NDSU coach tells players not to focus on his move

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 10, 2013 at 5:56 pm •  Published: December 10, 2013
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FARGO, N.D. (AP) — 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 check.

"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 Fargodome.

"This about the here and now and us," Bohl told reporters, repeating his speech. "Let's go in and get ready to beat Coastal Carolina."

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."

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