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How did “How I Met Your Mother” play a role in Thomas Clejan’s college choice?
Well, actually, there were plenty of more important factors — such as a perfect mix of strong athletics and academics — that were the deciding factors in the Manhasset College senior’s decision to commit to Wesleyan University, a decision first reported by Joe Lombardi on LaxLessons.com’s Lacrosse Insider premium coverage section.
But before we get into that, we should note the three main characters — Ted, Marshall and Lily — in “How I Met Your Mother” are characters who first met at Wesleyan.
Thomas Clejan is very aware of that, as you will see.
And the defenseman/longstick midfielder hopes to enjoy plenty of prime-time worthy performances when he joins the Cardinal.s
The 6-foot-1, 175-pound Clejan is an athletic and ambidextrous player who excels in the transition game and with his physicality at the goal-line extended. He also has a high lacrosse IQ.
Now, here’s a Q&A with Thomas on his commitment.
What were the main factors in your decision?
The three main factors were education, networking and competitive lacrosse.
Wesleyan is a great Liberal Arts institution which also can provide a more intimate connection between student and professor.
(Wesleyan Head) Coach (John) Raba, being so dedicated to the program and having coached for over 20 years, has developed many great connections with alumni that will prove to be useful networking.
As a lacrosse team, I look forward to playing in the highly competitive NESCAC and Little Three. (and of course, the fact that Ted, Marshall and Lily of “How I Met Your Mother” made the school that much more appealing to me).
What other schools were you considering and what schools did you visit?
I was considering Holy Cross, St. John’s, Hamilton and Franklin & Marshall.
I also visited Amherst, UPenn, Bowdoin, Lafayette, and Washington & Lee.
What are your strengths as a player and how would you describe your style of play?
I think my strengths are my transition game, physicality at GLE and lacrosse IQ. I think my style of play is very fast-paced considering I love getting the ball off the ground and pushing transition when possible.
What area of your game do you need to work on?
Off-ball positioning and awareness could use some work. Also there’s always room for improvement with footwork.
How did you get introduced to lacrosse and what other sports have you played?
My uncle (former Lakeland HS, NY standout) Stephen Kisslinger was an All-American at Towson and Adelphi and I had watched a lot of his box lacrosse games as an infant.
Being from Manhasset, I had been exposed to the lacrosse culture since birth and I starting playing in 5th grade. I’ve always loved soccer, skiing, basketball and tennis, and I still play soccer at the varsity level.
What travel team do you play on what showcase events did you participate in?
Team 32. I’ve attended Good to Great, Nat 175 Best of the Best, Elite 100, and a few more.
Any final thoughts and people you want to thank for helping you reach this point?
I want to first thank my uncle for teaching me plenty of his tricks and giving me insight. The entirety of my family has been outrageously supportive of my lacrosse endeavors and I couldn’t be more thankful.
I also want to thank my varsity coaches. Coach Christy, thanks for being an amazing coach and having faith in me. And last but certainly not least, I’d like to thank Coach Cherry. He’s helped me out with the recruiting process since sophomore year and been my club coach since seventh grade. This year on varsity, he pushed me and motivated me to really put in the effort.
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