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Northwest Director of Athletics Announces Retirement

Mel Tjeerdsma has served as the Director of Athletics since 2013 after leading the football program for 17 years.

Posted: Feb 28, 2018 9:39 AM

(MARYVILLE, Mo.) The Director of Athletics for Northwest Missouri State University Mel Tjeerdsma announced Wednesday that he is retiring effective April 30.

Tjeerdsma has served as the Director of Athletics since 2013 after leading the football program for 17 years.

“My past five years as athletic director have been very rewarding and this time has allowed me to give back to the university that I love,” Tjeerdsma said. "I want to give a special thanks to our student-athletes and our great fans who make up the Bearcat family. It’s been a thrill to serve as athletics director at Northwest.”

Since Tjeerdsma has been the director, Northwest has won four NCAA Division II national championships, 11 MIAA regular season titles and six MIAA tournament titles. During the 2016-2017 season, the Bearcats became the first institution in NCAA Division II history to win both a football and men's basketball national championship in the same academic year.

While he was head football coach for the Bearcats from 1994 to 2010, Tjeerdsma led Northwest to a 183-43 record and winning three NCAA Division II national championships and 12 MIAA titles. 

In January, Tjeerdsma was selected for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame by the National Football Foundation. He is one of three coaches, along with 10 former players, in the 2018 class, who will be inducted in December.

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