Meet Darry Thornton, longtime NCAA coach and current head men’s coach at Brevard College. He is an excellent man, coach, and is also a proud Black man. In this episode of Going Offsides Ryan will speak with Darry about his experiences in lacrosse, the role that race plays in lacrosse and lacrosse culture, and what can and should be done to address issues of race in the game.
Episode 2 was originally published on June 23, 2020.
Going Offsides with Darry Thornton
Scoop on Darry Thornton
Darry Thornton has been named Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach at Brevard College, announced Director of Athletics Myranda Nash.
Thornton arrives at Brevard College with 11 years of coaching experience at the college level. His coaching arc includes head coaching experience at Lees-McRae College (North Carolina), Mount Saint Mary’s College (New York), and Mohawk Valley Community College (New York).
“We are excited to start this new era of Brevard College men’s lacrosse with the appointment of Coach Thornton,” said Nash. “With his dedication to the overall student-athlete experience to go along with his expertise in the sport of lacrosse, Darry is an ideal choice to lead the Tornados.”
The hiring of Thornton came after a comprehensive national search for Brevard’s next Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach. Thornton will begin his duties immediately in preparation for the 2020-21 academic year and the 2021 competition schedule for the Tornado men’s lacrosse program.
“I want to thank Director of Athletics Myranda Nash and the entire search committee for the opportunity to lead the men’s lacrosse program and to add another piece to the growing Brevard College puzzle,” said Thornton. “I am extremely grateful and excited to get started, and build a program that will be successful in the classroom, in the community, and on the lacrosse field.”
Most recently, Thornton has worked as a consultant for over 25 college lacrosse programs across 11 states. In his consultant work, he has assisted a variety of NCAA Division II, Division III, and NJCAA schools with the evaluation of incoming student-athletes, scouting, video breakdown, and player development.
From 2013 to 2017, Thornton served as the Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach at NCAA Division II Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, North Carolina. At Lees-McRae, Thornton led the Bobcats to the most single-season wins in program history. The head coach also mentored a total of 15 Academic All-Conference performers, while guiding the team in the classroom to its highest GPA in program history. In addition, Thornton recruited and mentored Alec Molander, a four-time All-Conference performer who graduated from Lees-McRae with all-time school records in goals and points.
Prior to Lees-McRae, Thornton was at the helm of the Men’s Lacrosse program at Mohawk Valley Community College in Utica, New York. While at Mohawk Valley, he guided ten student-athletes to regional all-star game appearances to go along with five All-Conference honors.
Thornton’s first head coaching opportunity was at NCAA Division III Mount Saint Mary’s College in Newburgh, New York from 2009 to 2011. At Mount Saint Mary’s, he established the institution’s first-ever programs for both men’s and women’s lacrosse by recruiting over 50 student-athletes in just six months in preparation for each team’s inaugural seasons.
He began his coaching career as an Assistant Coach at NCAA Division III Hartwick College from 2006 to 2007. Thornton then served as Assistant Coach NCAA Division II Queens University of Charlotte from 2007 to 2009.
His college playing career began with two years at Hudson Valley Community College where he appeared in the regional final four each season. Thornton then played two years at goalkeeper for SUNY Oneonta, reaching the ECAC Championship as a senior.
A native of Schenectady, New York, Thornton holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Mass Communications from SUNY Oneonta and is currently pursuing a Master’s of Science in College Athletic Administration from Coker College.
Stay tuned for more great interviews by Nick and Ryan as they continue to grow the Going Offsides podcast. Keep up with Going Offsides on Twitter and Instagram through The Lacrosse Collective to stay in the conversation.