Glenn Hired as Wyoming's 30th Head Football Coach

Dec. 12, 2002


Press Conference Audio

Joe Glenn, one of the most successful Division I-AA head football coaches in the country, has been named the University of Wyoming's 30th head coach, UW Athletics Director Lee Moon, and President Philip L. Dubois announced Thursday.

Glenn's contract calls for five years with a base salary of $140,004 per year, Moon said. With supplements, his salary will be $445,000 each year. According to Moon, with other incentives, he has a potential of earning $550,000. The official length of his contract is January 1, 2003 through December 31, 2007. The buyout clause is the state base salary ($140,004) for each year of his contract to be paid by him or any organization that hires him away from UW.

Glenn, 53, comes to Wyoming from the University of Montana, where he produced a tremendous record. He won three Big Sky Conference championships and guided the Grizzlies to a Division I-AA national championship in 2001. In three seasons he posted a 39-6 (.867) record. That is the best winning percentage in the history of the Big Sky which produced such head coaches as John L. Smith, Dennis Erickson, Jim Sweeney, Sonny Lubick and Mike Price. He posted a 20-2 mark in conference play. He was 13-2 in 2000, 15-1 in 2001 and 11-3 this past season. During one stretch over the 2001 and 2002 seasons, Montana won 24 straight games, tying the I-AA all-time record.

"We are absolutely thrilled to have attracted Joe to Wyoming," Moon said. "He has won championships on every level he has coached. We set our goal to hire the most qualified individual we could, and a successful head coach if possible. With Joe we reached our goal.

University of Wyoming Athletics Director Lee Moon introduces newly hired Head Football Coach Joe Glenn at a press conference held in UW's Rochelle Athletics Center, on Thursday, December 12.

"I talked to a lot of people during my search. It was clear that Joe was the right man to bring our football program back to where we expect it to be. He is a man of integrity, and a class act all the way around. His coaching philosophy matches mine as far as his offensive and defensive plans, and his treatment of his student-athletes. He brings a great deal to the table.

"Joe is a great fit for this institution, and for the state of Wyoming. We could not be happier, and we look forward to watching Joe bring this program back to the kind of success it has enjoyed throughout its tradition."

Glenn just completed his 28th season as a coach at the collegiate level, and his 18th as a head coach. His career record as a head coach is 158-59-1 (.727). He was named Montana's head coach on December 6, 1999. He guided UM to two straight Division I-AA title games. He won the Big Sky Conference all three seasons he was there, as well as being named the league's Coach of the Year each year. In 2001, the Griz won a school-record 15 games, going 15-1 en route to the NCAA Division I-AA national championship, defeating Furman 13-6. He was named AFCA Region 5 Coach of the Year as well as the Big Sky Coach of the Year.

"I couldn't be happier, or more proud to be the next head coach at Wyoming," Glenn said. "There is so much pride and tradition here. I'm looking forward to working with the people of this great state, and with the young men in the program. I can't wait to kick things into gear.

"I believe this is a wonderful fit for my family and me. I know what kind of person I am, and I think that person fits this state. Most of my coaching career has been on the Front Range. I look forward to meeting and working with folks in every corner of this state. This is going to be a great marriage, and I'm looking so forward to getting it going."

The Griz advanced to the I-AA championship game in Glenn's first year at the helm, losing to Georgia Southern, 27-25. He was the winner of the Eddie Robinson Award, given annually to the Division I-AA Coach of the Year. He also was Big Sky Coach of the Year that season.

Glenn came to Big Sky country from Northern Colorado, where he was the most successful Division II coach in the country. He directed the Bears to 11 straight winning seasons. His record there was 98-35 (.737). The Bears earned five straight trips (seven overall) to the Division II playoffs, and won back-to-back NCAA Division II National Football Championshilps in 1996 and 1997. UNC was only the fourth team in Division II history to repeat as national champs. He was named AFCA Division II National Coach of the Year following the 1996 and 1997 seasons. He was named one of Colorado's "Greatest Coaches of the 1900's", by The Denver Post in the spring of 2000.

Newly hired Wyoming Head Football Coach Joe Glenn has a career record as a head man of 158-59-1 (.727).

"The University of Wyoming administration is committed to achieving a level of excellence in our major sports comparable to our level of academic excellence," Dubois said. "Last year's successful trip to the NCAA men's basketball tournament showed it is possible for UW to be competitive within the Mountain West Conference and nationally. We want that same kind of success for our football team, and for the fans who have supported the program during good times and bad. With the hiring of Joe Glenn, we believe the good times are on the way back.

"Prior to the contract we restructed last year for Steve McClain, fans of UW athletics programs wondered aloud why we can't attract and retain the kind of quality coaches who can build and maintain nationally competitive teams," Dubois continued. "Well, Steve McClain is still with us, and the contract we structured for Coach Glenn anticipates that he also will be successful at UW for many years to come."

Glenn went to Northern Colorado as its quarterbacks coach in 1987. He took on the head -coaching duties there in 1989. He coached at Montana from 1980 through 1985. In 1982, the Griz won the Big Sky title, and earned their first-ever trip to the Division I-AA playoffs. During his tenure at Montana, the Grizzles broke or tied 89 offensive school records.

"Hiring a head coach always involves an element of risk," Dubois said. "Will he be the right fit for UW? Will UW be right for him? Based on his record, and based on our visits with Joe, we are putting our money behind our belief that he is right for UW.

"Tying most of the contract's incentive provisions to ticket sales, thoughtful game scheduling, and team achievement," Dubois said, "will reward Joe for success on the field and in the classroom. There's no reason we can't have both, and we believe Joe Glenn is the man to get it done."

In 1976, at the age of 27, Glenn took over the coaching reigns at Doane (Neb.) College, becoming the youngest collegiate head coach in the nation. In four seaons he was 21-18-1 there.

He began his coaching career in 1974, at South Dakota, his alma mater, serving as the offensive backfield coach for one season before heading to Northern Arizona University where he held the same position.

A 1971 graduate of South Dakota, Glenn earned a bachelor's degree in health, physical education, recreation and athletics. As a quarterback and wide receiver, he served as team captain for the Coyotes as a senior.

After graduation, he earned an ROTC military commission and served two years in the U.S. Army. In 1975, he earned his master's degree in education from South Dakota.

Joe and his wife, Michele, have two adult children, Erin and Casey. Casey is a senior at Carroll College, and plays on the football team that will compete in this season's NAIA national championship game.