Tucker Kear, who just finished his sixth season on the men’s lacrosse staff at Union College, has been hired to lead the Bard College men’s lacrosse program.
His new title will be Assistant Athletic Director/Head Men’s Lacrosse Coach, according to Bard sports officials.
“We’re very excited to have Tucker Kear join the staff,” said Kristen Hall, Bard’s Director of Athletics, in a news release on the announcement. “This is a huge step for our athletic program. He will benefit not only athletics, but the Bard College community as well.”
“It’s something I’ve worked toward for a long time, to get this opportunity,” Kear said. “It is the dream of every coach to put his own stamp on a program, and in this case we’re going to build it from the ground up. It’s a dream come true and I couldn’t be more excited.”
After the 2011 season, Kear received the Division III Outstanding Assistant Coach Award from the Intercollegiate Men’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IMLCA), a national honor given to one coach in each NCAA division annually. He was promoted from Assistant Coach to Associate Head Coach at Union before the 2012 season. He had been an Assistant Coach there for five years.
Legendary Union Head Coach Paul Wehrum, a member of the U.S. Lacrosse Hall of Fame, is quoted in Kear’s biography on Union’s web site: “Coach Kear has been the key to our outstanding recruiting classes … Tucker is one of the hardest working and most dedicated coaches I have ever had the pleasure to work with in my almost 40 years as a college coach.”
Led by Wehrum and Kear, Union won its first-ever Liberty League title in 2011, and advanced to the NCAA Tournament in back-to-back seasons (2011 & 2012). Bard joined the Liberty League last fall.
Bard put its men’s lacrosse program on hold after one varsity season in 2010. So sports officials are hoping that Kear will start over: He’ll have one year to recruit, and then men’s lacrosse will restart in spring of 2014.
“If I have a message for recruits, it would be that we’re going to put academics first, we’re going to play fast and we’re going to compete,” Kear said. “When you get down to the nuts and bolts of it, this isn’t rocket science. We’re going to get players in here and raise the level to compete in this league.”
A native of South Salem, N.Y., Kear played high school lacrosse at John Jay-Cross River, where his father, Bob Kear, pioneered the lacrosse program and built it from a club team into a respected state and regional power that has produced several Div. I players. Tucker went on to play Div. I lacrosse at the University of Massachusetts before transferring and finishing his playing career at Butler University.
“We’re confident that with his experience as a coach and an avid recruiter, we will build a program that can compete in the very tough Liberty League,” Hall said.