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Jeff Kolpack, Published January 23 2014

Roehl, two others hired to round out Klieman's coaching staff

FARGO – Tyler Roehl’s first run as a North Dakota State football coach was as a graduate assistant coach. The latest position has some more teeth to it.

The West Fargo and NDSU graduate was one of three assistants that officially completed new head coach Chris Klieman’s staff on Thursday. Also named were wide receivers coach Atif (ah-TEEF) Austin and defensive backs coach Joe Klanderman.

Roehl will coach the fullbacks and tight ends and will go out on the road recruiting for the first time and will have a more of a hand in evaluating Bison opponents. In other words, the responsibilities are being turned up.

“The opportunity to be a full-time position coach at the Division I level, at my alma mater, is something I couldn’t look past,” he said. “It’s something thousands of coaches would want and for me to get it is pretty humbling.”

Roehl spent the last two years as an assistant at Moorhead High School under Kevin Feeney. He said considering his weight room duties and summer commitments along with his coaching duties with the Spuds, his time commitment won’t change much at NDSU. The biggest change will be learning to coach tight ends, something he’s never done.

“Learning all the tight end stuff, understanding the offense and pushing myself to understand football every day will be the biggest challenge,” he said.

He’ll be with familiar faces. Klieman was a Bison assistant when Roehl was there. Offensive coordinator Tim Polasek is a close friend who worked with Roehl in 2011.

“He’s the lead man on offense, whatever he asks of me, I’ll do,” Roehl said.

NDSU’s other two assistants have backgrounds in southern Minnesota and Iowa. Austin coached with Klieman as an assistant at Northern Iowa from 2005-09. He spent last year at Stetson University (Fla.) as the running backs coach. Prior to that, he returned to his alma mater, Tarpon Springs High School in Tampa, Fla., as the head coach in 2010 and 2011. He was a four-year starter at Iowa State from 1999-2002 and also had a coaching stop at Southwest Minnesota State.

Klanderman spent the past 12 seasons at Minnesota State Mankato including the last seven as defensive coordinator. In all including his stint as a player for the Mavericks, he’s been with the school for the last 16 years.

Klieman still has to fill a graduate assistant position and a video coordinator position later this spring.

Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack can be reached at (701) 241-5546.

Kolpack’s NDSU media blog can be found

at www.areavoices.com/bisonmedia