BALTIMORE, Aug. 27, 2012 — US Lacrosse today announced two-time Super Bowl coach Dick Vermeil will deliver the keynote address at the 2013 US Lacrosse National Convention, presented by Champion. Vermeil, who coached the Philadelphia Eagles to the NFC championship in 1979 and the St. Louis Rams to the NFL title 20 years later, will kick off the lacrosse world’s largest educational and networking event at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 11, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.
"I want to thank US Lacrosse for giving me the opportunity to speak with coaches, officials and other administrators who shape the development of young people in lacrosse," Vermeil said. "My grandson, Tommy, played lacrosse at Gettysburg College, so I’ve been able to follow the growth of the sport across the country. I’m looking forward to being a part of the US Lacrosse National Convention."
"We are thrilled to welcome Coach Vermeil back to his adopted hometown of Philadelphia to deliver the keynote address at our national convention," said Beth Porreca, director of special events at US Lacrosse. "His experience, values and passion make him ideal to reach our coaches, officials and administrators with an inspiring, educational message that they can take back to their local lacrosse programs as the 2013 season gets underway."
Vermeil reached the pinnacle of coaching in the NFL both before and after a 15-year career in the sports broadcasting booth for ABC and CBS in the 1980s and ‘90s. In 1997, the Rams hired Vermeil as head coach. In his third season, a 63-year-old Vermeil led the Rams to victory in Super Bowl XXXIV over the Tennessee Titans. The championship helped Vermeil win his second NFL Coach of the Year award, as he had done 20 years earlier with the Eagles. Hired by Philadelphia prior to the 1976 season, he had the Eagles in the playoffs in 1978. A year later, helped by defensive back and 2012 US Lacrosse National Convention keynote speaker Herm Edwards, Vermeil guided Philadelphia to a win over the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Championship Game and into the franchise’s first Super Bowl.
Vermeil served as head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs in 2001-05, taking them to the AFC Western Division championship in 2003. He finished his NFL coaching career with a 126-114 record. Prior to his first head-coaching position in the NFL, Vermeil took UCLA to a share of the Pac-8 Conference championship in 1975 and win over top-ranked Ohio State in the Rose Bowl. He was 15-5-3 in two years at UCLA, which followed multiple assistant coaching positions in the NFL. Vermeil played quarterback at San Jose State University and graduated from there in 1959.
Since retiring from the NFL, Vermeil, who was born in Calistoga, Calif., has founded Vermeil Wines. He remains involved in the Chester County (Pa.) Council Boy Scouts of America. Vermeil was portrayed by actor Greg Kinnear in the 2006 film "Invincible," which told the story of Vince Papale, a high school teacher who earned a walk-on spot on the Vermeil-coached Eagles teams of the late 1970s.
The US Lacrosse National Convention, presented by Champion, annually draws upwards of 5,000 participants, and it includes two live demonstration fields, approximately 150 educational sessions, and the US Lacrosse Fan Fest, a portion of events open to the public and centered around the sport’s largest exposition hall.
Convention registration for members of US Lacrosse begins Sept. 4 for the early-bird price of $85 at www.uslacrosse.org/2013convention. Like the convention at facebook.com/uslnationalconvention and follow on Twitter at twitter.com/uslaxconvention (#laxcon).