Colorado Springs, Colo. (Jan. 5, 2017) – Coaches for the men’s, mixed and women’s national teams that will compete at the 2017 World Championships of Beach Ultimate were announced today after careful consideration by the team managers and USA Ultimate staff.
Bryan Jones (men’s), Eileen Murray (mixed) and Mike Whitaker (women’s) will help lead the U.S. National Teams in their pursuit of gold medals this summer.
Jones has been involved as a coach at all levels of ultimate for the past five years. He has coached at local youth clinics in the Albany area as well as several college teams and in the men’s club division with New York PoNY. After coaching SUNY-Buffalo and SUNY-Geneseo at the D-III level, he took over the helm at the University of Connecticut in fall 2015 and led them to their first-ever appearance at the D-I College Championships last spring.
Murray has been a part of the ultimate community for more than 20 years. A longtime member of Atlanta Ozone, Murray has also competed with several mixed and women’s masters teams during her career. She has coached at nearly every level of the sport – high school, college and club, as well as serving as head coach for the bronze-medal-winning U.S. Girls’ National Team at the 2008 World Junior Ultimate Championships.
Whitaker played college ultimate at Stanford University and led the team to a national championship in 2002 before joining Boulder’s Johnny Bravo in the club division. He went on to coach the University of Colorado women’s team for four years before leading Denver Molly Brown in the club division. He has also earned one gold and one silver medal as the head coach of the 2013 and 2015 U-24 U.S. Women’s National Teams.
The 2017 World Championships of Beach Ultimate, hosted by the World Flying Disc Federation, will be held in Royan, France, June 18-24. The event will serve as a qualifying event for the 2019 Association of National Olympic Committees’ (ANOC) World Beach Games, ultimate’s first true Olympic event.
Rosters for the seven teams that will represent the U.S. at the biannual event were announced in November.