Armour’s alright facing alma mater in opener
JU assistant coach Brock Armour, left, warms up a goalie before a recent practice.
JU assistant coach Brock Armour, left, warms up a goalie before a recent practice.
JU assistant men’s lacrosse coach Brock Armour has every reason to have a stomach full of butterflies Saturday and not only because it is his college coaching debut.

Sure, Armour will be on the college sidelines for the first time, but the Dolphins’ matchup with Towson (1 p.m. at D. B. Milne Field) has a little extra kick. It was only two years ago he finished a four-year career playing for the Tigers and much of the current staff.

Despite some bantering with some of his former teammates and classmates, Armour said he has tried to not let any feelings interfere.

“I really haven’t thought about it too much,’’ he said. “We have been really focused on putting together our game plan. I’m more concerned with our execution rather than my feelings toward the Tigers.’’

Nonetheless, there’s little doubt he is fond of his old stomping grounds and especially Towson’s first-year head coach Shawn Nadelan, who was an assistant when Armour played.

“I’ve become good friends with him and he is someone I respect and admire,’’ Armour said. “He’s not only a good coach but a good man and I wish him and his family the best.’’

Likewise, Nadelan can’t say anything bad about his former player.

“He was the consummate teammate,’’ Nadelan said Friday after the team bus pulled onto the JU campus for a late afternoon workout. “He got on the field a lot because of what he brought to the team. He always lifted the team.’’

The irony of the situation isn’t lost on Armour.

“It is a bit ironic to say the least,’’ Armour, from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, said. “Having a chance to play your alma mater is special. I never actually thought I would be in this position at my age, but I’ve been fortunate enough to get the chance and we, as a staff, are going to make the best of our opportunity.’’

The banter this week, according to Armour, was expected but has been good natured. Among those with whom he has been trading barbs with is his former roommate, Tigers’ senior captain Carl Iaconna.

“I’m laughing slightly about the bantering,’’ Armour said. “We (he and Iaconna) have exchanged a couple messages, but nothing to write home about. It has been more so with alumni, but it’s all I good fun.’’

The fun will end for a couple of hours Saturday at 1, but after that Armour will get back to his fondness for the school.

“I knew the day I walked on campus it would be a life changing experience and the day I left as a young man I knew the experiences changed me for the better,’’ he said. “I loved my time at Towson and I have nothing but positive things to say about the school and its athletic program.’’

The game will be video streamed on with Ray Carnicelli and Celita Gorman calling the action.

- Jim Nasella