Two-Time NCAA National Champ Jez Set to Lead Embry-Riddle Men’s Lacrosse
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida – One of the most decorated head coaches in NCAA men’s lacrosse history is set to take over the Embry-Riddle Men’s Lacrosse program as two-time NCAA II National Champion John Jez has been announced as just the second-ever head coach by ERAU’s Director of Athletics John Phillips. Jez takes the reins from Spencer Wims after the latter departed the program to pursue new lacrosse coaching opportunities closer to home.
“We are absolutely thrilled to bring John Jez on board to lead our men’s lacrosse program,” Phillips said. “His philosophy and leadership style align perfectly with the culture and values of our department and we are thrilled to add a coach with his experience to our staff. Everyone will focus on his national championships, his coach of the year honors and the number of All-American’s that he has coached — and trust me, I love that part of his resume — but to me, it’s his veteran leadership, his experience with USA Lacrosse, as well as his time at West Point that I get excited about.”
Jez comes to Embry-Riddle after two seasons at Post University where he turned around a program that had gone winless in the season prior to his arrival. Jez’s previous head coaching stops included an unprecedented 11-year run at LIU Post/Long Island University (2007-17), and two years at Pace (2002-04). Jez also served for 11 years as an Assistant General Manager and then General Manager of the United States Men’s Lacrosse National Team where his teams won two Wold Championships (2006, 2010), and three U-19 championships (2008, 2012, 2016). From 2017-21, Jez served in several capacities at West Point, including as the football and lacrosse equipment manager.
Jez boasts a 163-63 (.721) career record in NCAA II competition, highlighted by back-to-back national titles at LIU Post in 2009 and 2010. Jez claimed a pair of National Coach of the Year honors while at LIU Post (2009, 2014), and in total made three appearances in the NCAA II national title game and seven trips to the NCAA II national semifinals.
“I am extremely excited about the opportunity at Embry-Riddle,” Jez said. “There is a huge growth opportunity for Embry-Riddle Men’s Lacrosse, both regionally and nationally and I am very much looking forward to getting started building relationships across campus and in our athletic department.”
Jez’s teams have featured both high-powered offenses and stout defenses, twice leading the country in scoring offense (Pace – 2003, LIU Post – 2009), and finishing as the second-best scoring defense in the nation three times (LIU Post – 2009, 2010, 2011). In his 15 campaigns as head coach, Jez has coached 58 All-Americans, four USILA Position Players of the Year, and two National Players of the Year, as well as 14 Scholar All-Americans. While at LIU Post, Jez’s squads claimed seven East Coast Conference Championships.
Heavily involved in the sport of lacrosse, Jez has previously served as the Chairman of the NCAA II National Championship committee, the USILA All-American committee, the USILA National Ranking committee, and the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Rules committee.
A 1994 graduate of Pfeiffer, Jez was a two-time All-American for the Falcons and received his degree in Sports Medicine before earning a Master’s in Criminal Justice from LIU Post.
“Embry-Riddle is a world class University, and the athletic program has been extremely successful for over three decades,” Jez said. “I hope to carry that success over to the men’s lacrosse program. Our program will be more than just what happens on the field, we are going to do our best in the classroom, as well as in the community. We will hold ourselves to a high standard, one worthy of the Student, Person, Player philosophy.”
“We’re thrilled to welcome John and his wife Christine to the Embry-Riddle family, and can’t wait to for him to get started,” Phillips said.