Manitta is Manhattan's Man

Non-copyright infringing image of new Manhattan coach Steve Manitta wearing a Napoleon hat while dancing and showing off his favorite sunshine t-shirt.

It's official:

  1. Division I men's college lacrosse is now without head coaching vacancies going into the 2012-2013 season.
  2. I didn't fill one of the open positions.

I'm not sure what I need to do to get a head coaching job in Division I lacrosse. I sent open invitations to all these schools to hire me, laying out my qualifications (of which there were none) and interest in the jobs (of which there was truly very little). It's like these schools don't make hires based on the circumstance of owning a whistle. That's a crock of bull, if I do say so myself.

Anyway, Manhattan, after kicking off the cavalcade of head coaching changes this year, finally hired someone to make the school's lacrosse players run wind sprints: Mercy's Steve Manitta. As usual, the Jaspers' athletic director is very excited and expects big things and so on and so forth:

"Coach Manitta impressed me as a 'can-do' coach with an excellent record of rapidly improving programs he takes over," Manhattan Athletic Director Bob Byrnes said. "He is extremely positive and enjoys an excellent reputation among other lacrosse coaches, which is invaluable in recruiting student-athletes to Manhattan. I feel fortunate to have Steve join us and know his impact will be very positive with the players."

Manitta, who looks very serious in his biographical profile picture (and appears to really want to sell you that life insurance policy that you've been dodging him about), isn't exactly a cat with tons of Division I coaching experience. Prior to his appointment at Division II Mercy, Manitta spent about 15 years in the New Jersey high school ranks coaching both Chatham High and Roxbury. At Mercy, he was charged with starting the program, building it up from scratch and laying the foundation for his three years as Chief Maverick (Coaching Division). Other than that, Manitta had been involved in putting together some all star teams and generally shoveling the smelly stuff that lots of coaches need to deal with as they start to climb the ladder.

This isn't going to be an easy spot for Manitta to succeed. The institution's support for the program has been, at best, spotty and the Jaspers haven't overcome that on the field. This is, in essence, another ground-up building process for Manitta and his experience at Mercy as a founding father should help in his quest. If I was in Manitta's shoes I don't know if I take this job, but for a first-time head coach with little Division I exposure, this isn't a terrible spot for both the new head man and Manhattan.

Regardless, good luck to the new head coach.

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