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Albany Empire add veteran coach to staff

October 10, 2018 02:17 pm

ALBANY — The Albany Empire announced that two-time ArenaBowl champion, Dave Ewart, will join the coaching staff for the 2019 season as Director of Player Personnel and Line Coach.

Ewart has coached on eight different teams over a span of two decades in the Arena Football League.

“I have been fortunate enough to be around this league for a long time,” Ewart said. “I’ve had many great battles in Albany over the years and have heard so many great things about what the organization is doing. When I got the call from Coach Keefe, it brought back the fire to get back at it!”

Albany brings back fond memories for Ewart as he picked up his first ever win as a head coach in the Arena League here in the Capital Region at the helm of the St. Louis Stampede.

The veteran skipper began his coaching career in college football at both East Tennessee State and Glenville State College before making his way into the AFL as a Defensive and Offensive Coordinator with the Cleveland Thunderbolts in 1994. Ewart was a member of the Tampa Bay coaching staff in 2003 when he won his first ArenaBowl Championship, with his second championship coming 11 years later as a member of the Arizona Rattlers.

“The experience that Dave brings to the Empire and his rapport with the players are unparalleled,” said Rob Keefe, Head Coach of the Albany Empire. “We now have three ArenaBowl winning head coaches on our staff. Dave brings a wealth of knowledge to the team and compliments the culture that we are trying to build within the organization both on and off the field.”

The Empire also announce that two coaches from the 2018 inaugural season, Chris Thompson and Beau Bell, will not be returning to the Empire in 2019.

Most recently, Ewart served as the Assistant Head Coach of the Jacksonville Sharks of the National Arena League during the 2018 season. The Sharks finished the season with a 10-6 record and boasted multiple league awards, including Assistant Coach of the Year won by Ewart.

Ewart’s defense produced five All-NAL players, including the Defensive Player of the Year and the league’s Most Improved Player.

“Coach Keefe and Coach Moss are experienced guys who understand the game,” Ewart said. “There are a lot of intricate things in coaching that you can only learn by experiencing them. We have the potential to win a lot of games and bring a championship back to Albany.”