Baltimore Brigade Head Coach Omarr Smith announced today the team’s full coaching staff for the 2018 season, including Walt Housman, Cedric Walker, James Roe and Scott Bailey. The group’s combined resume includes over 30 years of coaching experience and a combined 15 ArenaBowl titles.
“Retaining the majority of our staff from last season will provide a sense of familiarity and continuity that should pay dividends on game day,” Smith said. “We are thrilled to add Coach Walker’s experience to the group. He will make an immediate and measurable impact to a defensive unit that we are extremely confident in.”
Smith, named to the Arena Football Hall of Fame for his storied playing career, enters his second season as the Brigade’s head coach. Baltimore qualified for the playoffs in the team’s inaugural season, falling to the eventual-champion Philadelphia Soul in the semifinals. Prior to joining the Brigade coaching staff, Smith spent one season (2016) as the head coach of the LA KISS, earning a home playoff appearance after finishing second in the National Conference. As an assistant coach, Smith won an ArenaBowl title with the Arizona Rattlers in 2012 and 2013 and the San Jose SaberCats in 2015. Smith won Assistant Coach of the Year in 2013 with the Arizona Rattlers.
During his nine-year playing career, Smith won four ArenaBowl titles (2002, 2003, 2004, 2007) and finished his career with 35 interceptions, 88 pass break-ups and eight defensive touchdowns. The Torrance, California native graduated from San Jose State University and is tied for second on the school’s career interceptions list with 13.
Housman returns as assistant head coach and has over 16 years of coaching experience in the AFL, including last season with the Brigade. Houseman spent the 2016 season alongside Smith in Los Angeles. In 2006, he served as defensive coordinator for the ArenaBowl-champion Chicago Rush. Before moving to the sidelines, Housman played for the AFL’s New York Knights, Denver Dynamite and New Orleans Night.
Walker, who will lead the defense as defensive coordinator, boasts nearly 20 years of arena football experience, including ten years as a player (Charlotte, Orlando, Arizona, Albany, Chicago, Austin, Las Vegas) and nine as a coach (Bakersfield, Everett, Tri-Cities, Green Bay, Milwaukee, San Jose), including the last six seasons of his coaching career as a defensive coordinator. Walker won ArenaBowl XXVIII as defensive coordinator of the San Jose SaberCats in 2015 and ArenaBowl XI as a player with the Arizona Rattlers in 1997.
Roe enters his second seasons as the Brigade’s offensive coordinator. During his playing career, Roe won three ArenaBowl titles (2002, 2004, 2007), all with the San Jose SaberCats. He earned All-Ironman Team honors in 2003, 2004, and 2005 and was named Ironman of the Game following San Jose’s ArenaBowl win in 2004. Roe spent three years as a member of the Baltimore Ravens.
Bailey, in his second season as the Brigade’s special teams coordinator, brings extensive player personnel experience to the team. He, along with Housman, helped the Chicago Rush win the ArenaBowl Championship in 2006. Bailey was later promoted as the team’s assistant special teams coach. Prior to joining the Brigade, Bailey also spent time on the LA KISS coaching staff.
The 2018 Brigade regular season, presented by MedStar Health, kicks off in Baltimore, Md., on Fri., April 13, when the Brigade host the Washington Valor at 7 p.m. at Royal Farms Arena. Following their season opener, the Brigade travel to Philadelphia on Sat., April 21 for a Week 2 matchup with the defending-champion Soul, a rematch of last season’s semifinal matchup.