The search for the Iowa Barnstormers newest head coach is over, the team announced on Thursday, as they have hired Ameer Ismail to take the reins in Des Moines.
Ismail becomes the eighth head coach in Iowa Barnstormers history and will follow the most successful coaching stint the team has seen in Dixie Wooten.
Ameer Ismail hired as newest Iowa Barnstormers Coach
The former NFL and arena league player brings experience from all over the place, including stints with the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs and Jacksonville Jaguars as well as the AFL’s Jacksonville Sharks (Pre-NAL) and a plethora of IFL teams.
“It is such an amazing honor to be named the new Head Coach of the Iowa Barnstormers, the most prestigious and historic team in all of indoor or arena football,” Ismail said in a press release from the team. “[Barnstormers Vice President and COO] John Pettit and I have known each other and maintained a great relationship over the years despite being on different teams or even in different leagues.”
Ismail started off his coaching career with assistant roles in the IFL in 2014. He spent time with the Cedar Rapids Titans, Tri-Cities Fever, and Spokane Empire.
In 2017, Ismail took his first head coaching job with the Champion Indoor Football league’s Bloomington Edge, where he would lead his team to a 7-6 record and a berth in the CIF Playoffs.
The next year, Ismail packed up shop and accepted the head coaching position for the newly formed Massachusetts Pirates in the east coast’s National Arena League.
There, Ismail led his team to an 11-6 record and another berth in the playoffs. He was also named NAL Coach of the Year during that time.
In 2019 Ismail took a break from head coaching in the arena league to take a spot coaching the outside linebackers at Albion College.
Now, he’ll return to the indoor ranks carrying an 18-12 record as a head coach and a resume that includes two playoff appearances in as many seasons.
“To be able to work with someone of his expertise and experience is another major reason why I wanted to be here,” Ismail said in the release. “We will continue the winning ways with tremendous positive culture for our community and fans. I am very grateful for the opportunity and can’t wait to bring another championship to Des Moines.”
Expect the Barnstormers as well as other teams in the Indoor Football League to start announcing player signings soon as well as an announcement regarding Iowa’s assistant coaching staff.