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Marty Hoffmann ’05 named head coach of the University of Minnesota, Morris football program

Marty Hoffman
Joe Tischler, Director of Athletic Communications
Publication date: 
December 1, 2017

The University of Minnesota, Morris announces the selection of Marty Hoffmann '05 as head coach of the Cougar football program.

Hoffmann is no stranger to Morris, as he has 10 years' experience as a coach and standout player for the maroon and gold. He was the Cougars' co-head coach in 2017 after serving as the team's defensive and strength/conditioning coordinator. Hoffmann's return to Morris in 2013 followed successful stints coaching defense, special teams, and corners at Minnesota State University, Moorhead, Carleton College, and South Dakota State University.

"I want University of Minnesota, Morris football to be a championship program both on and off the field," said Hoffmann. "This university holds a very special place in my heart, and I'm prepared to lead it into the future."

Hoffmann has been a key contributor to program turnarounds and player accomplishments over his 13-year coaching career. Hoffmann worked as a secondary and special teams assistant coach at South Dakota State University, where he helped the Jackrabbits win their first conference championship in 63 years. At Carleton College he was the special teams coordinator and secondary coach, helping to lead the Knights to seven wins in a season for the first time in 16 years. He moved on to serve as the special teams and co-defensive coordinator at Minnesota State University Moorhead, where the Dragons were among the conference leaders in kick/punt return average.

At Morris Hoffmann's defenses have been highly ranked both in the conference and the nation. In 2016 the Cougars ranked in the NCAA Division III top 25 in turnovers forced, third-down efficiency, red zone defense, interceptions, and defensive touchdowns. In 2017 the Cougars were again ranked high nationally in turnovers forced, and linebacker Drew Shipley led the conference in total tackles and was ranked 15th nationally in tackles per game.

Hoffmann's dedication to Cougar football and commitment to success was evident from his first day as a Cougar athlete. A Cougar football MVP, Hoffmann was a two-time All-Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC) First Team selection as a linebacker and defensive back for Morris from 2001–04 and set a then-program record of 130 tackles in the 2004 season where was named UMAC Defensive Player of the Year. After earning his BA in sports management and coaching endorsement at Morris, Hoffmann served as a Cougar assistant football coach for a year before earning his MS in health, PE, and recreation from South Dakota State University.

"Coach Hoffmann has proven he is dedicated to Morris and to the Cougar football program," said Jason Herbers, director of intercollegiate athletics. "We look forward to seeing him continue his positive influence on our student-athletes, the campus, and the community as we build Cougar football for a great future."

Matthew Johnson will serve as the Cougars' associate head coach. Prior to sharing head coaching duties with Hoffmann in 2017, Johnson spent 13 seasons on the Cougar staff, coaching the offense. He also serves as associate athletic director and coordinator for the Sport Studies and Athletics academic discipline.

Johnson was Hoffmann's teammate at Morris in the early 2000s. He was a four-year starter and two-year captain for the Cougars who started all 44 games of his college career on the offensive line, and was the "Men's Honor Athlete" in 2004. Johnson earned his BA from Morris in social science with a minor in history and coaching certification. He holds a MEd with a focus on educational administration from the University of Minnesota, Duluth.

Hoffmann and Johnson have been key leaders in rebuilding the foundations of Cougar football. The team posted a 6-4 record in 2016, including a perfect 5-0 mark at home—the program's first unbeaten home season in nearly 40 seasons. They co-led a young team in 2017, with just six fourth-year and five third-year players. Herbers noted Hoffmann's and Johnson's contributions to recruiting two of the largest and most talented entering classes to join Cougar football in over a decade (2016, 2017) as critical to building the program's success in the conference and the region.

"I'm very excited to continue to work with not just a fellow Cougar football alum, but also a true friend in Coach Johnson," said Hoffmann. "He is dedicated and committed to Morris, and I look forward to building the rest of the staff in the coming weeks while hitting the road recruiting."