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Roy Simmons Jr. - Early Start

Famous Sports StarsOther SportsRoy Simmons Jr. Biography - Early Start, Chronology, Minor Controversy, Beyond The Game, Revolutionizing Lacrosse, Tearful Farewells - CONTACT INFORMATION

Early Start

Having practically grown up on Syracuse's lacrosse field, it came as no surprise that Simmons elected to attend SU and play for the Orangemen once he graduated from Kimball Union Academy in New Hampshire. In three years with the team, he was named an All-American twice, in 1957 and 1958. He served as team captain in 1958 as well. After graduating with a degree in sculpture in 1959 (Simmons' artwork is featured in museums across the United States), Simmons took a job as coach of Syracuse's freshman lacrosse team. He served in this position, and as an assistant coach with his father's varsity team, for twelve years. He took over as head coach of the varsity team in 1971, following his father's retirement.

Known for stressing academics and life skills as strongly as athletics, Simmons became the only men's lacrosse coach to capture five Division I national championships during his tenure. His 290-96 record made him the winningest coach in Syracuse's history. Simmons led the Orangemen to the national semifinals for sixteen years straight—his team lost a semifinal round to Princeton just prior to his announcing his retirement—and he coached 130 All-Americans, four national players of the year and five championship MVPs.


1935 Born August 6 in Syracuse, New York
1955 Enters Syracuse University
1956 Joins Syracuse lacrosse team
1957 Named All-American
1958 Named All-American and team captain
1959 Graduates Syracuse with degree in fine arts
1959 Joins Syracuse lacrosse program as coach of freshman team
1971 Succeeds father, Roy Simmons Sr., as men's varsity lacrosse coach
1983 Captures first of five national titles
1988 Captures second national title
1989 Captures third, and second consecutive, national title
1990 Brings team to Lockerbie, Scotland to memorialize Pan Am Flight 103 victims
1990 Team wins third consecutive championship, which must later be forfeited per NCAA ruling
1993 Captures fourth national title
1995 Wins fifth and final national title
1995 NCAA determines Syracuse must relinquish 1990 championship title due to minor infractions
1998 Retires with 290-96 record

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