|Position:||Head Men's Lacrosse Coach|
|Phone:||203-254-4000 ext. 2073|
The 2017 season is Andy Copelan's ninth at the helm of the Fairfield University men’s lacrosse team. He has posted a 73-49 (.598) record with the Stags and owns a 10-year NCAA Division I head coaching record of 91-64 (.587).
Copelan was named the program’s third head coach in varsity history on August 25, 2008 and has returned the Stags to the national conversation. Fairfield has entered the USILA national rankings in six of Copelan’s previous eight years on the sidelines and defeated a nationally-rank foe in seven of his eight campaigns with the Stags.
Copelan led the Stags into a new era beginning in 2015, as Fairfield joined the nationally-prominent Colonial Athletic Association. The Stags have made an immediate impact on the CAA, winning back-to-back regular season titles. Fairfield hosted the 2015 CAA Championship on newly-constructed Conway Field at Rafferty Stadium. In 2016, the Stags advanced to their first-ever CAA Championship Game.
Copelan was tabbed as the CAA Coach of the Year in 2015. In two seasons with the Association, the Stags have collected 14 All-CAA honors, highlighted by 2015 Rookie of the Year recognition for Will Fox ’18 and 2016 Rookie and co-Player of the Year nods for Colin Burke ’19.
Fairfield student-athletes also continued to gain the national and regional spotlight in 2016. Burke and TJ Neubauer ’16 were USILA All-America Honorable Mentions with Neubauer also garnering All-New England First Team distinction for the third straight season.
Neubauer was also drafted by the Rochester Rattlers in the fourth round of the Major League Lacrosse Collegiate Draft. Neubauer was the highest-drafted Stag since Greg Downing ’07 was tabbed as the sixth-overall pick and only First Round selection in program history in 2007. Neubauer was the 10th Stag during Copelan’s tenure to be drafted or signed as a free agent into the MLL ranks.
The 2014 edition of the club boasted a final record of 12-4, tying the program’s single-season wins mark. The campaign began with a record-setting 7-0 start and included the team’s first-ever ECAC Lacrosse League Regular Season Championship and a trip to ECAC Championship Game.
Fairfield made four consecutive ECAC postseason appearances from 2011-14, including three trips to the ECAC Championship Game. Along the way, the program earned several landmark victories. Copelan’s 2013 club recorded the Stags’ first-ever victory over the nation’s top-ranked team with an overtime triumph at No. 1 Denver, and the 2010 Fairfield team topped a Notre Dame club that went on to reach the NCAA National Championship Game.
Copelan has seen his student-athletes excel in the classroom as well. During his stay at the helm, every student-athlete that has completed his eligibility has also earned a degree from Fairfield. The Stags had 39 student-athletes earn All-ECAC Academic Team honors under Copelan’s tutelage, including a program-high 10 honorees in 2014. In 2015, Max Buchanan ’15 and Tristan Sperry ’15 collected USILA Scholar All-America distinctions following their senior campaigns.
Signs of the Stags’ return to national prominence were immediate when Copelan took the reins for the 2009 season. His first team went 7-6 overall to earn the program’s first winning record since 2005 and a winning mark (4-3) in the ECAC Lacrosse League for the first time since joining the league in 2006. Fairfield has continued its upward trend under Copelan; the Stags have never closed the year with a sub-.500 record overall or in conference play during his tenure.
Fairfield is the second head coaching stop on Copelan’s resume, who was the youngest head coach in the nation when he was hired to lead Marist College in 2004. In his first season with the Red Foxes, he was named the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Coach of the Year following a MAAC Regular Season Championship and the program’s first winning season in six years. In 2005, he led Marist to its first-ever NCAA postseason berth.
His two-year run with the Red Foxes produced nine All-MAAC honorees, including 2004 Offensive Player and Rookie of the Year Keith Detelj and 2005 Rookie of the Year Dan Needle.
After his stint at Marist, Copelan held an assistant coaching position at the University of Maryland from 2006-08, rising to the offensive coordinator position for his last campaign with the Terps. Maryland reached the NCAA Tournament in each of Copelan’s three seasons, highlighted by a trip to the 2006 Final Four.
Copelan also served as the recruiting coordinator for Maryland in his final two seasons, with great success. Inside Lacrosse ranked the Terps’ 2007 incoming class as the second best in the nation, and the 2008 class was dubbed as a third-best in the country. Individually, Copelan helped the Terps to secure six of 2008’s top 50 high school recruits.
As a student-athlete, Copelan was a four-year varsity letter winner at Bucknell University. He earned All-Patriot League accolades for his performance on the field in 2003 and was named to the league’s Academic Honor Roll in each of his seasons with the Bison.