Jul 24, 2017

IMG_0046.JPG(July 24, 2017)… Rochester Knighthawks Owner and General Manager Curt Styres announced today that the team has named Duane Jacobs the Director of Player Development. The Knighthawks Hall of Famer will begin his new role immediately as the team prepares for the 2017 National Lacrosse League Entry Draft and the 2018 season.

It was his success with the Six Nations Chiefs and his commitment to the game that convinced Styres to bring Jacobs back to the organization. 

“He has been to the Ontario Finals five straight seasons and won three Mann Cups,” said Styres of Jacobs, who has worked in the front office and on the bench for the Chiefs. “One of his jobs is recruiting players, and people want to play for him. He is well-respected.”

More importantly, Jacobs has continued to coach minor lacrosse to mentor the next generation of stars in Six Nations.

“At this stage in his life, his heart is in the right place,” said Styres. “He is spreading his knowledge and giving back to the youth. We are excited to have him start the next chapter of his career with the Knighthawks.”

Jacobs, who coached Six Nations to a Zone Championship and 22 straight wins at the Bantam level, will now begin familiarizing himself with the roster and creating relationships that will ensure the Knighthawks’ success – both on and off the field. 

“I am going to be working mostly with the players, the coaches and Curt to try to make the team better,” he said. “I will have my hands in a little bit of everything.”

As the Director of Player Development, Jacobs’ day-to-day job responsibilities include preparing scouting reports on players and the team in order to create plans and opportunities for improvement. He will be a constant presence at practices and games, as he provides the players with all the tools necessary to sharpen and develop their skills. Using his years of expertise, Jacobs will also analyze and identify opponents’ tendencies, and work closely with the coaching staff to implement strategies to prepare the Knighthawks for preseason and regular season games. 

By coming onboard, the 51-year-old Jacobs returns to the organization where he experienced the most success in his professional career. 

“In a way it’s a bit of a homecoming for me,” he said. “I spent so much time in Rochester in my playing career. I still have friends up there and the fans were always great to me. It means a lot going back to Rochester to try to help them get back to the top of the league.”

Jacobs played eight of his 11 seasons (1993-2003) with the Knighthawks and was a four-time All-Pro. He broke into pro lacrosse with the Detroit Turbos (1993-94) before becoming a founding member of the Knighthawks in 1995. 

“Dewey” reached superstar status while in Rochester, where he played for the Knighthawks from 1995 to 2002. In 1997, he was a key member of the team's first championship squad. With the teal and purple, he was also a two-time team MVP (1996 and 1999) and served as the team captain during the 2001-02 season. The forward played in 93 games and recorded 169 goals and 185 assists for 354 points. 

“He was a big guy on the floor to begin with by nature,” said former teammate and current Knighthawks head coach Mike Hasen. “I think he cherished the big moments and he came up with some key goals that won games for us.”

Jacobs spent his final season with the Buffalo Bandits in 2002-03. He finished his pro career with 196 goals and 206 assists in 113 games. After retiring in 2003, he spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Buffalo Bandits. Jacobs also served as the head coach of the Minnesota Swarm from 2007-09 and compiled a .521 winning percentage. 

Jacobs 13109 2.jpgIn 2009, he returned to Rochester to join the inaugural class of the Knighthawks Hall of Fame. At the time of his induction, he still ranked third in goals and points, and fourth in assists in Knighthawks' history.

In 2015, Jacobs was enshrined in the Ontario Lacrosse Hall of Fame for his work as an executive and a player. During his playing career, the Six Nations product won three straight Mann Cups with the Six Nations Chiefs (1994-96). He also captured Senior “B” President’s Cups with the Owen Sound North Stars and Kitchener-Waterloo Kodiaks. The hard-working forward amassed 797 points in his career in 196 games. 

After wrapping up his playing days, Jacobs was named the general manager of the Six Nations Chiefs and helped build a team that won three Mann Cup championships (2013, 2014 and 2016). Jacobs, who currently serves as the Chiefs’ president and assistant coach, was the GM from 2007 to 2015.

On the international stage, Jacobs helped the Iroquois Nationals win back-to-back silver medals (2007 and 2011) as the program’s head coach. In 2015, he served as an assistant coach for the silver-medal winning Nationals at the World Indoor Lacrosse Championship. He also played in the 2003 event and won silver with the Iroquois.

Knighthawks alternate governor Gewas Schindler has seen firsthand the passion that Jacobs has for the game. Having another person of his caliber in the front office will only strengthen the team’s resolve and commitment to win a sixth Champion’s Cup.

“Duane Jacobs has a lifetime of box lacrosse knowledge,” said Schindler, who worked with Jacobs on the Iroquois Nationals. “He has played, coached and managed at all levels of the game. His extensive time in the NLL, and with the Iroquois Nationals and Six Nations Chiefs will allow him to help the Rochester Knighthawks organization immediately. He has had a great impact on the indoor game throughout his career. He has all the tools to fill the new role of Director of Player Development.”

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