SportsLowdown.com is run by Donny Rieber and focuses on FIT Sports
Back on September 19, Florida Tech announced that Ryan McAleavey was leaving his position as head coach of the men’s lacrosse program due to personal reasons. It took one week for the school to find his replacement and they didn’t have to look far, as assistant coach Mark Penn was promoted to the position.
“Coach Mac and I are pretty close off the field as far as our personal lives, and I knew what he was going through because we shared a lot of it together just in conversation and in prayer together,” said Penn. “I had been preparing for a bit that this possibility could arise and was in-step with coach Mac the whole way, in the sense that we were kind of going through it all together.”
As you would expect, Penn was hoping that Florida Tech would offer him the opportunity and when you consider that he has been so involved in the program for five years now, it seems he was the obvious choice.
“I was hoping”, Penn said when asked if he was expecting to be offered the job. “I’ve recruited this whole group here and I feel like I’ve given my heart and soul to it. I felt like it would be the easiest transition, I felt like the kids wanted it, so I didn’t have a lot of doubt, but until it’s final, you never know.”
To that end, Penn said that the reaction of the team to the change seemed very good.
“When we had the meeting about this the reaction was strong, very encouraging for me,” he said. “When they’re buying into everything I’m saying when they’re putting everything out on the field into every practice, that’s the sign, I can see the fire in their eyes. Obviously, the honeymoon will wear off, so it’s up to me to make sure that I continue to earn their trust.”
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