Ostrowsky replaces Anderson as ’Cats football head coach

Jon Young

Former offensive coordinator Chris Ostrowsky was named the head football coach at NMU last Wednesday. Ostrowsky has been at Northern for two seasons and has 15 years of coaching experience. In a press release interim athletic director Steve Reed said Ostrowsky’s the right fit for NMU.

“Chris has coaching experience at Division I, II, and III levels,” Reed said. He is passionate about NMU and he believes relationship building is the key to success. He has gained the full respect of our football student-athletes with an offensive system based on trust and accountability.”

This is Ostrowsky’s first head coaching job at the college level. He was an assistant for three seasons at Division I Northeastern University in Boston. Prior to Northeastern Ostrowsky was offensive coordinator at Widener University from 2005-2007. He also held an offensive coordinator position at Washington and Lee University from 2002-2004.

Ostrowsky runs the spread offense and has been the keynote speaker at the 2005 and 2011 Nike Coaches Clinic where he spoke on the spread and red zone offense. Ostrowsky said he’s ready to build the ’Cats into a contender.

“Football wise we’re going to create a nationally recognized brand that will be Northern Michigan football,” Ostrowsky said. “The only standard will be winning championships and graduating scholars, nothing else will be discussed. I can’t tell you how excited I am to coach this team.”

Ostrowsky’s hiring comes a day after the announcement that former head coach Bernie Anderson’s contract would not be renewed. The contract was set to expire on June 30 but Reed said it was time make the decision now.

“We do a review of our teams after each season,” Reed said. “Based on the football squad’s performance for the last six years, with the past season being the tipping point, it has been decided that leadership changes are necessary at this time.”

The Wildcats were 3-7 in the GLIAC and 4-7 overall this season. The ’Cats started the season 3-0 before losing six of their last seven games. In the wake of the coaching change defensive coordinator Randy Awrey has resigned after four seasons with the program.

In his six seasons at the Wildcat helm Anderson compiled a 24-38 record. Before his time at NMU Anderson was head coach for 19 seasons at Michigan Tech racking up a 117-134 record. He is Tech’s all time wins leader. Anderson’s most successful season at NMU was in 2009 when the team went 6-4.

“I personally want to start off and thank Coach Anderson for giving me the opportunity 15 months ago to come in and work side by side with such a class man,” Ostrowsky said. “I also want to thank him for leaving this program in a whole bunch better shape then he inherited it five or six years ago when he got here.”

Ostrowsky said the first thing he is concerned with is the recruiting process. After that he will turn his attention to filling out his coaching staff. Ostrowsky said the will focus on playing with intensity.

“We will play with great energy, we will play with great toughness and passion. We’ll play with a swagger,” Ostrowsky said. “What that means to me is, and that word is critical, it means preparation.”