SPIRE Institute & Academy (IA) recently announced lacrosse as its newest sport to be added to its already extensive athletic programs. The only missing piece for SPIRE’s latest sports offering was the ideal coach to lead student athletes along the path to success on the field.
After an intensive search in partnership with Legendary Sports Group (LSG), SPIRE announced the addition of Lelan Rogers as Director of Lacrosse / Head Coach. A veteran in the coaching ranks with success at nearly every level of the game, Coach Rogers brings over 30 years of experience to help build SPIRE’s lacrosse program from the ground up. Most recently, he served as the assistant coach of the Syracuse University men’s lacrosse team, where he orchestrated the Orange’s defense since 2007 and played a key role in the 2008 and 2009 NCAA Division I National Championship titles.
Dave Cottle, President of LSG, explains why Coach Rogers is the ideal leader to launch the SPIRE Lacrosse program. “If I was starting a program in lacrosse, Lelan Rogers would be my pick to get it off the ground. A leader with great recruiting skills, along with a national championship pedigree, SPIRE has hit it out of the park with this hire.”
Prior to his tenure at Syracuse, he also saw success for a number of years at the Division III level. Coach Rogers spent five years as the head coach of the SUNY Cortland men’s program, where he led the Red Dragons to five NCAA Division III Tournament berths and four SUNYAC titles. He also spent nine seasons at the helm at Ohio Wesleyan, where he led the men’s lacrosse team to seven NCAA Division III playoff appearances and a 109-33 record.
While the majority of his career has been within the collegiate level, Coach Rogers also spent a season in the professional lacrosse ranks, where he was head coach of the MLL’s Chicago Machine in 2007.
SPIRE Co-Managing Director Ted Meekma feels that Lelan Rogers is the perfect fit for SPIRE. “SPIRE is very serious about lacrosse. That’s why, with LSG’s help, we searched nationwide for our Director / Head Coach. And in Lelan Rogers, we found the ideal person to run this program. His extensive collegiate coaching experience, his inspiring leadership skills and his deep knowledge of the game check all the boxes for us. We’re very fortunate to have Lelan onboard.”
Lelan is excited to start building one of the premier lacrosse academy programs in the nation. “Great organizations are made up of great people, and SPIRE has an abundance of great people that believe in the SPIRE way,” he explains. “After touring the facilities, which are incredible, and researching the people, philosophies, values and principles of SPIRE, I knew it was the right fit for my career path.”
In all, he has coached 80 All-Americans on the collegiate level between Syracuse University, SUNY Cortland and Ohio Wesleyan University. A 1987 graduate of Syracuse, Rogers was not only a member of the Orange lacrosse team, but also team captain for the wrestling program. Prior to attending Syracuse, he was also a three-sport star at St. Lawrence University, participating in lacrosse and football, but was most notably a Division III National Championship wrestler in 1985.
“I truly believe that once student athletes and their parents research what SPIRE Academy is all about and how it can shape their future, it will be an easy decision,” Lelan says. “SPIRE is much more specialized and focused on the needs of the student athlete than the traditional academy setting. That’s why I am excited about SPIRE Academy and SPIRE Lacrosse.”