We are all well aware of the highs and lows of the coaching profession. Work hard and land a great job, stay for a few years and continue to work your tail off only to be with another program in a few seasons, sometimes by choice, and other times due to circumstances beyond your control. That's life in the coaching world.
Back in 2002 Craig Bohl was let go as the defensive coordinator at Nebraska under Frank Solich. Shortly thereafter in 2003, he was named head coach at North Dakota State and has since led the program from a D-II school to an FCS powerhouse, including a 14-1 record and National title in 2011. The Bison have also racked up wins over both Minnesota and Kansas in the past two seasons.
In the FCS National title game this past year, Bohl took a page out of his mentor Tom Osborne's book and called a fake punt that went for 27 yards and a critical first down. That's just part of his competitive makeup as a coach.
“Coaches are competitive. Our environment is not static. There are certain times you have to take risks.”
On the very next play, they built off of that momentum and took a screen pass 39 yards for a touchdown and ended up national champs, winning 17-6.
As Sam McKewon of the World-Herald notes in his article on Bohl, "coaches don't have a rewind button", and Bohl rarely looks back on the turbulent times. “This game is humbling, not every day is going to be a Chamber of Commerce day.” he says.
When Bohl needs to reflect he simply swivels his chair around to take a look at a sign in his office.
“I have a sign in my office that says ‘Just coach the team'. Whenever I get in that mind-set, I turn around, look at that sign and say to myself, ‘Just coach the team.' That's what I'm doing.”