Storm Solidify Coaching Staff
TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Storm is pleased to announce the extension of head coach Dave Ewart. Joining Ewart on the sidelines is offensive coordinator Lawrence Samuels and defensive assistant coach Doug Kay announced Storm president Derrick Brooks.
"We are excited with the makeup of our coaching staff," said Brooks. "With Dave leading the way, the return of Lawrence and the addition of Doug, we feel we have the staff to ensure we are serious contenders. Our coaches have a tremendous amount of experience that our players will be able to lean on and we feel will that help us to continue to grow."
Along-time Storm associate head coach, Ewart now enters his third season at the helm. He is tasked with helping to transform the team on and off of the field. Along with play calling and the overall operations of the football team he is responsible for the development of the offensive and defensive lines. Under his direction each of the past four seasons, he has had a lineman earn All-Arena honors and the red-zone run game is one of the best in the AFL
"We still have a lot of hard work ahead of us to get ready for next season," added Ewart. "This is a challenge that I accept and that I enjoy. This is a tremendous opportunity and we have the make-up to succeed at a high level."
"The addition of Doug, with the return of Lawrence, is a big boost to what we are trying to accomplish on the field. We are looking forward to a great season on and off of the field in 2013 for our fans."
Samuels returns for his second season as offensive coordinator. He is responsible for the development of the wide receivers and will also assist with special teams. The Storm offense saw vast improvement under his direction in 2012.
The legendary AFL Ironman and Storm great spent two seasons as the wide receivers coach for Central State University (Wilberforce, OH) prior to joining Ewart's staff. Samuels was the AFL's all-time leading receiver prior to the end of his career and he was the first player in the history of the AFL to surpass 1,000 career receptions and the sixth overall in all of professional football.
"I am excited to be back in the Blue and Gold and working with coach Ewart and coach Kay," stated Samuels. "They have a great passion for the game and we expect big things this upcoming season."
Kay returns to his AFL roots, as he began his AFL coaching career with the Storm in 1993 as defensive coordinator for the ArenaBowl VII Champions. He last coached in the AFL with the Columbus Destroyers from 2006-08 where he led the team to its lone ArenaBowl appearance in 2007. Kay has nearly 50 years of coaching experience under his belt and will be responsible for assisting Ewart in the development of the defense and the defensive backs.
"I am happy to return back to the sidelines in Tampa Bay," added Kay. "I want to thank Dave, Derrick and Jeff [Gooch] for the opportunity and I look forward to helping the organization in any way that I can."
An original franchise of the AFL, the Five-Time Tampa Bay Storm enters its 26th season. Awarded the 2012 AFL Support Staff of the Year, the Storm strives to provide its fans and opponents with world class service. The 2013 season kicks off at home Saturday, March 23 at 7:30 PM versus South Division rival Jacksonville Sharks. Season tickets are available, for more information call 813.301.6600 or visit www.tampabaystorm.com . Additionally fans and sponsors can follow the Storm on Facebook (Tampa Bay Storm) or Twitter (@tampabaystorm) for up to date news and exclusive content.
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