article courtesy of Brad Kelly of Durhamregion.com
Brad MacArthur, an Alum of St. Andrews, class of 1998, and the only lacrosse player to be featured on our Hall of Fame Wall was recently named as the associate head coach of the Israel Men's National team that will compete in the 2015 world indoor lacrosse championships in New York, as well as serve as a scout for the field lacrosse team at the 2014 world championships in Denver.
To make it a truly world-wide affair, the offer was presented to him while competing at a tournament in the Czech Republic and it came from the director of Israel Lacrosse, Scott Neiss. The two have known each other for a long time, and MacArthur was approached about being a coach for the development team that was in the tournament.
"We had breakfast on the last day and he pitched an offer and said he had to put it through with the board, but was I interested," in joining the Israel program, says MacArthur in picking up the story. "He said the only issue we might face was that I wasn't Jewish. I told him if it was an issue he could get over, I could get over it too."
An official offer came in late June, and MacArthur was quick to accept.
MacArthur has coached at various levels, including currently as an assistant with the Clarington Green Gaels Jr. B lacrosse team of the Ontario Lacrosse Association, and the Canadian Lacrosse League's Durham Turfdogs. Brad has also played many years of Pro lacrosse on the NLL until his seven-year pro career ended in 2007 with the Toronto Rock. He has also been active in helping recruit players to come down to St. Andrews University to play including current SAU volunteer assistant Tom Watt and a 2006 Alum, Bryan Riddle. Both came here because of him!
"Brad is an excellent addition for Israel as they make their indoor debut," says Green Gaels president Doug Luey in a press release. "He understands the game at both ends of the floor and has experience with coaching young players. His calm approach should be a tremendous asset for Israel."
MacArthur has no idea what the numbers might be in terms of a talent pool to draw from, guessing it could be anywhere from four to five to as many as 40 to 50. He does know over the next little while, he'll be asking a lot of questions.
"Some of the challenges will be identifying Jewish Canadian box and field players," he admits. "Jewish Americans are a little more stand out and their coaches have identified them already. We don't have that identification yet.
"Travel and getting everyone together at the same time is also going to be tough."
But, he adds, with the advancements in technology, there are ways to work around the pending geographic barriers.
Selection and training camps for the respective Israel teams are planned for April of 2014 and 2015. Team Israel will play a mini exhibition schedule in August with games in Baltimore. MD.