Chet Anderson Stadium has been the home of Bemidji State University football since 1939 and offers a stunning lakeside setting that is practically unparalleled in college athletics. Miltimore Wallis ATAC
Interim Head Coach
Brent Bolte enters his 19th season on the Bemidji State coaching staff after 14 as a full-time assistant coach and spending last year as the interim Head Coach. After spending three seasons on the staff, Bolte received a promotion to full-time assistant coach in August 2003. He was named Co-Defensive Coordinator in 2005 and since has helped mastermind one of the best defenses in the nation.
The Gang Green defense has been a regular in the NCAA rankings since Bolte began his coordinator duties. The team has finished in the top seven nationally in rush defense three times, including leading the country in 2006, and top-20 five times. In the last eight seasons, the Beavers have finished in the top 20 in total defense on four occasions: 2006 (16th), 2009 (14th), 2010 (18th) and 2012 (15th). The 2011 version of the Gang Green defense held its opponents to 16.0 points per game to rank No. 3 in the nation.
In 2012, the Beavers finished second in the NSIC in total defense (295.6 yards allowed per game), rushing defense (102.8 yards allowed per game) and scoring defense (18.7 points allowed per game), while they closed 2012 15th nationally in total defense, rushing defense and 18th in scoring defense. In addition, Cory Crosby earned All-NSIC First Team and Daktronics All-Central Region First Team honors, while freshman Connor Quinn was named All-NSIC as a second team member after he ended the season first in tackles among the NSICs freshmen linebackers.
Associate Head Coach/DB
For over 2 decades, one constant on the sidelines for the Bemidji State Football program has been the presence of Coach Rich Jahner. Entering his 22nd season with the Beavers, Jahner has served many roles for the Beavers, including the last 18 as Associate Head Coach. An original member of Jeff Teschs staff, Jahner was hired as the Defensive Coordinator in 1996. Jahner, who also serves as BSUs Recruiting Coordinator, coached linebackers his first season. The following fall after his first season in 1996, Jahner switched to coaching the defensive backs and has overseen the defensive secondary ever since.
In 2011, 3-time all conference Safety Brody Scheff earned first team All-American accolades and was named the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Defensive Player of the Year. Scheff become the second defensive back to earn All-American honors under Jahners mentoring, following cornerback Terrell Phelps who garnered the distinction in 2008. As a recruiter, Jahner signed athletes that went on to earn All-American honors: Zach Pulkinen, P, 2013; Jake Anderson, LB, 2009; Terrell Phelps, CB, 2008; and Eddie Acosta, RB, 2000, 2001.
Under Jahners guidance, 18 defensive backs have earned All-NSIC honors: 2016 – Gunner Olszewski, Damon Benham, Kameel Al-Khouri; 2015 – Gunner Olszewski, Damon Benham; 2014 – Troy Beckett, Scott Christensen and Dylan Valentine; 2013 – Scott Christensen; 2012- Charlie Hrdlicka; 2011 – Brody Scheff, Dusty Sluzewicz; 2010 – Brody Scheff; 2009 – Brody Scheff; 2008 – Terrell Phelps, Jason Kunz; 2007 – Jeremiah Johnson, Terrell Phelps; 2004 – Torry Joubert; 2003 – Marty Humeniuk, Kurtis Woodard; 2002 – Marty Humeniuk, Tom Maus; 1999 – Rob Sutera, Ryan Fritts.
Matt Cain finished his second season as an assistant coach with the Bemidji State football program in 2016. He is responsible for coaching the defensive line. Prior to coming to Bemidji State, Cain spent the last five years from 2011-2015 as a part of his alma mater, Carroll Universitys football coaching staff. He was the defensive ends coach for the Pioneers.
The Beavers defense only allowed 19.1 points per game in 2015, which was third least in the conference. The defense also ranked third in total defense by having the third best rush defense and seventh best pass defense. The rush defense only allowed an average of 113.8 yards per game while the pass defense only allowed 234.7 yards per game. The Gang Green defense also recorded 30 sacks and 15 interceptions, both ranked in the top ten in the conference. The defensive line had Mario Stephens named Second Team All-NSIC while Chris Ostby and Jake Wirsching were named All-NSIC Honorable Mentions. Mitchell Elbe added another award to the defensive line when he was named to the 2015 Fall Academic All-NSIC Team.
In 2016 the Gang Gree defense ranked fifth in the NSIC allowing 394 yards per game but just 4.9 yards per play on their way to a record 9 total wins and the programs first post season win in the Mineral Water Bowl. They also ranked fifth in the conference with 33 sacks and Defensive Lineman Alex Burgess was selected to the All-NSIC First Team Defense while Lineman Jake Wirsching was name to the All-NSIC Second Team Defense.
Ryan Olson enters his first season as the run game coordinator and offensive line coach for the Bemidji State football program in 2017.
Olson helped to guide the offensive line that helped the Beavers to the second best offense in the conference. The Beavers led the NSIC in scoring with 45.6 points per game and were second with 523.8 yards per game which consisted of 293.7 passing yards per game to go along with 230.2 rushing yards per game. This all led to a program record 9 wins on the season including the first post season victory in team history with a win in the Mineral Water Bowl. Offensive Linemen Brandon Schindler and Jesse Hein were named to the NSIC North Division All-Conference First Team Offense and Hein was also named to the Don Hansen NCAA Division II All-Super Region Three Second team while Schindler was named to the third team. Off the field, the Beavers landed 24 student-athletes on the Fall Academic All-NSIC Team.
Before coming to Bemidji State, Olson served as the offensive line graduate assistant coach at University of Buffalo for one season. The Bulls averaged 153.2 rushing yards per game under Olson and had two student-athletes named to the All-Mid American Conference third team. Buffalo ranked seventh in the MAC in sacks allowed with 23.
Dr. Ken Traxler
Dr. Ken Traxler completed his 19th year on the BSU coaching staff, and his 16th as an assistant coach in 2016 after spending three seasons as a volunteer assistant.
Traxler helped BSU produce an All-Conference performer at defensive tackle from 2002-2005. Then when taking over coaching duties for the linebackers, guided two second-team performers in 2006, into first-team players in 2007. Now in his seventh season overseeing the offensive linemen, Traxler has coached 11 players to all-conference status, including offensive linemen, Jesse Hein and Matt Valentine to second team offensive honors in 2014. Hein and Valentine helped the Beavers compile 4,251 yards of total offense, including 1,411 yards of rushing. In fourth down conversions, BSU was 46 percent (16-of-35) and in the red zone it was 79 percent (30-of-38).
In the 2016 season the Beavers had the second best offense in the conference. The Beavers led the NSIC in scoring with 45.6 points per game and were second with 523.8 yards per game which consisted of 293.7 passing yards per game to go along with 230.2 rushing yards per game. This all led to a program record 9 wins on the season including the first post season victory in team history with a win in the Mineral Water Bowl. Three student-athletes (Hein, Gena Adams, and Brandon Schindler) were also named to the NSIC North Division All-Conference First Team Offense along with four being named to the NSIC North Division All-Conference Second Team Offense and two to the NSIC Honorable Mention Team. Jesse Hein was named to the Don Hansen NCAA Division II All-Super Region Three Second team while Jordan Hein and Schindler were named to the third team and Jordan Hein was nominated for the Harlon Hill Award. Off the field, the Beavers landed 24 student-athletes on the Fall Academic All-NSIC Team and running back Gena Adams was named to the 2016 Academic All-America Division II football team as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).