Laurier names Faulds new football head coach


January 9, 2013, WATERLOO, Ont (ISN) – The Wilfrid Laurier Department of Athletics and Recreation is proud to announce the appointment of Michael Faulds as the new manager of football operations and head coach of the Golden Hawks effective immediately.

Faulds, who has served as offensive coordinator for the York Lions for the past three seasons, was successfully selected out of a pool of 25 applicants to become the sixth head coach in the 52-year history of the Golden Hawks football program.

“I am very excited about the opportunity that has been given to me,” commented Faulds on his appointment. “Wilfrid Laurier University has a football program with a rich history and tradition and I am honoured to lead the team heading into the future.”

“I would also like to thank Peter Baxter and the entire search committee he assembled,” added Faulds. “As well, I would like to thank everyone at York University, and in particular head coach Warren Craney and Athletic Director Jenn Myers for all their support.”

“We are tremendously proud to announce the appointment of Michael Faulds as our new head coach,” stated Peter Baxter, Wilfrid Laurier’s director of athletics and recreation. “Michael combines maturity in football experience as a player and coach with a leadership style that connects with this generation of student-athletes.”

An offensive-minded coach who enjoyed one of the finest playing careers in Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) history, Faulds has masterminded the rapid succession of a York program that has gone from 26th in the country in yardage per game to seventh in just three seasons. Last year in the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) conference, York ranked third overall in both passing and total yards per game using a no-huddle pro-style offence.

“Michael was the unanimous choice of our search committee, which included six prominent alumni, and since that time has hit the ground running,” added Baxter. “He has reached out to many of our Laurier football alumni, calling to engage them in moving the program forward, something he gained a lot of experience in doing with the York Lions.”

Since moving into the coaching ranks, he has also had great success at the international level. In 2012, he served as the Quarterback Coach for Team Canada at the International Federation of American Football (IFAF) U19 World Championship, helping guide the team to a 23-17 victory over the heavily-favoured American squad in the gold medal game. He is also set to reprise his role of Quarterbacks Coach with Team World after serving with the development team at last year’s International Bowl and has twice been a member of the coaching staff with the West Team at the CIS East West Bowl, held annually to showcase the top Canadian Football League (CFL) recruits in the country.

“Recruiting is the name of the game in the CIS and Michael’s experience at the international level will be a great benefit for our program,” continued Baxter. “He is a transformational leader who is mindful of the emotional and psychological needs of his players.”

A graduate of Western University with both a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Kinesiology, specializing in coaching, Faulds is the owner of two of the most prestigious records in CIS history, including the CIS all-time passing record of 10,811 yards as well as the single season passing record of 3,033 yards, which he set in 2009. That same season he also was named the OUA Most Outstanding Player while guiding the Mustangs to the Yates Cup. He also earned Yates Cup MVP honours in both 2007 and 2008 after leading Western to the OUA championship.

Outside of the CIS, Faulds had a decorated career with Team Canada, serving as the U19 quarterback on three occasions, including 2000, 2002 and 2003. He also guided Canada to a silver medal at the IFAF Senior World Championship in Austria in July, 2011.

Faulds takes over the head coaching duties from Gary Jeffries who stepped away from the program back in November.

Along with Faulds announcement on Tuesday, Wilfrid Laurier Athletics and Recreation also appointed Ron VanMoerkerke as the associate head coach and defensive coordinator of the team.

VanMoerkerke, who has been with the Golden Hawks for the past 12 seasons, including the last nine as the defensive coordinator, will assist Faulds with a number of matters related to the football operations.

“Ron has proven over the past 12 seasons that he is one of the top defensive minds in the country that has a long tradition of success under his leadership,” stated Baxter. “His continuance with the program will compliment Michaels appointment and ensure a smooth transition into our future successes.”