September 2, 2003

Wilson Leaves for Green

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Bill Wilson’s tenure as the top assistant of the Cornell men’s lacrosse team turned out to be a short one, as he accepted a job as the head coach at Dartmouth on Aug. 19. Wilson served as assistant head coach and defensive coordinator on Jeff Tambroni’s staff following a seven-year stint at Hofstra in a similar capacity.

“I’m happy for him,” said Tambroni. “As a friend, and as a colleague, it’s nice to see him move into a head coaching position, especially at his age.”

Wilson joined the Red staff along with Ben DeLuca ’98 prior to the 2003 season after having previously served as the defensive and recruiting coordinator at Hofstra. He was a key factor in the Flying Dutchmen’s run of four NCAA trips in five years in the late 1990s.

Prior to his tenure on Long Island, Wilson served as an assistant at Princeton for two years following his graduation from Loyola in 1994. Wilson was a member of the Princeton staff in 1996, a year in which the Tigers won both the Ivy League and NCAA championships.

Wilson takes over a Dartmouth program that enjoyed a tremendous resurgence in 2003 following several lean years. The Green tied for the Ivy title with Princeton and Cornell, earning a piece of the league championship for the first time since 1965. It later won a random drawing for the Ancient Eight’s automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, its first ever. The Green’s 11 wins in 2003 were its most since the 1948 season.

Following this breakthrough season, former Green coach Rick Sowell left the team to become the head coach at St. Johns. Wilson was among the first candidates contacted for the job that he later interviewed for and accepted, according to Tambroni.

“I value the opportunity to coach at Dartmouth,” said Wilson in a statement released by the Dartmouth athletic department last month. “The Big Green program rose to national and Ivy prominence last season, and I’m excited about continuing the momentum and facing the challenges that lie ahead.”

With Wilson’s departure, DeLuca will be advanced to the position of top assistant. The third member is yet to be determined. However, one person who will not join the Red staff is Ryan McClay ’03.

McClay, who is widely regarded as one of the best players ever to wear the Carnelian and White, recently opened an indoor lacrosse and soccer facility in Brewster, N.Y. He was also hired as the varsity lacrosse coach at Mahopac High School, his alma mater. McClay, a long-stick defenseman, played for the New Jersey Pride of Major League Lacrosse this summer.

Archived article by Owen Bochner