Dan Chemotti, former assistant coach of the University of Loyola Maryland men’s lacrosse team, the 2012 Division I National Champion, was named the head coach of the University of Richmond men’s lacrosse team on Monday.
“It was a great feeling,” Chemotti said about becoming a head coach. “It was just very exciting. I knew from a long time ago that I wanted to be head coach and that coaching was my passion.
“The unfortunate thing is that I have to leave Loyola. … At the same time, I’m very excited to get going with the University of Richmond and the lacrosse program. And honestly, I’ve been more excited by the minute, every single day, and I really can’t wait to get down there and meet the people.”
Chemotti was chosen after a month-long nation-wide search, mainly because of his Division I coaching successes at similar institutions, deputy athletic director David Walsh, who managed the search, said.
“Dan is a person of great character and strong work ethic,” Walsh said, “He will bring a disciplined approach to the program and recruit student athletes who will represent the University of Richmond well, and of course, bring great experience and knowledge of Division I men’s lacrosse.”
Chemotti played Division I lacrosse at Duke, where he graduated in 2002. In 2003, he held his first coaching job at Dartmouth College, where he stayed for two years. After that, he coached another two years at St. John’s University before coming to Loyola in 2007, where he was the recruiting and offensive coordinator for six seasons. In his last year at Loyola, he helped lead the team to its national victory.
“I’m going to miss the people here the most,” Chemotti said. “It’s an amazing spot. The players on the team and the coaches that I work with – I don’t think it gets any better than those guys, so I’m really going to miss them, but I know that they support my decision, and that’s important to me, as well.”
Senior Ashley Cahill, the attack on the Loyola women’s team, said that she had heard nothing but great things about Chemotti from his players. “He was always the one making sure his players were making the right decisions day in and day out,” Cahill said, “Richmond is very lucky to have a coach like Chemotti coming in to start up their program.”
Senior midfielder on the Loyola men’s team, Sean O’Sullivan, said that Chemotti had been a huge mentor to him. “He’s everything you want in an assistant coach,” O’Sullivan said. “He focuses on small details and discipline to complete the big picture, and with Coach Chemotti, Richmond will not be an easy team to compete with in the coming years.”
Chemotti will miss coaching at Loyola and living in Baltimore, but he said that he had always known that he would have to leave in order to become a head coach.
With the new job title comes another transition, from coaching a championship team to coaching a startup team. Managing his patience may be his biggest difficulty, but Chemotti is excited to work with a new program, enabling him to establish the team’s culture from the beginning, he said.
“I know that Richmond is a tremendous academic institution,” Chemotti said. “And I know that it plays a very competitive brand of Division I athletics, and I think that lacrosse and Richmond are perfect matches for each other.”
Richmond’s student body also helps to make this match complete, he said, especially because so many students have been from the northeastern and mid-Atlantic regions, which have been target areas for the sport.
“I’m looking forward to getting settled in and getting recruits on campus,” he said, “and getting to know the players in the club program, and getting to know my team, and getting to kind of see the hand we’ve been dealt and the direction that we need to go.”
Chemotti has not yet met any of the players, but has spoken with some over the phone, he said. Others have reached out to him, expressing interest and congratulations, actions that Chemotti said had given him a good sense for his team.
“I hope to establish a program that is built on discipline and hard work,” he said, “and put together a team that is full of good people, not necessarily the best lacrosse players, but in the first year, we can certainly be a team of strong character, and in the lacrosse world, a team that people respect.”
Although Chemotti has already started working for the team, he will not arrive on campus until Oct. 12
Contact reporter Jamie Edelen at firstname.lastname@example.org