Ole Football Family:
I write to you with an update from the hill regarding our football program. Yesterday Craig Stern was relieved of his duties as our head football coach. This decision was not taken lightly. After careful consideration and analysis of the progress made over the last two seasons, I felt it was in the best interest of our student-athletes and football program to go in a different direction.
I sincerely thank Craig for his commitment and dedication to our student-athletes in his 13 seasons on the hill.
Lerfald Named Interim Head Coach
We have named Justin Lerfald as the interim head coach. He and the assistant coaches continue to recruit talented student-athletes that can achieve success at St. Olaf academically, socially and athletically. We are working to make this a smooth transition and I am confident we will be successful in bringing in a strong and deep recruiting class.
The new head coach will determine whether or not to retain the assistant coaches that are on staff. Each has been encouraged to apply for the head coaching position if they have interest.
Our national search is underway. We have posted the job in several places, spent the day identifying potential candidates and fielding a number of calls from interested coaches.
This will be an inclusive process. We have put together a search committee who will work with me in identifying our next leader. The Touchdown Club, too, is an important part of our program and will play a role in the screening of the candidates. We will communicate to you as we determine what that role will be.
Our goal is to have a coach in place by Christmas. We will work diligently, efficiently and thoroughly but we will not rush. This hire is far too important.
Each of us cares deeply for St. Olaf College and St. Olaf Football. Now is a time for us to come together in this transition. It is clear to me that St. Olaf Football can be better. No one is satisfied with its current state. St. Olaf Football has been good before and will be good again. There are a number of exciting things happening within and around our program that should provide us optimism for our future.
I encourage you to reach out to me should you have any questions, input or candidates for the position. I can be reached at email@example.com or 507-786-3965.
The future of St. Olaf Athletics and St. Olaf Football is bright and I assure you we will find a leader that embodies the qualities that will enhance our college, program and our student athlete experience.
I appreciate your continued support of Ole Football.
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