Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Lacrosse team recruits new coach

The Alabama women’s lacrosse team is starting its seventh year poised to make huge strides both this season and in the future.

Because lacrosse is not a NCAA-sanctioned sport at Alabama, the Crimson Tide plays in a league called the Southern Women’s Lacrosse League along with other schools from the southeast.

The Tide has established itself as a contender in the SWLL and hopes to improve from last year when the team starts its regular season in the spring. Much of the team’s recent success is due in part to new coach, Brian Stanley.

“He’s just done an amazing job,” president Madison Cook said. “He has really turned us around.”

Stanley is well versed in women’s lacrosse after previously coaching for high school teams in Georgia. Stanley brings more strategy and knowledge than past Alabama coaches.

The Tide has not had any trouble adjusting to its new coach. Stanley’s great attitude and passion for the game gave the team an instant bond, Cook said.

“From day one, the players have welcomed me with open arms and have been eager to listen and learn,” Stanley said. “Theses are great attributes and building blocks for a strong winning team.”

Cook said, “He’s really high intensity and he definitely tells us what his expectations are. I feel like if anything, it has helped so much more. Honestly, everyone is so happy to have him around.”

Aside from being the team’s coach, Stanley is also a full time air traffic controller at the Atlanta International Airport. Stanley makes the three-hour trip from Atlanta to Tuscaloosa every Tuesday and Thursday to coach the Tide.

“My driving force is the passion and dedication, drive and determination of these ladies,” Stanley said. “I feel it is a great privilege and honor to be invited by the University of Alabama women’s lacrosse team. I am honored to give my time and knowledge to help this program succeed.”

Stanley has always been an Alabama fan. As a boy growing up in Birmingham, Stanley said he dreamt of playing under coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. To be able to coach at Alabama is something that Stanley said he enjoys and is grateful for.

“Luckily, two of my biggest passions outside my wife and family were able to be combined: the University of Alabama and coaching,” Stanley said. “For me, being a part of  the UA lacrosse program has been a dream come true.”

Stanley said he sees constant improvement and that the team should be able to make big strides this season.

“I see the girls being more competitive in each game they play,” Stanley said. “With constant improvement, I see the girls being a force to be reckoned with in the SWLL tournament at the end of the year.”

The Tide also hopes to improve the program in the future by eventually transitioning from being a club team to a NCAA sanctioned team. The team is in its seventh year, making it eligible to become an NCAA team.

“We don’t want to stay a club,” Cook said. “We absolutely want to go all the way, eventually recruit and have sponsorships.”

With women’s lacrosse becoming one of the fastest growing sports in the nation, Stanley said he hopes to see the Tide on the next level in the near future.

“I would love to see the University of Alabama take the lead among the SEC division one schools and be a pioneer,” Stanley said. “I really feel that once a school like Alabama makes the commitment, the other SEC DI schools will shortly follow.”

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