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Joe Amplo was named the first head coach in Marquette men's lacrosse history on Feb. 4, 2011.
Amplo guided the Golden Eagles to a 5-8 record in Marquette's first-ever season of men's lacrosse in 2013, which included a three-game winning streak in April. In its inaugural season, Marquette defeated Air Force, Mercer, High Point, Detroit and Bellarmine. The Golden Eagles win at Air Force came in just the second game of the first-year program. Marquette finished the 2013 season with a national ranking of No. 19 in shooting rate and No. 18 in ground ball margin.
Amplo's third season as head coach marked Marquette's first year of BIG EAST competition. The Golden Eagles, who played the No. 14 toughest schedule in 2014 according to Inside Lacrosse, picked up their first win against Amplo's alma mater Hofstra. Hofstra was ranked as high as No. 12/11 nationally this season. Marquette posted a 4-2 conference record that included overtime wins over St. John's and Georgetown and finished second overall in the BIG EAST to earn MU's first ever postseason appearance. For his leadership, Amplo was named 2014 BIG EAST Coach of the Year. Marquette finished the regular season with a record of 6-9.
Under Amplo's direction, four Marquette players garnered All-BIG EAST recognition in 2014, including redshirt sophomore B.J. Grill, who was the only defenseman unanimously selected to the First Team. Grill was joined on the First Team by attackman Tyler Melnyk, who also earned a USILA All-America Honorable Mention after scoring 36 goals and tallying 51 points in 2014.
Amplo came to Marquette with 11 years of collegiate coaching experience, 10 of which came at his alma mater, Hofstra University. He served as associate head coach with the Pride for three years, and was the team's defensive coordinator.
During his time at Hofstra, Amplo participated in 11 NCAA Championships, three as a student-athlete and eight as a coach, the most recent of which came in 2011. That year, Hofstra had the nation's No. 1 defense, boasting the lowest goals against average in the country.
"Joe's story of non-recruited walk-on to all-conference performer will serve as an inspiration to future Marquette men's lacrosse student-athletes," said Mike Broeker, Deputy Athletic Director and sport administrator for men's lacrosse. "While better understanding his ideals and values, it became quite evident Joe was the ideal person to build our program. Those who know him best talked of an excellent lacrosse coach and skill developer, but more importantly characterized him as family man of great integrity; a selfless teammate who displayed tremendous work ethic and perseverance; and an educator committed to being more than just a coach to the young men in his program. We are so pleased to welcome Joe and his family to Marquette."
Amplo joined the Hofstra coaching staff as a graduate assistant in 1999 and remained with the University until 2001 when he took an assistant coaching position at the University of Pennsylvania. After one year at Penn, Amplo returned to Long Island where he remained through the 2011 season.
"I am extremely grateful to be chosen as the first head men's lacrosse coach at Marquette University," Amplo said. "I have dreamed about the opportunity to lead a Division I lacrosse program and after better understanding, and seeing first-hand, Marquette's commitment to lacrosse, I realized quickly this was the perfect opportunity to pursue. I am blessed to have been mentored by some incredible people throughout my career, individuals who taught me to work hard, believe in myself, be accountable and always do the right thing. This decision was easy once I realized members of the Marquette community embody those same ideals.It truly is the perfect fit for me and my family."
In his first stint with Hofstra, Amplo worked under then-head coach John Danowski, now the coach of 2010 and 2013 NCAA Champion Duke University.
Since his return to Hofstra in 2003, the Pride has posted a 76-49 record and advanced to five NCAA Championships. He has coached 53 all-conference players at Hofstra, including five conference players of the year, four rookies of the year and 21 all-Americans. One of those players, Doug Shannahan, earned the Tewaaraton Award in 2001, honoring the top player in college lacrosse. Amplo has also coached another Tewaaraton Award finalist in Chris Unterstein, 13 North-South All-Stars and six USILA Scholar All-Americans.
As a student-athlete, he was an All-America East performer as a senior in 1999 when he started all 16 games and led the school to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship. He played in 58 games in his career and notched 91 ground balls, 40 of which came during his senior season.
In addition to his work with Hofstra, Amplo is active on the lecture circuit and is the founder of the Golden Eagle Lacrosse Club, which operates clinics, camps and competitive club teams for the Milwaukee area lacrosse community.
The Farmingville, N.Y., native attended Sachem High School in Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y., where he earned four letters in both lacrosse and football and was an all-conference performer in both sports.
Amplo graduated from Hofstra in 2000 with a bachelor's degree in geography and earned a master's degree from the University in college student counseling. He and his wife, Jennifer, reside in Cedarburg, Wis. and have three daughters, Sophia, Charlotte, and Lily.
What others are saying about Joe Amplo...
Seth Tierney, head coach at Hofstra University:
Bill Tierney, six-time NCAA champion and current head coach at University of Denver:
Dave Cottle, consultant to Marquette University and former head coach at Loyola (Md.) and Maryland:
John Danowski, 2010 NCAA champion and head coach at Duke University:
Jon Jiloty, editor of Inside Lacrosse magazine:
Joe Amplo's Coaching Experience