The Colorado Rapids on Tuesday continued a changing of the guard little more than a year after winning the MLS Cup, as they announced that managing director Jeff Plush is leaving the organization.
Plush’s departure comes less than six weeks after the club parted ways with head coach Gary Smith following a second consecutive trip to the postseason. Plush will serve as a consultant as the organization searches for his replacement and a new head coach.
“Jeff has played an important role in so much of the Rapids’ recent success on and off the field,” said Jim Martin, Kroenke Sports & Entertainment president and chief executive officer. “Jeff has poured his heart and soul into the Rapids. We are indebted to him for his hard work and unrelenting dedication to the Colorado Rapids and Major League Soccer.
“Jeff was also instrumental in the launch of Dick’s Sporting Goods Park and the creation of Altitude Sports & Entertainment. We wish him the very best as he begins the next phase of his career. Jeff is a dedicated professional and will do well in whatever he chooses to do.”
Plush was named to the position in January 2006. The Rapids had a regular season record of 65-67-54 during Plush’s tenure, earning playoff appearances in 2006, 2010 and 2011. They won the first MLS title in franchise history last season.
“The past six seasons with the Rapids have been a dream come true in many ways,” said Plush, who served as a marketing executive at KSE for five years prior to taking the head post of the Rapids. “I believe I have accomplished what I set out to accomplish; it’s time for me to explore the new opportunities in front of me. It’s been an honor to be a part of the incredible growth of Major League Soccer and to play a role in the Rapids’ first-ever championship.
"I would personally like to thank Rapids owner Stan Kroenke for giving me the opportunity to help lead this wonderful club. I wish the Rapids continued success. I will cherish the many friendships I have made in Denver and throughout the professional sports world over the past 11 years.
“I’m excited for the opportunities that lie ahead.”