Pittsburgh Forge Women Announce Jason Edsall as Head Coach

Jason Edsall PhD, LAT, ATC, CSCS

PITTSBURGH, PA – The Pittsburgh Forge, the city’s newest and largest rugby club, is pleased to announce that Jason Edall has been hired as the Head Coach for the women’s XV’s program beginning in August 2018.

Jason has nearly 20 years of playing experience at the collegiate and senior club levels. Jason’s playing career began in 1998 while attending Slippery Rock University for his undergraduate degree in Athletic Training. There, Jason predominantly played in the backline. Upon graduation from SRU in 2002, he attended Salisbury University for his Master’s Degree and played in the backline there until 2004. After a short time away from playing, Jason joined the Westmoreland/ Pittsburgh Highlanders in 2008 and played all over the field for the Club for seven years before work took him across the state where he joined the Wilkes Barre Breakers for two years. Finally, upon his return to Pittsburgh in mid – 2017, he once again returned to the Highlanders as a part time player.

In the midst of his playing career, Jason began coaching as an assistant for Salisbury University in August of 2005. While there, he also established and coached the Eastern Shore Sharks Rugby Club, a community based club that offered rugby to boys and girls ages 16 – 18. In 2014, while on staff as a professor at California University of Pennsylvania, he coached the women’s program until his employment moved him to Wilkes Barre, PA. There, he was on the staff for Kings College Men and Women, established collegiate programs at Marywood University and player/coached on his senior club side. In August 2017, upon returning to Pittsburgh, he was hired as the Head Coach of the Pittsburgh Highlander Women and was named the Allegheny Rugby Union’s Men’s Select Side Coach in February 2018. Jason is currently a USA Rugby Level 300 certified coach.

Jason Edsall (center) playing for the Pittsburgh Highlanders in March 2015.

In addition to playing and coaching rugby, Jason also serves the area as a USA Rugby Level 200 certified referee and as the Treasurer of the Allegheny Rugby Union.

Professionally, Jason has worked as both an athletic trainer and professor at a number of different college and universities. In 1998, Jason began working on the medical staff for the Pennsylvania Special Olympics before becoming an Athletic Trainer at Slippery Rock University. In 2002, he worked as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer while attending Salisbury University. That is also where he began his teaching career, instructing a course in Kinesiology as an Adjunct Professor in February 2004. Next, Jason spent three years in Maryland as the Head Athletic Trainer and Strength and Conditioning Coach at Snow Hill High School before returning to Salisbury University as an Adjunct Professor in 2006.

Next, Jason then spent several years at Seton Hill University as an athletic trainer and strength and conditioning coach, while also working at SNAP Fitness as the Head Fitness Professional until 2015. In 2012, he began working at California University of Pennsylvania where he instructed courses and served as an Athletic Trainer before moving to Scranton, PA and becoming the Director of Athletic Training Education at Marywood University. He also served as a professor there. In 2016, Jason earned his PhD in Athletic Training from Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions and was able to move back to Pittsburgh in 2017.

Jason Edsall (far right) graduating with his PhD from Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals.

Jason is currently the Program Director of Athletic Training and Exercise Science at Chatham University where is he also overseeing the development of a varsity men and women’s rugby program to begin in the fall of 2018. Although he has no interest in coaching that program once it’s established, Jason is tasked with finding great coaches to lead that program. This would be the third program that Jason has helped established during his time in rugby.

Jason is extremely excited about joining the Forge coaching staff and assisting the club in the betterment of rugby in the City of Pittsburgh. He looks to cultivate a competitive women’s side that will compete for regional and national championships in the short term. Jason looks to be involved in the Forge’s summer programs and continue to assist the Allegheny Rugby Union’s male select side program.

The Pittsburgh Forge’s Summer 7’s programming begins on Tuesday, May 22 at Phillip Murray Field near Pittsburgh’s Southside. Training will be held every Tuesday and Thursday evening in the City at 7:00 PM.

The club’s XV’s season will begin in August 2018. Any interested women are strongly encouraged to contact the club at PGHForgeRugby@gmail.com.

For more information on Jason, please visit his faculty profile at Chatham University’s website: https://www.chatham.edu/athletic-training/facultydetails.cfm?FacultyID=618