Meet SFU’s three new football coaches

James Holan, Taylor Summers and Mike Rigell all join Thomas Ford’s coaching staff

SFU football will be looking forward to 2019 for their first GNAC win in years. (Photo courtesy of SFU Athletics)

This past week, SFU football head coach Thomas Ford announced three new coaching staff members for the team. James Holan was named the new offensive coordinator, Taylor Summers the new defensive coordinator, and Mike Regell the new special teams coach and recruiting coordinator. The three will be joining assistant coaches Vincent Campbell, Quin Courtney, and Robin Weathersby, along with Ford, to round out the SFU football coaching staff.

James Holan, offensive coordinator

Holan previously coached at Piedmont High School in Piedmont, California. He served two seasons there as an assistant head coach and defensive coordinator before taking on the role of head coach in April 2015. In his three seasons as head coach, he led the program to a 24–13 overall record, along with three consecutive North Coast Section Playoff appearances.

Prior to coaching at Piedmont High School, Holan was co-offensive coordinator, and strength and conditioning coach at Mission Hills High School in San Marcos, California for four seasons (2009–12). Before this, Holan coached the offensive line at College of Marin. He was also a student athlete at Linfield College, where he was part of four Northwest Conference Championships as an offensive lineman.

This experience on the offensive line will certainly be welcome, as it was an area of weakness for the Clan last season. Holan will be responsible for coaching the offensive line, and making sure that senior quarterback Miles Richardson gets the protection he needs to be effective.

Taylor Summers, defensive coordinator

Summers will be joining SFU football from O’Dea High School in Seattle, Washington. In his past season there as the defensive line coach, O’Dea High School was the Washington 3A state champions. His experience should translate nicely to the Clan, as he will be responsible for coaching the defensive line at SFU.

In addition, Summers has already coached at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Div. II level, with both the University of Minnesota Crookston (UMC) and Bemidji State University (BSU). At UMC, Summers coached quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, and special teams. Previous to that, he was an assistant coach at BSU for three seasons.

Same with Holan, Summers played at Linfield College, although he played on the defensive side of the ball. Summers finished his Linfield career fifth in all-time sacks for the school. He has a bachelor’s degree in history from Linfield as well as a master’s degree in education from BSU.  

Mike Rigell, special teams coach and recruiting coordinator

Prior to joining the Clan, Rigell was the secondary coach and special teams coordinator at Southern Virginia University, who play in the NCAA Div. III.

Rigell was a standout wide receiver and kick returner for Brigham Young University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree. After university, he went on the play professionally in the Arena Football League for the Utah Warriors, Tri-Cities Fever, and Rapid City Aces from 2003–06.

Rigell also served as special teams coordinator at Snow College and the University of Puget Sound for four combined seasons.

Special teams were actually one of SFU’s strengths last season, in large part due to the play of wide receiver and kick returner Gavin Cobb, who had one of the highlights of last season with a 99-yard kick return touchdown.

Perhaps most importantly, Rigell will be in charge of the recruiting for SFU. For a team that has not won a game in three seasons, getting top prospects out of high schools in the Pacific Northwest will be huge for the Clan’s success in the upcoming seasons.

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