Codd hooks career with Alberta minor lacrosse

WES GILBERTSON

, Last Updated: 6:13 AM ET

It wasn't long ago Bruce Codd could only daydream about translating his passion for lacrosse into a full-time job.

Now that he's collecting a paycheque from the Alberta Lacrosse Association, though, the former grocery store clerk confirms it "certainly beats cleaning up spills in Aisle 6."

"It's very exciting working in lacrosse," Codd said. "Not many guys get to do that."

The Calgary Roughnecks defender relocated from Orangeville, Ont., to the Stampede City about three weeks ago to take over as technical director for the minor lacrosse organization, leaving behind his family, girlfriend and a grocery store gig he'd held since even before he cracked a professional roster in 2000.

"I was able to not do a whole lot of thinking on my feet (in the grocery store), you know?" said Codd, whose squad hosts the Rochester Knighthawks tomorrow (7 p.m., Saddledome). "I could let my mind wander about who we were playing that weekend or whatever. It was good that way."

In his new role, the 31-year-old will be paid to think about the sport he loves. His job description includes everything from player and coach development to administrative tasks.

It's a big change from stocking shelves, but Codd also boasts an impressive resume in the lacrosse world. His nine-year National Lacrosse League career has included stops in Calgary, Arizona, Montreal, Ottawa, Columbus and Albany, and he's been coaching amateur teams for the past decade.

In August, Codd helped guide the Orangeville Junior A Northmen to a Minto Cup national championship at Max Bell Centre and also won a Mann Cup Senior A championship as a player with the Brampton Excelsiors. An Alberta squad has never claimed a major national crown, but Codd, who'll coach the Okotoks Jr. A Raiders this year, expects that'll change in the near future.

"I think they're knocking on the door of becoming that next Ontario or B.C.," Codd said.

"Obviously, the game isn't quite as estabished out here. In Ontario and B.C., you've got guys who've been involved in the game for generations, families and stuff. Now, I think you're just starting to see the second generation of true Alberta lacrosse people, and I think the game is only going to benefit from that."

Home date on Riggers plate?

With a victory over the Knighthawks and a little help from a couple of division foes, the Roughnecks can clinch the NLL's West Division title this weekend.

The Riggers (9-3) have already secured a post-season berth but can lock up a home playoff date with a win over the K-Hawks (5-6) and a pair of Portland LumberJax losses.

The LumberJax (6-5) visit the Edmonton Rush (4-8) tonight and host the Colorado Mammoth (6-6) tomorrow.


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