Brad Laird will return for a fifth season at Northwestern State, though with significant staff changes.
Laird is just 12-28 through his first four campaigns, though president Dr. Marcus Jones noted the COVID disruption and a lack of a full-time athletics director as mitigating factors that bought Laird another season. (Longtime AD Greg Burke is moving to a different position within the university, and a search for his replacement is ongoing.)
"The change in athletic administration makes it even more practical to extend Coach Laird's appointment," Jones said. "The new athletic director should have an opportunity to evaluate football and other sports and make decisions on coaches and other personnel going forward."
Northwestern State finished just 3-8 this season, though two of those wins came in their last three games. The Demons closed the year with 24-20 win at rival McNeese on Saturday. It was the first time Northwestern State has won in Lake Charles in 33 years.
"Most college football coaches are given at least four years to establish their own programs," Jones said. "Brad has been the head coach for four seasons, but this has certainly not been a normal four-year period because of the chaos of COVID and other factors."
Laird is perhaps the most important figure in NSU football history. A Demons quarterback from 1991-95, his 6,037 passing yards are still the most in school history, and he was the club's defensive coordinator for eight seasons before his appointment as head coach in 2018. He is a member of the N-Club Hall of Fame.
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