Lyle Shirley was an amazing lacrosse player who set multiple records at Lake Forest College and was voted the most valuable player of the team.
After college he played for the Detroit Turbos of the Major Indoor Lacrosse League from 1991 until the franchise's end in 1994. This means he was on the Detroit team who won the 1991 MILL championship.
I had the ability to interview Lyle who answered all my questions and was extremely cooperative.
1. After your amazing career at Lake Forest, how did you get involved with the Turbos? Were you drafted?
I was playing for the Chicago Lacrosse Club with three [then] current members of the Turbos, Tom Aldrich, Adam Mueller, and Dan Pratt, when we played a club team from Michigan. The assistant GM saw me play, and asked me to come try out for the next season.
2. What was the 1991 Major Indoor Lacrosse League Championship like? Any great memories?
The 1991 Championship was a great experience. The best experience for me was the level of talent on the team, and being able to learn from them. I remember one of my first practices, and Ronnie Martinello was telling me to be ready for the ball at all times, especially when the Gait brothers were on the floor. During a scrimmage, I was breaking up the left side of the floor not yet looking back, when the next thing I know Gary nailed me in the back of the helmet with a 10 yard behind the back pass on a frozen rope. I learned my lesson.
3. What happened at the '94 brawl between Detroit and Philadelphia? Did you get into any of the action?
I got sick 2 days before the Wings game in '94, and didn't make the trip to Philly. I heard about the train wreck when the team got back. I played with Steve Govett last year in Vail, and he gave me his side of the story. Looking back on it, I guess we can have a laugh about it now.
4. You must have really liked the Turbos as you played with them until they folded, would you have ever left by choice?
I loved playing with the Turbos. I loved playing in Joe Louis Arena, and the fans were awesome. I never would have left Detroit by choice. It would be great to see a team playing there again!
5. Do you have any funny memories with the team you want to share?
I do have one funny memory about a teammate who shall remain nameless. Back in the day, our uniform consisted of purple and grey bike shorts. This particular player used to use his version of the "Rock Sock" (look up the Spinal Tap movie), to enhance his "look". We would laugh waiting for his extra "equipment" to fall out...
I would just like to thank Lyle Shirley again for his cooperation & involvement. If you have any MILL memories don't be afriad to share them in the comments or on our forum.