Boys' Latin lacrosse coach Bob Shriver, who led the Lakers to an undefeated season and the No. 1 national ranking this spring in his 35th season, announced Thursday that he will retire from coaching after the 2015 season.
Shriver, a Boys' Latin graduate, cited an increasing workload that includes offseason duties and helping players with college recruitment as the main reason behind his decision to retire.
He agreed to stay on another year to facilitate the transition and will continue to teach at Boys' Latin, where he just completed 39 years as an educator.
The new Lakers coach will have a lot to live up to.
Shriver, 63, led the Lakers to six Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference championships and three undefeated seasons. This past spring, the Lakers won the A Conference and finished 18-0, which earned Shriver All-Metro Coach of the Year honors. He has a 490-135 record since 1980.
Shriver, who described his announcement as "bittersweet," said there's never a "perfect time" to step down, but he felt the time had come.
"As you get older, ironically the work load as it relates to coaching has only increased every year," Shriver said. "It doesn't decrease because of kids wanting to go to colllege and working on the scheduling and work in the offseason and talking to kids about coming here. I've always tried my absolute best to help anybody in the game of lacrosse that wants to ask me some questions about it.
"Whether it's a coaching question -- I certainly don't have all the answers," he said with a laugh, "but I'm always willing to try to help people. I'll go out and talk to kids, I'll talk to programs and I'll speak at clinics, so when you add all that into the mix, it's just a lot of work and 40 years, which next year will be, that's an awful long time."
Boys' Latin Headmaster Christopher Post thanked Shriver for his dedication to the students and the school over his career.
"It's impossible to try and encapsulate the contribution Bob's made over four decades of coaching," Post said. "I think what's most important is that Bob's a teacher and a coach. He's a member of our faculty and boys' experiences have always been at the center of what he does.
"I think athletics is about teaching life lessons and the experience that Bob has proviided for generations of young men here at Boys' Latin is exemplary and it's unprecedented."
Post said the search for a new coach will begin this fall and that Shriver agreeing to stay on will make the transition much smoother for his successor. Shriver agreed.
"For me personally," Shriver said, "I would have preferred to do it at the end of next year, so I don't become a distraction for the kids that play lacrosse for BL, because I really don't think that's fair, but when you look at it realistically, if we have all this time between now and then for BL to name a coach, [it gives] us -- that person and me -- the opportunity to make this transition an easy one.
"Having this descend on somebody next May 20 doesn't really make logistical sense. I think the school thought this was the best thing to do and I obviously agree."
Although there have been many highlights over the years, Shriver said the best part of coaching the Lakers has been working with the so many players and so many different teams.
There is one year that stands out, however: 2006.
"I'd be stupid if I didn't say one of my great highlights was when my son, David, played lacrosse at BL and his senior year, with all his friends that he grew up with at BL that I got to know not just as lacrosse players, we had a similar magical season," Shriver said. "We were undefeated and won the championship. That's clearly something that I will never forget, obviously, to have the opportunity to coach your son and all his friends and have the kind of year we did in '06."
Shriver said retirement will give him a chance to watch his son coach at Penn State, where David Shriver is director of operations for the Nittany Lions men's lacrosse team and coaches the offense.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun