Legends of the Game

In the fiftieth edition of “Legends of the Game” I have chosen my good friend Coach Bob Tarring, as the career we are going to look at.

From the Stevenson University Mustangs Bio:

An avid supporter and coach of lacrosse since 1971, Bob has been a part of two national championship teams at Division I and II. He has coached 49 All-Americans, including seven goalies, 16 Hall of Fame members and two ILF Grandmasters World Championship teams.

A 1968 graduate of Virginia, Tarring began his coaching career with the Cavaliers in 1971 under head coach Glen Theil and spent three seasons as the assistant head coach working with the defense and goalies. The team went 31-10 during that time and made three NCAA tournament appearances, highlighted by its 1972 national championship.

Mr. Tarring coached three All-Americans while in Charlottesville, including three-time honoree Bruce Mangles, Boo Smith and goalie Rodney Rullman who ranks second on the school’s career saves list with 553.

In 1974, Bob moved back to Baltimore and became a scout and advisor at Towson under head coach Carl Runk. In 1975, he became the Tigers’ defensive coordinator.  Coach spent six seasons at Towson from 1974-79 during which the team won the 1974 College Division National Championship after finishing with a 14-1 record and capturing the title with an 18-17 overtime victory against Hobart.

Tarring worked with five All-Americans at Towson, including goalies Jeff Jones, Paul Russo and Tim Hastings as well as defensemen Tom Harrison and Steve Hornish.

Bob left Towson in 1980 to become the assistant head coach at the University of Baltimore under head coach Richie Meade. He spent four seasons at UB until the program was discontinued. While there, he coached All-American goalie Vinny Pfiefer and helped the team to an upset of fifth-ranked Maryland in 1980.

During his tenure at Baltimore from 1980-84, Tarring was also the Executive Director of the U.S. Lacrosse Foundation and Hall of Fame before serving as an administrator, television commentator and head coach of Team USA in the Indoor Lacrosse League (now National Lacrosse League) from 1985-87.

Coach Tarring went further, explaining to me about the forming of the  “Super Series”

“After I left the LF, I was approached by a group from KC  to create an indoor LAX league on roller skates!

I had a few tryouts and only a few guys could skate.The players thought it was crazy, especially from a college coach.
I went back to the group in KC and finally convinced them to do it in a traditional way. Took some convincing!

So, We decided to have a USA team and a Canadian team.

We would play match games in different cities in the US and Canada to test the markets. Well it went well.

The USA won one game out of eight or nine and that was at the Philadelphia Spectrum.

I coached the USA team for half of the exhibitions and it was then decided we get a Canadian coach and goalie.

I went upstairs to do TV and  manage the team.

A year or so of these games, the group started selling franchises AND thus the beginning of the NLL.”

After a five-year hiatus scouting and working camps and tournaments, Coach Tarring returned to the college game in 1992 as an assistant coach at Goucher during the team’s inaugural season, beginning a 17-year career with the Gophers. He remained a staple of the program under three different head coaches, helping the team transition to the Landmark Conference in 2008 after 17 seasons in the CAC.

Goucher totaled 117 wins, 34 All-CAC selections and eight All-Landmark honorees during Tarring’s tenure, including USILA Honorable Mention All-American defender Chris Webber and goalie Craig Reeves. The Gophers won a school record 13 wins in 2001 and posted an 11-5 record in 2008 and advanced to the Landmark championship game.

From 2009-2011 Bob coached at Stevenson University, followed by a couple of years coaching at his alma mater, the St. Paul’s School (Brooklandville, Md), and then with the CCBC Essex Knights.

Coach Tarring has NCAA Championship’s from University of Virginia and Towson University.

In 2011 Coach Tarring was inducted into the University of Baltimore Hall of Fame

Off the field, Bob is a board certified owner of his own company, Tarring Orthotic & Prosthetic Services, Inc., located in Towson.

The Super Series’ first game at the Spectrum…Credit to LaxSchool for originally posting to their YouTube channel.

Game two at the Spectrum, and the last game of the Super Series…Credit and thank you to Dave Coleman of Retrolax…check out more videos on the Retrolax YouTube channel or Crossecheck.com

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