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Saskatchewan Rush lacrosse team fires head coach Jeff McComb

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Former Saskatchewan Rush head coach Jeff McComb joined the Rush coaching staff in 2014 and helped the team win three NLL championships.  – Apr 4, 2022

The Saskatchewan Rush management announced on Saturday that head coach Jeff McComb has been relieved of his duties.

So far this season, the Rush have gone 4-10 under McComb.

They are currently in last place in the West Division.

“Somewhere along the way, the guys aren’t getting the message,” General Manager Derek Keenan said. “Again, that’s not Jeff’s fault, it’s just a gut feel(ing) that eventually kind of got to me and I felt that we needed to make the change to see what we can do here these last four games.”

Read more: USask Huskies men’s basketball coach resigns amidst playoffs

Keenan and offensive coach Jimmy Quinlan will be associate head coaches for the remainder of the 2022 season, alongside defensive coach Jeremy Tallevi.

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Keenan, who’s been in the National Lacrosse League (NLL) for 30 years, said this was “by far the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make.”

“It’s clear we have not met expectations this year but it’s not all on Jeff McComb. He’s a great coach. He’s diligent, creative and detailed. Jeff has done the work that’s expected of a head coach, but the team has not performed to the level of our expectations,” Keenan said in a team release.

The team’s veteran-laden group realizes that they hold some responsibility for their former head coaches departure.

“I’ve spoken with our leadership group and they’re kind of p—ed off at themselves that they allowed this to happen and ultimately it’s on them,” Keenan explained.

McComb joined the Rush coaching staff in 2014 and helped the team win three NLL championships.

McComb was promoted to head coach in August 2020, but his debut was delayed until December 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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In the release, the Rush said they are turning to the younger Quinlan “to help salvage” the rest of the season.

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Following this season, Keenan will step back from the bench and Quinlan will lead the Rush as head coach in the 2022-23 season.

“He epitomizes what the organization is all about. Hard work, dedication, commitment, confidence, diligence and perseverance. Jimmy was all of that as a player and has been as an assistant coach. I believe Jimmy will bring those same qualities to the table as head coach of the Rush,” Keenan said.

“My focus is really to make the game fun again for the guys,” Quinlan said. “Being prepared for what we have in front of us which is Vancouver, and then the final three games.”

Described as a former superstar, Quinlan is the only player in franchise history to have his number retired and was team captain from 2011 to 2013.

Quinlan, 40, joined the Rush coaching staff in 2014 as the defensive coach.

Keenan looks to fill the offensive coaching position for the Rush in the 2022 off-season.

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