John Danowski New Duke Coach

John Danowski New Duke Coach

John Danowski New Duke Coach

John Danowski New Duke Coach

DURHAM, N.C. - John Danowski, a national lacrosse coach of the year winner whose teams won eight conference championships at Hofstra University, will become the new head coach of the Duke University men's lacrosse team, Director of Athletics Joe Alleva announced Friday.

Danowski will take over the program from Kevin Cassesse, who was named interim head coach following the resignation of former head coach Mike Pressler. Danowski's appointment was unanimously recommended by an eight-member committee following a national search. Alleva made his decision Thursday after a meeting he and Danowski held with Duke President Richard H. Brodhead.

Entering his 25th season as a collegiate head coach, Danowski was honored in 1993 as the NCAA Division I National Coach of the Year. He spent the last 21 seasons at Hofstra, compiling a record of 192-123 (.609) with eight conference championships and NCAA Tournament bids. With an overall record of 219-139 (.612), he is among just eight active head coaches in NCAA Division I men's lacrosse to reach the 200-win plateau. His Hofstra teams produced 34 All-America selections. Under Danowski, student-athletes who completed their eligibility graduated at a rate better than 90 percent.

"John Danowski is a great coach, on and off the field," Alleva said. "He's well known in the lacrosse community not only for his championships but also for his character and integrity, and for bringing out the best in his players. He knows Duke's lacrosse program will be facing special scrutiny and is committed to working with the players and others to ensure the team is a source of pride for the entire Duke community."

Brodhead said that after the committee had identified Danowski as its top candidate, "I had a long talk with him, and I too felt the force of his special qualities.

"Coach Danowski has compiled impressive winning records, but for him coaching is about far more than results on the field," Brodhead said. "Himself a former teacher, he sees his role as developing the human potential of his players in its fullest sense: in academics, in athletics and in the domain of character. He's a great choice for our program at this time. I look for him to continue everything that's best in the Duke lacrosse tradition and to build the new strengths we're committed to achieving."

As the father of a rising senior, Matt, on the Duke team, Danowski already knows many of the players and their families. "I know how difficult these past few months have been for everyone associated with the team, as well as for the university and the Durham community," he said. "As we look to the future, we know that our performance will not be measured solely in terms of wins and losses. Yes, we will compete for championships, and I hope to win one next year. But I also will insist that our players act consistently in a manner that brings honor to themselves and the university."

The 2006 season was Danowski's most successful at Hofstra as the Pride matched an NCAA single-season record with 17 victories and two defeats. Hofstra won the Colonial Athletic Association championship, finished the regular season ranked number two in the national poll and advanced to the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals.

Prior to joining Hofstra, Danowski spent three seasons as the head coach at Long Island University-C.W. Post, compiling a 27-16 (.628) record from 1983 through 1985. He received his start in coaching in 1982 as an assistant coach at LIU-C.W. Post.

Named conference coach of the year four times, Danowski was inducted into the Long Island Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2001. He is a three-time winner of the Joseph "Frenchy" Julien Sportsmanship Award presented by the Metropolitan New York Officials Association and received the James Adams Sportsmanship Award from the National Intercollegiate Lacrosse Officials Association in 1994.

A 1976 graduate of Rutgers University, where he earned a bachelor of science degree in environmental science and education, Danowski earned a master's degree in counseling and college student development from LIU-C.W. Post in 1978. He played lacrosse for four years at Rutgers and helped lead the team to two NCAA tournament appearances. He continues to hold several Rutgers records in the sport.

Danowski and his wife Patricia also have a daughter Kate, who played lacrosse at Quinnipiac University before graduating in 2005.

Danowski's appointment follows several months of scrutiny of Duke lacrosse. Duke's team was ranked as high as number two in the nation this past spring before Brodhead suspended its season on March 28 following a Durham woman's allegations that she was raped at an off-campus party attended by many team members. Three team members, who maintain their innocence, have been indicted and face a criminal trial; all other team members have been exonerated.

A faculty committee that subsequently studied the team's record found the players to be "academically and athletically responsible students" who were too often "socially irresponsible," especially when under the influence of alcohol. A special Duke website contains the committee report and other information about the team and the related media scrutiny:

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    by (#38957) on 7/21/06 @12:24PM
I think he will bring a lot to Duke, and hopefully we can see them in the semis or finals next season. And looks like his son will have to play under him for a year after all.
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    by (#97931) on 7/21/06 @12:59PM
Finally they have a good foundation, but they lost so many recruits. And i dont know if they'll be able to reach the finals, semifinals yes, and it kills me to say that about my favorite team.

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re: yeah
    by (#749) on 7/21/06 @3:10PM
what are you talking about?
they lost 2 recruits
and Pressler got farther with Duke then Danowski ever got with Hofstra.
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(no subject)
    by (#97931) on 7/21/06 @3:16PM
they lost more than two recruits, and im sure theyll lose future recruits over this incident. And Pressler got farther because he had better players to work with, no offense to Hofstra but Duke has better players.
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They Only Lost 2
    by (#139811) on 7/21/06 @7:46PM
Dude.. they only lost 2 recruits...check your facts next time
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Duke Recruit losses
    by (#44440) on 7/22/06 @10:58AM
As much as it kills me to say this as a Duke Fan, Duke lost a lot more than just two recruits.

Last I checked they lost the following:

Tom Dodge: Penn
Craig Dowd: Georgetown
Scott Kocis: Georgetown
Ken Klausen: UVA

All of those guys are supposed to be top-level recruits.

Flyerlax, before you tell somebody to get their facts straight, be sure you've got your information correct.
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check those facts
    by (#12659) on 7/22/06 @9:47AM
hofstra keeps beating duke
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    by (#123583) on 7/21/06 @3:45PM
duke still has the leading points scorer in high school. maxquinzani from Duxbury, Mass
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well that's it, hofstra had a good run...
    by (#105934) on 7/21/06 @3:23PM
without danowski they are going to be disorganized and lacking in leadership because of all of the senior class loss. Unless they get a great coach to replace Danowski, they will be lucky to be top 10. good move by duke, he is a great coach to rebuild their program.
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Join D3
    by (#10445) on 7/21/06 @6:30PM
Heck, they can always join D3 :)
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Alright, you just crossed the line...
    by (#38957) on 7/21/06 @6:39PM
Hofstra's lacrosse program has always been known to be a blue-collar team, so for you to say something like that just because their head coach is leaving is obsurd. You'd probably be lucky to make a club team somewhere.
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That's it?
    by (#139903) on 7/21/06 @7:21PM
Listen, coming off of a great year, there will be plenty of quality coaches that want the job. For example, some of the other guys that interviewed at Duke. They will be fine, maybe not as good as last year, but isn't that what happens at the Div. 1 level? Teams lose players, coaches, etc. and other teams reload. I played for Dino and he will do a great job at Duke. Watch for Rick Sowell or Bill Wilson to take over at Hofstra. (you hear things through the alumni grapevine) Both excellent choices. A for "that's it", go out in your back yard and shoot on cage and maybe one day you can be good enough to lead them back.
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    by (#3651) on 7/21/06 @7:42PM
The move makes sense for him & family, so off he goes. However, I'd be curious to hear from current players to see whether they feel betrayed, in light of his "relentless pursuit of excellence" campaign. I'm sorry to see him leave because he did a good job. But lax at Hofstra will continue. Talented up-n-coming coaches will be standing in line for the Hofstra job. Sure, for now life skips a beat but the pulse continues. Move over Carolina, a new rivalry is born. I look forward to the next Hofstra U. v. Puke U. lax game so that Dino can get a dose of his own medicine. So let me be the first F.L.I.D. in the Danowski era to say DUKE SUCKS, GO HOFSTRA!!!
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Pressler's Career
    by (#129209) on 7/22/06 @2:20AM
I hope Pressler gets picked up somewhere good. He's such an incredible coach. He did really unbelievable things for the Duke program and got shafted just as it was all starting to pay off. I wish Maryland would dump that dipsh!t Cottle for him. Or maybe he could turn around Loyola's program. OR take the open position at Hofstra. Oh the irony.
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    by (#135016) on 7/22/06 @3:03AM
So does anyone know if HS boys has been posted yet, and if so where?
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Would Pressler Ever Take The UNC Job?
    by (#136419) on 7/22/06 @7:16PM
I agree that Pressler is an amazing coach and really had some bad luck this past season. Without a doubt, I think that he will have a job soon. I know that Haus will be around for at least 1 more year at Carolina, but if they struggle again next year, I bet that the athletic department would decide that it would be time for a change. I know that it might be tough for Pressler to take that job, because it is the biggest rival of the school he once coached at, and it is less than 20 minutes away from where all the trouble occured this year. However, if he put those thoughts behind him and took the Carolina job, I think that he could do wonders there. Without a doubt, that program has been by far the most underachieving in the country for quite some time. They are just not getting the ballplayers they once did. Could it be because Haus and Klarmann do not have the people skills to get those ballplayers? In this day and age, UVA is probably the easiest sell for the best talent, but I think that UNC has all the great things UVA does so that they could get the same caliber of players.

1. A gorgeous campus

2. Away from home for most of the great ballplayers.

3. Great academics

4. Super facilities

5. Other great sports teams to watch

6. One of the best college towns in the country

Besides, I'm sure that Pressler has a bit of anger towards Duke, and at UNC, he would get to play them every year at least once. Do you think that would give him a little bit extra motivation?I think that if the UNC job opened up next year, Pressler should give it a shot. What do you all think?
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    by (#3651) on 7/22/06 @8:40PM
Carolina has historically had discipline problems. It's all been either hidden or spun so that nothing gets aired like in Durham last year. Whether justified or not, Pressler now has the reputation of not controlling his players. The last thing that UNC would do would be to take a chance on the coach of what people outside of lax think is "Rape University." Every lax player with a brain knows that no rape occurred, but a large part of the rest of the world feels exactly opposite. I can not imagine the Tarheel administration bucking public opinion and taking a shot on him.
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Pressler Deserves A 2nd Chance
    by (#136419) on 7/23/06 @2:45PM
I still think that UNC or any other school should give Mike Pressler a chance. Not only is he a great coach, but up until this incident, his teams never had major problems. Hopefully, schools would take into consideration that maybe Pressler has learned from this incident. Perhaps they would believe that Pressler will use more discipline and keep a better eye on his players and know what they are doing off the field. Knowing that everyone would be keeping more than an extra eye on Pressler and the team he is coaching should be plenty of motivation for Pressler to do the right things. With extra discipline both on and off the field, I bet that his teams would play even more up to their potential than his teams at Duke did.

P.S.-I do think, though, that this would be Pressler's 2nd and final chance. If any major incidents occur, nobody would want to hire him again.
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