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Ruland frequently speaks in sayings. Talking about the knee and ankle injuries that ended his career, he described himself as having the “mind of a very intelligent 15-year-old and the body of a 90-year-old.”

“Every day you’re going to hear something new. He’s got sayings for days,” Munson said. “I can say that I laughed at each and every one of them, because they were funny. A couple of them, I was crying laughing because they were so funny.”

The “tough-love” may have been exactly what the Firebirds needed to continue to get off probation and into the spotlight as a premier team. Ruland demands respect and focus in practice. But he’s not afraid to share a laugh with his team.

Munson added: “I think that he’s a funny coach, but like I said, he means well and we all love him.”