Major League Lacrosse Commissioner is proud to announce today that the Philadelphia Barrage are back. The team will operate under Mark Burdett and Spencer Ford will make his head coaching debut for the Barrage.
The move comes after yesterday’s announcement that the Atlanta Blaze would suspend operations for the upcoming 2020 season. The MLL also announced a new franchise last week — the Connecticut Hammerheads.
The Barrage moved from Bridgeport to Philadelphia for the 2004 MLL season. The Philadelphia Barrage dominated MLL during these years, making the playoffs four of their five years and winning the MLL Championship three times. The Barrage featured some of the most storied names in MLL history, including Matt Striebel, Brian Spallina, Ryan Boyle, Roy Colsey and Brian Reese.
“We are proud that the Barrage are back in Philadelphia,” said Major League Lacrosse Commissioner, Alexander Brown. “Rooting ourselves in Philadelphia allows MLL to tap into one of the largest youth lacrosse markets in the country and offer these young fans the opportunity to see the highest level of play in lacrosse all summer long. Mark Burdett is a seasoned veteran in the professional sports landscape, and he will create a great experience for partners, players and fans to enjoy some of the best talent Major League Lacrosse has to offer.”
Mark Burdett has more than thirty-five years of experience. As a top sports and media executive, Burdett served in senior roles for the Baltimore Ravens, the Washington Redskins and several major market television stations. Burdett has served as the President of MLL’s Chesapeake Bayhawks and will continue acting as the Chief Revenue officer of MLL.
“We are thrilled to be bringing the Barrage back to Philadelphia,” said Mark Burdett, President of the Philadelphia Barrage. “The history of success for this franchise paired with the development of the market over the last decade, makes this a perfect match. We’re excited to proactively work with community leaders, businesses, and local non-profit organizations to bring a positive impact to the entire Philadelphia community.”
The Philadelphia Barrage will be led by Spencer Ford. Ford began with Major League Lacrosse in the league’s inaugural year, playing one game in 2001. After four years of not playing, Ford made his return in 2006 for the LA Riptide. His career ended in 2009 due to injury, but his value in the league had become known and he was immediately brought into the Bayhawks’ front office as the team’s General Manager. Since 2009 Ford has served in General Manager and Offensive Coordinator positions for the Bayhawks and the Atlanta Blaze. After developing the most successful team in Blaze history in 2019, Ford is ready to step forward and lead the Philadelphia Barrage.
“I could not be more excited to reintroduce the Barrage to the fans in Philadelphia,” said Ford. “Fans will see the best talent lacrosse has to offer in the men wearing the Barrage blue and orange. The tradition of success built in ’04 to ’08 is not lost on me. We look forward to bringing the trophy home to Philadelphia at the end of the season.”
The Barrage season will open in Philadelphia on June 6.
Editor’s Note: This information and parts of the text were provided from a news release by Major League Lacrosse.