(Posted September 15, 2003)

HUNTINGDON, Pa.--The 2003 fall sports season marked the beginning of yet another year of guest coaches for the Juniata football team. Coaches include faculty members and professors from the Juniata College campus, who want to be an active part of Juniata athletics.

This year?s group of coaches includes Juniata provost Jim Lakso, lecturer in English Amy Mathur, and assistant director of alumni relations Bub Parker.

Although the coaches all have markedly different backgrounds and occupations, they each express their desire to gain a better appreciation of the game of football. ?In my role as provost, I want the students and coaches to understand that I care about the program and understand the difficulties of recruitment, retention, and budgets,? Lakso comments.

Both Lakso and Parker express a love for athletics, football in particular. Both say they want to be part of a sport that during their youth escaped them or changed dramatically since they played. Both will take time from their busy schedules to attend practices, meetings, and of course the weekend?s game--just like a typical coach. ?I am not the type to just sit back and observe in a setting, like the one I will be exposed to. I plan on being involved in the practices and game as a coach,? Parker says.

Lakso spent this week coaching alongside the football staff and will man the sidelines in this week?s game against Moravian, while Parker will be screaming from the sidelines the week of Sept. 29 to Oct. 4 and at the Oct. 4 game against Susquehanna. Amy Mathur will coach the game on Sept. 20 against Delaware Valley College.

Coaches, faculty, and staff are given the opportunity to take part in this program by responding to a mass e-mail. Kevin Burke, head football coach, started the program last year in order to allow faculty and staff to see what it takes to prepare for a game. ?We feel this is a great way to bring our program to the college community,? comments Burke.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.