New coach Mike Durnin is hoping to take the Luther College football program to a new level. The Norse have had a number of winning seasons in the past few years but the program has not won an Iowa Conference title since 1978.
Durnin says when you are not at the very top, you start to question how you get there. He says athletes, coaches and administrators ask that question no matter if you’re at the very bottom on in the middle.
Durnin says he has tried to analyze every part of the program to see what needs to be done for the Norse to move into title contention. He says it’s like spokes on a wheel, as you look at every spoke and see if it’s related to being successful in football.
Durnin had been an assistant coach at Wisconsin-LaCrosse and says he took the job because he saw potential in the program. Durnin says he saw a group of young men who were adamant about taking the next step, and the administration was the same way.
A big key will be improvement on defense. That unit gave up 25 points per game in 2007. Durnin says there is a lot of experience up front, while the linebackers are young, but athletic. He says they need to make the overall defense a little more consistent to avoid giving up the explosive plays.
The Norse open the season at home on September sixth against St. Olaf of Minnesota.