The Richmond Raiders have re-signed Head Coach James Fuller for the 2014 professional indoor football season. Fuller led the Raiders to back-to-back appearances in the PIFL Championship Game in each of the last two seasons, and has guided the team to a league-best 13-1 record at home during that span.
“I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to coach in Richmond for another season,” Fuller said. “My goal is to bring a championship to our organization and city.” Despite injuries at key positions throughout the 2013 season, Fuller led the Raiders to second place in the PIFL standings with a 7-5 regular season record. “I thought we had a productive year, especially with the injuries to every part of our team,” he said.
The Raiders closed out the 2013 regular season with a 5-1 home record and hosted the Lehigh Valley SteelHawks in a semifinal playoff game. The Raiders fell behind by 15 points early, but Fuller rallied his troops to a 44-40 victory. “I am proud that we made it to the championship, especially with the new talent in the league. I am proud of the players and the hard work they put in, it’s not easy to play for a title in back to back years,” he said.
2014 will mark Fuller’s fourth season as the Raiders’ head coach. Since 2012, his players have earned 21 Player of the Week awards, 14 All-Pro selections (including eight first-teamers), and a Most Valuable Player honor. Fuller was named PIFL Coach of the Year following the 2012 season. But rather than resting on his laurels, Fuller acknowledges that playing in the championship game “doesn’t mean much if you don’t win it.
“In 2014, I’ll be looking for a more focused team, on all sides of the ball. We have to get back to creating turnovers on defense and protecting the ball on offense. The competition in the league is getting better from year to year, so we gotta step up our game.”
Fuller led the Raiders to a 10-2 regular season record in 2012, which tied for first place in the PIFL. Under Fuller’s guidance, the Raiders beat every team in the league at least once, and went a perfect 7-0 at home including the playoffs. Fuller led the team to its first ever postseason berth, beating the Louisiana Swashbucklers in the PIFL semifinal before falling to the Albany Panthers in the championship game. The Raiders had the #1 scoring offense and the #2 scoring defense in the league, scoring over 60 points per game and allowing just 49.
Fuller is 25-15 overall (including playoffs) with the Raiders in three seasons, having led them to a 6-6 record his first year in Richmond in 2011. That year ended with a division championship, but no playoff appearance. He has a 46-42-1 record in six years as head coach in indoor/arena football, including interim stints.
2014 will mark Fuller’s 14th season as a professional indoor football coach. In 2010 he was the Defensive Coordinator for the Dallas Vigilantes of the Arena Football League (AFL). He finished the season as the team’s interim Head Coach. Prior to that Fuller served three years with the Dallas Desperados of the AFL—as a wide receiver / defensive back coach in his first year, and as defensive coordinator in 2007-2008. During that stretch, the Desperados achieved a 40-8 record in three regular seasons, winning two divisional titles. Fuller broke into the AFL in 2004 with the Philadelphia Soul as defensive coordinator. His squad that year was number one in defense against the pass. He returned to Philly in 2005 and was made interim Head Coach after the fifth game of the season. Fuller was Head Coach of the Bakersfield Blitz (af2) in 2002-2003, winning the Western Conference championship in 2002. Prior to that he was the Associate Head Coach and Defensive Coordinator for the Portland/Oklahoma franchise (AFL) in 1999-2000.
Fuller is a native of Tacoma, Washington and holds a degree in criminal justice from Portland State University, where he was a two-time All American safety. He was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in 1992 and played on that team for three seasons. Fuller also played for the Scotland Claymores, and in 1996 led NFL-Europe in interceptions. He finished his NFL career with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1996.
2014 season tickets are now on sale starting at just $35 via on the Raiders’ website, www.RichmondRaidersProFootball.com, and the Raiders’ ticket hotline at 804-780-0430. 2014 will mark the Raiders’ fifth season of professional indoor football in the Richmond Coliseum, and third in the Professional Indoor Football League (PIFL). The team has reached the league’s championship game in each of the last two seasons and has the league’s best home record (13-1) over that span.
THE FULLER FILE
AS HEAD COACH
|2013||Richmond Raiders||PIFL||7-5||d. Lehigh Valley (PIFL Semis)||l. Alabama (PIFL Champ)|
|2012||Richmond Raiders||PIFL||10-2||d. Louisiana (PIFL Semis)||l. Albany (PIFL Champ)|
|2003||Bakersfield Blitz||af2||8-7-1||l. Arkansas (1st round)|
|2002||Bakersfield Blitz||af2||9-7||l. San Diego (1st round)|
AS ASSISTANT COACH
|2010||Dallas Vigilantes||AFL||Defensive Coordinator||1-5|
|2008||Dallas Desperados||AFL||Defensive Coordinator||12-4, 0-1 (playoffs)|
|2007||Dallas Desperados||AFL||Defensive Coordinator||15-1, 0-1 (playoffs)|
|2006||Dallas Desperados||AFL||WR/DB Coach||13-3, 1-1 (playoffs)|
|2005||Philadelphia Soul||AFL||Defensive Coordinator||2-3|
|2004||Philadelphia Soul||AFL||Defensive Coordinator||5-11|
|2000||Oklahoma Wranglers||AFL||Associate HC/Def. Coord||7-7, 1-1 (playoffs)|
|1999||Portland Forest Dragons AFL||Associate HC/Def. Coord||7-7|
|TOTAL||Eight years||62-41, 2-4 (playoffs)|
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