sharks are ready to hit the water! No, it’s not time for summer shark warnings on Long Island beaches, but rather the debut of LIU’s men’s and women’s rowing programs.
The Sharks will soon begin practicing for their inaugural season as an NCAA Division I rowing program.
“Adding opportunities in a sport for both men and women here on the Gold Coast of Long Island seemed like a natural fit for our athletic department.” said Athletic Director Bill Martinov.
Coaching both teams will be two-time World Rowing champion Jaclyn Smith. A member of the United States Para National Team from 2013-2020, she won a silver medal in 2016 and has medaled three times at the World Rowing championships.
However, Smith has her work cut out for her. The athletes on both teams will be first-time rowers.
“It’s a great opportunity for them to try something new.” Smith said. “You may have the athlete who says I was a decent baseball player but wasn’t college material. This gives them another chance to pick up a new sport.”
The Sharks begin practicing in April, but will not officially compete until the fall.
Featured photo: LIU rowing coach Jaclyn Smith. (Courtesy of US Rowing)