Rampage Introduce Ante Cop as New Head Coach

by Sydney Nusinov

The Cedar Rapids Rampage introduced Ante Cop (AHN-tay CHOPE) as their new Head Coach. Cop replaces Jonathan Greenfield, who coached the team’s first seven games, while General Manager Chris Kokalis served as interim coach the last three games. Cop will be on the Rampage bench when they host the Baltimore Blast this Sunday at 3:05pm at the US Cellular Center.

Cop, 43, split time as a goalkeeper and a field player during his indoor playing career, which included stints with the Arizona Thunder, Rockford Rampage, and Chicago Riot. Cop served as an assistant coach with the Rockford Rampage, as well as Robert Morris and Ball State. He also coached club soccer teams in Milwaukee and Chicago. Cop is already well acquainted with many of the Rampage players, six of whom he has previously coached.

“Ante is a veteran of the indoor game,” said Kokalis.  “He’s very passionate, has great coaching experience and he was someone who was very familiar with members of our squad.”

“As someone who has aspired to coach at the pro level since I was a kid and all the while as a player in the various pro leagues I played in, I was excited for this opportunity to accept the head coaching position with Cedar Rapids,” said Cop. “I have been watching this organization's improvement since its inception and, with a roster full of players I coached in college and at the amateur level back in Chicago, this was a perfect fit.

“I want to bring a high intensity type of soccer to Cedar Rapids that will incorporate players’ individual talents around a team concept. I believe the pieces are there to challenge for an Eastern Conference title and the ultimate goal of a Newman Cup title.

 “I want the soccer fans of Cedar Rapids to know that our club will play with passion, heart and as a family. Together, we hope to bring all of you a lot of victories in the next two months or so. I look forward to seeing as many of you at the arena as possible,” Cop concluded.