U. of Tampa Names Whipple First Head Coach

TAMPA, Fla. - University of Tampa athletic director Larry Marfise has announced that Rory Whipple will become the school's first head men's lacrosse coach.

The all-time winningest coach in NCAA Division II was previously the head coach at Florida Southern College. This marks the fourth program that Whipple has started as he looks to build the Spartans into a national contender.

"We are very fortunate to have a coach with Rory's ability and coaching experience," says athletic director Larry Marfise. "His record speaks for itself and I expect him to be an outstanding fit at The University of Tampa."

Whipple spent two seasons at Florida Southern, leading the Mocs to an 11-10 victory over No. 10 Saint Leo in the program's second year of existence. In the Deep South Tournament, the Moccasins won a first-round game over Rollins before dropping a 10-9 decision to Saint Leo in the semifinals in 2010.

In the Moccasins' first season of NCAA competition in 2008-09, Whipple guided his non-scholarship program to a 4-6 record and was just one win away from making the Deep South Conference Tournament.

Whipple officially began his duties at Florida Southern on June 1, 2008, after coaching the previous year at Vero Beach High School. He has an overall collegiate coaching record of 228-174 in 28 seasons as a head coach.

Whipple was the men's lacrosse coach at Bryant University (R.I.) for seven seasons, starting the program in 2000 and producing a 75-39 record during that time. A total of 15 Bryant players earned All-America honors during his tenure. After posting a 7-7 record in its inaugural season, Bryant went on to enjoy six straight winning seasons under Whipple's direction. His teams were nationally ranked in Division II each of his seven seasons there.

Before going to Bryant, Whipple was the men's lacrosse coach at Hartwick College (N.Y.) for 12 years. He took over that program in 1987 and became the most successful coach in the program's history, producing 10 straight winning seasons and an overall record of 114-65. He took Hartwick to its first NCAA tournament berth in 1995.

Prior to taking over the Hartwick program, Whipple coached the Clarkson University (N.Y.) men's lacrosse team for seven seasons, setting the school record for wins with a 10-5 record in 1986. At the same time, he also was the head wrestling coach at Clarkson.

Whipple also has had extensive international lacrosse experience. In 1993 he traveled to Japan with a group from the U.S. to work development programs in that country. In 1994 he was named head coach of the Iroquois National Team and led the squad to a fifth-place finish at the World Lacrosse Championships in England. He also coached the team at the Commonwealth Games in Vancouver that year.

He returned to Japan in 1996 as a coach of the Iroquois National Team for the Under-19 World Championships. In 1999 he coached the Under-19 Iroquois Junior National Team to a bronze medal in the World Games in Australia. In 2002, he was an assistant coach for the Iroquois National Team that placed fourth in the 2002 World Championship in Australia.

A 1976 graduate of Cortland State (N.Y.), Whipple played on the Cortland State 1975 NCAA Division II championship lacrosse team. He also earned All-America honors in wrestling at Cortland State and twice was named the team's most valuable wrestler.

He and his wife, Judy, have one daughter, Kristie, and two sons, Max and Conor.

2011-02-18



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