Former Vancouver Ravens assistant coach Rod Jensen has been named head coach of the National Lacrosse League's new Colorado franchise, it was announced today by Steve Govett, the club's president and general manager.
Jensen joins the soon-to-be-named team for its inaugural season in Denver after an extensive career as both a player and coach. His coaching experience includes lacrosse, basketball and football at various levels in the Vancouver area of British Columbia, Canada - where he still teaches high school."Rod brings enormous talent and experience with him," said Govett. "Everyone associated with the club is confident that Rod's respect among players, coaches and staff makes him the right man to coach this team as it begins play in its new home."
"Coaching in Colorado is the chance of a lifetime," Jensen said. "The enthusiasm of the fans and the Kroenke organization will be rewarded - this is going to be a terrific team to watch." Jensen's nine-year stint in the Western Lacrosse Association saw him ranked as a Top 10 scorer for four seasons. An All-Star in 1990, Jensen recorded a total of 190 goals and 270 assists (460 points) in his career.Jensen will have a talented and diverse coaching staff assisting him in his first year as head coach. Ward Sanderson will serve as Assistant Coach and Defensive Coordinator. Assistant Coach and Offensive Coordinator will be Jamie Batley. Both men are former players and coaches with an extensive history in the game of lacrosse.The Director of Player Personnel is local lacrosse great George McGeeney, who will enter the Lacrosse Hall of Fame on October 12, 2002. The Director of Player Development is recently retired lacrosse legend and future Hall of Fame member, Paul Gait - the winner of last season's National Lacrosse League Most Valuable Player award.
Govett also announced that open tryouts for the team will be held Sunday October 13 at Pepsi Center. Registration information forms are available at www.ColoradoLax.com or by calling 303.405.1340. "There are a number of schools with great lacrosse traditions in this area," said Govett. "In addition to a number of former pro players in the region, we expect to see some great former college players try out."
The 2002-03 schedule will be released in September with play set to begin at the end of December. The Colorado Indoor Lacrosse team moved from Washington, DC after the 2002 season where it was based for the last two years as the Washington Power. The eight-game home schedule will be played at Pepsi Center on weekends between December and April. Season ticket packages range from $80 - $240 and can be purchased now at 303.405.1101 or at www.ColoradoLax.com.
The National Lacrosse League is made of 12 franchise teams in three divisions: the Northern, Eastern and Central divisions. The Colorado Indoor Lacrosse team is currently part of the Eastern division and is joined by New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia. The playoff format includes six teams, following a 16-game regular season.
Colorado Indoor Lacrosse is owned by Kroenke Sports Enterprises and joins the NHL Colorado Avalanche, NBA Denver Nuggets, partial ownership of the AFL Colorado Crush, and the Pepsi Center arena in Kroenke Sports' team-related holdings.