Regina football coach hired at McMaster University
REGINA -- After years of rejection, a Regina football coach has been hired for a job she’s been chasing for years.
Amanda Ruller has been hired as a full-time running backs coach with the McMaster University Marauders football team.
“It’s almost been I would say 10 years that I’ve been trying to push for something like this, even asking to volunteer,” Ruller said.
In 2019, Ruller was the speed coach for the Regina Rams football team. Before that, she worked one-on-one with players, working on agility.
“It’s been very challenging because I’ve been told no so many times, just because for me, it was because of my gender. I was told that to my face,” Ruller said.
Previously, Ruller played with the LA Temptation in the Lingerie Football League. Then in 2017, the former running back won a silver medal at the Women’s Football World Championships representing Team Canada.
In July, Ruller was invited by Tom Brady’s agent, Don Yee, to coach at an NFL free agency camp in San Diego.
“It’s hard to say but people are starting to trust (women) more in the industry and I think that that’s huge,” Ruller said. “I love that going forward as a woman, because that inspires me to push because I see a potential opportunity for myself.”
The 33-year-old has worked with CFL players like Charleston Hughes and Makena Henry.
“Even CFL men are messaging me saying thank you so much for coaching me, I’m so excited for your position going forward,” Ruller said.
The Marauders football team recognized a gender gap in coaching and added two women, Ruller and wide receivers coach Taylor MacIntyre, to their coaching staff. Both women are highly qualified.
“The respect that they garner and how they interact with our peer group in the coaches room, I think is going to influence how student athletes at McMaster see women,” Stefan Ptaszek, the Marauders head coach, said. “(Ruller’s) athleticism, her explosiveness and her energy are just a few of the things we’ve already seen.”
Ruller’s ultimate goal is to land a full-time job coaching a CFL team. Riders head coach Craig Dickenson has already taken note.
At a press conference, Ruller, who also works part-time as a sports broadcaster, asked the CFL coach a question and he responded, “Did you not take a coaching job? Congratulations on that by the way!”
Those actions and gestures make Ruller believe she’s on the right path.
“I want to work hard so that I could earn that and getting (Dickenson’s) respect, his trust, just saying ‘hey coach’ shows me that that could be possible,” Ruller said.