, Muskogee, OK


November 17, 2013

Statement from Kenny Evans

Former NSU football coach Kenny Evans sent a statement to the Phoenix in which he talks about his dismissal and the future of NSU football:

“Number 1, let me say I love Northeastern State University and my time here, although short, has been very  productive and I am extremely proud of many accomplishments. I was totally caught off guard 45 minutes after winning against our rival school – University of Central Oklahoma – for the President’s Cup, which we won for the fourth time in a row and also in a game we played over 30 freshmen after starting the season with injuries to 12 starters. Celebrating the win, I was told I was no longer the head football Coach at NSU.

“I actually thought is was a joke at first. Taking over a program that had not had a winning season in ten years, and inheriting a team that had over 20 players on academic probation and over 25 others on misconduct probation, we were able to change the culture and get the program to a 2010 Lone Star North Championship and a 2011 Bowl Game (only the fifth in school history). The graduation rate in football also increased from 32 percent to over 70 percent during my tenure.

“Joining the MIAA last year and only winning 6 games of our 20 conference games – I guess is my downfall – 11 of those games were against nationally-ranked teams. My only hope as someone that truly cares about NSU football’s future is that the next head coach gets a better opportunity to recruit  and compete in this conference than I did.

“Just look at the football facilities of the 11 current football schools left in the MIAA and their budgets and you will know what I mean. This team has done so much – from raising money so they can get new jerseys to forming their own study hall groups to competing down  to the wire against the best teams nationally in NCAA Division II.  I can’t say enough about these players that I leave behind and hope they are given a fair chance to compete and develop  in the future.

“I appreciate the support of so many of the true Northeastern State family and only hope for better things in NSU’s future. I have not formally been given any explanation for this decision and really don’t care as it is definitely evident NSU football is a lot better off now than when I started in 2008 and I hope the next guy is given more  of a fighting chance. It’s hard to win a gun fight when you are handed a pocket knife. Go RiverHawks / Redmen.”

– Kenny Evans, former NSU head football coach

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