Syracuse to honor legendary lacrosse coach Roy Simmons, Jr.

Orange Nation

COURTESY: Syracuse Athletics

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (SU ATHLETICS) — The legendary and widely respected Roy Simmons Jr. ‘59 will be added to the exclusive class of leaders in the Syracuse University Athletics Ring of Honor in the Carrier Dome. The longtime Orange head coach who guided the men’s lacrosse program to six National Championships started his Syracuse career as a standout student-athlete, playing for his father, Roy Simmons Sr. The ceremony will take place during the 2022 Orange men’s lacrosse season.

“Coach Simmons is the architect of the most successful program in the history of Men’s Lacrosse,” said Syracuse Director of Athletics John Wildhack. “His six national championships set the standard. Equally important was the impact he had on every player he coached. Coach Simmons was a teacher in the truest sense of the word. He prepared young men to have success long after their Lacrosse careers ended.  

“Being in Coach Simmons’ presence is always an honor and a learning experience. He is truly a renaissance man. Coach Simmons deserves to join Ernie Davis, Jim Brown, Floyd Little, Coach Boeheim and Pearl Washington in the Syracuse Athletics Ring of Honor.”

One of the greatest coaches in the history of the game, Simmons Jr. transformed Syracuse into the greatest program in collegiate lacrosse. He will join five others in the Ring of Honor, including Syracuse head basketball coach Jim Boeheim ’66, G ‘73, football legend Jim Brown ’57, Ernie Davis ’62, Floyd Little ‘67 and Dwayne ‘Pearl’ Washington ’98.

The two-time honorable mention All-American was Syracuse’s second leading scorer, behind Jim Brown, in 1957. Shortly after his playing career, Simmons Jr. joined his father’s coaching staff. In 1971 Simmons Jr. was named head coach at his alma mater when his father retired.

One of just five coaches in the more than 100-year history of the program, Simmons Jr. laid the groundwork for Orange success. His teams won six National Championships and produced more than 100 All-Americans and five National Players of the Year, and 15 National Position Player of the Year Awards. Simmons Jr. became the first coach in NCAA Division I history to win five National Championships and ranks second all-time with six national titles.

Simmons Jr. amassed many achievements and accolades throughout his career, including:

  • 1957 and 1958 honorable mention All-American
  • 1980 F. Morris Touchstone Trophy as the Division I Coach of the Year
  • 1984 Syracuse University Letterman of Distinction
  • First coach to win six NCAA DI National Championships (1983, ’88, ’89,’90, ’93 and ’95)
  • One of two coaches to win three consecutive NCAA Division I National Championships
  • Coached 131 All-Americans and five National Players of the Year
  • 1990 Greater Syracuse Sports Hall of Fame inductee
  • 1991 National Lacrosse Hall of Fame inductee
  • 2009 Spirit of Tewaaraton Award honoree

COURTESY: SU ATHLETICS

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