Dawgs extend head coach Dan Bremner's contract

General manager Mickey Gray promoted to team president


ROANOKE, Va. – Courtesy: Rail Yard Dawgs

The Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs announced that the contract of head coach Dan Bremner has been extended by two seasons and will now run through the completion of the 2019-20 campaign. Additionally, general manager Mickey Gray has been promoted to the position of team president.

Bremner was hired to coach the Rail Yard Dawgs on Dec. 18. In 38 games as head coach, he has guided Roanoke to a 21-15-2 record and the first playoff appearance in franchise history. That run was highlighted by an eight-game winning streak that spanned from Feb. 3-23 and was the longest winning streak in the SPHL during the 2017-18 season.

“I’m very pleased to have Dan secured here for another two years,” said Gray. “He did a fantastic job in his first year and I am extremely confident in his abilities to lead this team in the right direction on the ice.”

“It didn’t take long for Dan to earn the respect of our players and fans after he took the reins last season,” said Rail Yard Dawgs principal owner Bob McGinn. “He has earned his contract extension and I am looking forward to watching the Dawgs go to the next level under his command.”

Prior to being hired by the Rail Yard Dawgs, Bremner served as an assistant coach at Ohio University for the beginning of the 2017-18 season. He also spent six seasons playing in the SPHL with the Knoxville Ice Bears, Columbus Cottonmouths and Peoria Rivermen, where he served as captain for his final two seasons. In addition to his coaching role, Bremner will continue to serve as the director of hockey operations.

“I’m extremely excited and grateful for the vote of confidence from Mickey and the owners,” said Bremner. “The support from the fans and the community was incredible this past season and will be huge in helping us build something special in the Roanoke Valley.” 

Gray has been in charge of business operations since being hired as the vice president of the team early in 2016. He later took on the title of general manager during the 2016-17 season.

In his new position, Gray will continue to head up the business operations of the team and serve on the league’s Board of Governors. 

“Mickey has proven himself not only to me but to our entire ownership group over the last two and a half years,” said McGinn. “His skills have been essential in assembling and guiding a front office staff that is one of the best-run groups in the entire SPHL. Mickey’s continued strong leadership is of great value to our team.”

“I want to thank the McGinns and the local owners for the opportunity to take on the president role,” said Gray. “From day one, they’ve given me and the team everything we need to be a success.

“Roanoke is a fantastic hockey market and has begun to feel like home to me. I’m excited for the future with the Rail Yard Dawgs.” 

McGinn will continue to serve as principal owner of the team and its parent company, Breakaway Sports and Entertainment, LLC. He will also continue his role as the chairman of the SPHL’s Coaches Committee as well as supplying input to the operation and development of the Lancerlot Sports Complex, in which the team has a minority ownership stake.