By Jesse Vineyard/GCU Staff
Chalk up one more to join the ranks of Lopes in the pros.
Former Grand Canyon University Men’s Lacrosse standout attackman Dean Fairall has signed a one-year contract with the Colorado Mammoth of the National Lacrosse League, the premier box lacrosse league in the United States. Fairall played for the Lopes from 2013 to 2016, amassing 146 goals, which ranks third all-time in team history; along with 108 assists, which ranks first all-time. He graduated in 2016 with a degree in Business Management.
“This means a lot,” Fairall said about the signing. “I’ve been playing lacrosse since I was three years old, so this is something that I have been working for my whole life.”
For the last two seasons, Fairall, a native of St. Albert, Alberta, has been playing lacrosse for the Coquitlam Adanacs in the Western Lacrosse Association, a Senior A box lacrosse league based in western Canada. Fairall has led the Adanacs in goals both seasons with 21 and 22, respectively. He joins Carson Barton, the Lopes’ all-time scoring leader with 166, as the only two GCU lacrosse players who have signed in the pros. Barton was drafted from the Adanacs in 2015 by the Calgary Roughnecks of the NLL.
“Playing in the WLA for the last couple seasons, I’ve been surrounded by a lot of players who have played in the NLL, so I was hearing from them that I might get a call,” Fairall said. “But once I got the call, I was pumped to get it. The Mammoth are one of the more storied organizations in the NLL, so this is a dream come true.”
Throughout his career with GCU, Fairall was named 1st-Team All-Southwestern Lacrosse Conference Attack three times and Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association (MCLA) 2nd-Team All-America Attack twice. In 2015, Fairall was named as an MCLA 1st-Team All American when he scored a career-high 54 goals and 37 assists on the way to GCU’s first national championship. Fairall teamed with Barton and Drew Dziadyk from 2013 to 2015 to form a lethal scoring trio in which they averaged a combined 130 goals per season.
“GCU really taught me a lot about winning and working toward a goal,” Fairall said. “I remember my first year there, we barely made the national tournament, we didn’t make it the next year, and then won the championship my third year. It just shows that you have to persevere and work hard toward a goal.”
As a “high-level shooter and finisher,” Lopes’ Head Coach Manny Rapkin saw Fairall from the beginning as a player who had the talent to play in the pros. Already having coached multiple MCLA All-Americans and now two pro players, Rapkin sees this signing as a big step for the program and university.
“It says a lot about the program and school that we’re attracting this kind of high-level talent,” Rapkin said. “He is someone who loves lacrosse, and is driven to be the best that he can be.”
Understanding what he brings to the field, Rapkin knows what it will take for Fairall to perform in Colorado like he did with GCU.
“He’s worked hard the last two years in the WLA, and has become a better lacrosse player every year,” Rapkin said. “He’ll get into camp and work hard. It’s a very competitive league, but I have no doubt that he’ll do it again.”