The East vs. West discussion is endless when it comes to water polo in the big ol’ USA. From Brown University in Rhode Island to UC San Diego in the far southern reaches of California is nearly a 3,000 miles. Traveling that far via interstate highway is impossible for competing varsity teams. Air travel is the way to go at those distances. But the truth about what some perceive as the glamor of varsity-level travel is that it’s often hugely draining and disruptive.
Brown’s Daily Herald reveals just a little of what Bruno’s water polo athletes face in pursuit of varied competition throughout the US.
But for athletes at Brown, traveling is a part of every team’s week-to-week schedule. Once the season gets underway, the reality of long bus rides, inconvenient plane trips and conflicting schedules rears its ugly head…
The men’s water polo team also regularly takes long in-season trips. Every year in late October, the Bears spend about four-and-a-half days in California for the Rodeo Santa Clara Bronco Invitational. Brown takes on several Golden State-based teams during the tournament — as does Harvard, which also makes the long flight out.
“It’s definitely difficult,” said Henry Fox ’15, who was a member of last year’s team that earned a bid to — and another trip to California for — the NCAA tournament. “On those trips you miss one-and-a-half days of classes and usually take red-eye Sunday flights.”