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Creighton ready for new challenge
Chris Creighton loves the underdog role.
He thrives on the challenge and on surprising people.
And that’s exactly what the former Wabash College football coach intends to do at Division I-AA Drake University as the school’s new head football coach.
He’s already shocked people with the announcement of his hiring during Saturday’s press conference in Des Moines, Iowa.
“I don’t have any connections in Iowa. I don’t know any high school coaches there,” he said. “People were expecting a hot name coach, one who was coaching in a bowl game - not a no-name from Indiana.”
After seven years at Division III Wabash, Creighton now moves up the coaching ladder - but he still faces plenty of uphill battles.
Creighton’s heading to a school which will have its third coach in three years. He’ll be playing in a conference, the Pioneer Football League, with a busy travel schedule with schools ranging from San Diego to North Carolina to Indiana and Kentucky.
And he’ll be working with no scholarships, as Division I-AA schools don’t give out money for their football programs.
But as long as Creighton follows his five tenets - academic excellence, to win, to become a family, to have fun and for the program to significantly impact the guys’ lives - then success should come, just like it did at Ottawa, Kan., and Wabash.
“The players need some direction,” he said. “They’re missing stability and I think the challenge comes in upping the ante, bringing commitment and stability . . . Just the fact that it’s a non-scholarship program . . . I can’t help think the football players have something to prove.”
Even though he doesn’t start until 2008 begins, Creighton already has a laundry list of tasks to do - which includes introducing himself to the Drake football team.
He still hasn’t met with Bulldogs’ players yet - thanks to the winter weather, which caused his press conference to be delayed by a day (his plane couldn’t fly in Friday because of fog) and then he had to drive back home Saturday night instead of fly.
“I’m very, very proud to (have been) a part of Wabash football,” Creighton said. “It’s the same tenets. I’m drawn to the challenge of creating the kind of program I think can exist.”
WABASH COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Creighton ready for new challenge
By John Groth