Full Circle

Professional lacrosse player Belisle '07 using concepts learned at ILR
Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Leading the Big Red to the NCAA Division 1 Lacrosse Final Four was not the end of Mitch Belisle’s distinguished lacrosse career.

Belisle plays professional lacrosse for the Boston Cannons of Major League Lacrosse and the Georgia Swarm in the National Lacrosse League.

The 2007 ILR graduate also has a full-time job as the vice president of marketing for Trilogy Lacrosse. Trilogy is a New York City-based company that promotes lacrosse education through camps and clinics.

Belisle described his favorite part of working at Trilogy as witnessing a full circle.

“My favorite thing is to have kids have the same opportunities that I have had through an amazing sport. It is a relatively small community, but it is growing so fast,” Belisle said.

“Seeing the full life circle of a player going from a little guy, to a knowledgeable player, to getting to play in college and coming back to coach the next generation is really rewarding.”

Belisle’s education at ILR has also made a full circle as he still uses ILR-learned concepts in his role at Trilogy.

“We are still growing, and what I learned at ILR is becoming more and more useful,” Belisle said. “We just hired two new analysts that joined our team two months ago, and I had two interns this summer, so I am trying to use concepts from labor economics and organizational behavior.”

Belisle sees his busy schedule being not that different from his time at Cornell.

“I think Cornell did a great job preparing me by having the rigors of a full-time class schedule and being a full-time varsity athlete, which is arguably even more demanding than being a professional lacrosse athlete because you have team practices, film sessions and workouts,” Belisle said.

“You really have to find a way to balance your work and lacrosse while trying to get in some social things. So, that really prepared me well for the lifestyle that I am living now.”

Being a Big Red athlete, Belisle’s schedule often overlapped with classes that made for some interesting makeup arrangements.

“One time, we took a test on the bus and one of the coaches proctored the exam with the blessing of the professor,” he said. “I was also always running around and sprinting to class and back to the locker room then back to class, so there were times that I would set up a little apartment in the locker room.”

At nine seasons, Belisle is tied with former Big Red defender Ryan McClay A&S '03 for having the longest Major League Lacrosse career by a Cornellian.

Belisle will have a chance to break the record next season and says his daily two-hour workout routine helps make that possible.

“I have been really dedicated to staying in shape and taking workouts seriously and pushing myself to make sure that I am the best shape that I can be,” Belisle said. “Also, a little bit of it is luck to not have any serious hardships or injuries. I also have a great support group with my wife and my family.”

Without question, his favorite moment at Cornell was the lacrosse team’s 2007 undefeated season. They played in the Final Four in front of 52,000, the largest crowd in its history.

“Getting to lead the team in front of that crowd and atmosphere was a dream that I always had since stepping on campus. To have it come true senior year was something pretty special,” Belisle said. “In fact, we seniors missed graduation because of that, so I didn’t get to walk across the stage because we had that game."

Belisle maintains a relationship with the Cornell lacrosse program and made a visit before getting married last October.

“Before the wedding, I went to go back and work out with the lacrosse team at their 7 a.m. workout,” Belisle said. “That was pretty fun and I was still beating up on the young guys, since I am the old guy now.”