NDSU coach tells players not to focus on his move

North Dakota State coach Craig Bohl said Tuesday he told his

players during an emotional team meeting over the weekend that his

departure to Wyoming was no reason to pout.

Bohl, who will continue to coach the Bison in their quest for a

third straight Football Championship Subdivision title, visited

with his players about the Wyoming job Sunday morning, after word

leaked out on social media following Saturday’s second-round win

over Furman.

Bison athletic director Gene Taylor said some players were hurt

and upset by the news, but Bohl said during his weekly press

conference Tuesday that he asked them to keep their emotions in


”I said, hey, this is a man’s game played by men,” Bohl said.

”You want to get all emotional and have a big cry and pity party

or whatever, we ain’t going to accomplish what we need to.”

Bohl said he told the players to ”park that” and get focused

for this weekend’s quarterfinal game against Costal Carolina at the


”This about the here and now and us,” Bohl told reporters,

repeating his speech. ”Let’s go in and get ready to beat Coastal


Bohl, 55, has a 101-32 record in 11 seasons with NDSU. He led

the team through its transition from NCAA Division II to Division I

football and into elite territory. The Bison (12-0) are trying to

match Appalachian State’s string of three straight FCS or Division

I-AA titles.

Bohl said he wouldn’t have agreed to finish out the postseason

if he didn’t think he could manage the players. He said he’s not

worried about the move becoming a distraction, mainly because of a

veteran lineup and coaching staff.

”That’s not to minimize the potential of that,” Bohl said.

”One thing that this group has been really good about is being

focused on the task at hand. They’re able to compartmentalize a lot

of things.”

Bohl said players showed up at Monday’s practice ready to work

and are ”galvanized to move forward and win.” Asked how he

expected the fans to react Saturday, the coach said he hasn’t had

time to think about it.

”I do want to say, our fans have been phenomenal and I’m in

hopes that our fans are going to continue to be phenomenal here,”

Bohl said. ”I’m confident it’s going to stay that way long after I

ride off into the sunset.”

Coastal Carolina coach Joe Moglia, the former TD Ameritrade CEO

who went from football to business to football, said he’s not

surprised that Bohl took the Wyoming job. Moglia has guided the

Chanticleers (12-2) to their first appearance in the FCS


”I don’t think coaching is different than any other

profession,” Moglia said. ”Most coaches in the world are

interested in being able to get that next step, improve their lot

in life, take care of their family a little bit better, make a

little bit more money.”

Bohl could make more than $1 million a year at Wyoming if he

reaches certain incentives, like number of season tickets sold,

conference championships, bowl games, and top 25 finishes in the

Football Bowl Subdivision. He signed a five-year deal.

Moglia said Bohl’s ”done not a good job, he has done a

phenomenal job” at NDSU and likely had other opportunities along

the way. He also said the program should remain near the top of FCS

without Bohl.

”He’s established a great program and part of a great program’s

legacy is that you can have transition and you can continue to grow

and continue to prosper,” Moglia said.