Stevie Baker-Watson, DePauw's director of athletics and recreational sports, announced today that Bill Lynch, former head coach at Indiana University, Ball State and Butler, has been named as DePauw’s next head football coach.
Lynch coached the Tigers to an 8-2 mark in 2004, including a 14-7 win in the Monon Bell game rivalry with Wabash. DePauw has lost four Monon Bell games in a row. He begins his duties Jan. 2 when he will take over for interim head coach Scott Srnka, who remains on the staff. Srnka took over when Robby Long was fired in mid-September.
“The years ahead present an exciting opportunity and I can’t wait to work with a great group of student-athletes, an outstanding athletics department and a supportive administration,” said Lynch.
“DePauw is a special place and the time I spent here was a highlight of my coaching career.”
Lynch is a 1977 Butler graduate and has served as the associate athletic director for development at his alma mater since March 2011. In that role he was responsible for athletics annual giving through the Bulldog Club and served as a major gift officer for athletics. He also was the sport administrator for the football program.
"Through a comprehensive and thorough search process which yielded a strong pool of candidates, we’re excited to have someone with Bill’s experience and passion to lead our football program," said Baker-Watson, who serves as the Theodore A. Katula Director of Athletics and Recreational Sports.
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"Bill is well known and respected in Indiana and the Midwest and understands the long, rich tradition of the DePauw football program.”
“Bill’s character and record of success speaks for itself,” added president Brian W. Casey.
“From his commitment to the academic success of his student-athletes to his career as one of Indiana’s most respected coaches, I look forward to what his leadership will bring to Tiger football in the many years ahead.”
Lynch has coached on the collegiate level for 32 years in addition to one year on the staff of the USFL’s Orlando Renegades. In his 18 seasons as a head coach, Lynch’s teams have accumulated a 100-97-3 overall record including a 44-14-3 (.746) in six seasons at Butler and DePauw.
DePauw junior captain Patrick Keller was among the student-athletes who met with Lynch during the interview process.
“Coach Lynch’s experience and commitment to success were apparent during our meeting,” Keller said. “This is an important time for the DePauw football program and we can’t wait to start working towards moving the program forward.”
In December 2003, Lynch was named DePauw’s head football coach, succeeding Nick Mourouzis, who coached the Tigers for the previous 23 years. Lynch led the Tigers to an 8-2 record in 2004 including a 14-7 victory over Wabash in the Monon Bell game. He was named the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Co-Coach of the Year and was the first football coach in SCAC history to earn the honor in his initial season.
The 2004 Tigers ranked 16th in NCAA Division III rushing offense after averaging 254.6 rushing yards per game. DePauw’s 2,546 rushing yards was just two yards shy of the school record and the Tigers’ averages of 5.0 yards per rushing play and 5.8 yards per offensive play still rank second in program history. Additionally, under Lynch's tutelage, seven DePauw players earned all-SCAC first team honors and wide receiver JaMarcus Shephard was one of only two Division III players invited to the 2005 Hula Bowl Maui All-Star Classic.
In January 2005, Lynch was named the associate head coach and offensive coordinator at Indiana where he joined longtime friend and head coach Terry Hoeppner. Under Lynch’s leadership, Indiana quarterback Kellen Lewis posted one of the best freshman campaigns in program history, ranking 21st in the nation in total offense and third among freshmen with 242.0 yards per game. As a team, the Hoosiers scored their most points (277) since 2001, averaging 335.9 yards and 222.1 passing yards per game.
The interim head coach for two games during the 2006 season, Lynch was named the head coach in June 2007 just days before coach Hoeppner passed away after battling cancer. Lynch directed Indiana to a 7-6 record in 2007 and a berth in the Insight Bowl. The only head coach in Indiana history to guide his team to a bowl game in his first season, Lynch was just the fourth coach in the program’s history to lead a team to a postseason game. Furthermore, the seven victories in his debut season were the second most for a first-year Hoosiers head coach.
In his four seasons in Bloomington, Lynch added a pair of “I’s” to the Old Oaken Bucket chain, defeating Purdue in 2007 and 2010.
Lynch mentored three all-Americans, one Academic All-America® selection, seven first team all-Big Ten selections, 74 academic all-Big Ten honorees and a Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient. Additionally, the Hoosiers produced two Ted Hendricks Award finalists as well as finalists for the Lou Groza Award, the Biletnikoff Award and the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award.
A four-year letter winner in both football and basketball and captain of each at Butler, Lynch earned all-America honors as the Bulldogs’ quarterback and was the first Butler student-athlete to twice earn the Indiana Collegiate Conference’s prestigious Tony Hinkle Award presented for both outstanding scholastic and athletic achievement. He was inducted into the school’s hall of fame in 2000.
After graduation, Lynch spent seven seasons as a Bulldog assistant coach, including stints as the quarterbacks and wide receivers coach, recruiting coordinator and offensive coordinator.
He moved on to Northern Illinois as quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator in 1984, and was the quarterbacks coach of the USFL's Orlando Renegades in 1984. Lynch returned to his alma mater as head coach in 1985 and compiled a 36-12-3 (.735) record over five seasons. Four of Lynch's five squads were ranked among the top 20 in NCAA Division II, and Lynch twice earned American Football Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year accolades.
At Ball State, Lynch served as the Cardinals' assistant head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 1990-92 before serving as quarterbacks coach at Indiana from 1993-94.
Lynch returned to Ball State as head football coach in 1995 and served in that capacity until 2002. The Cardinals won the 1996 Mid-American Conference title and participated in the Las Vegas Bowl, while the 2001 squad finished as co-champions of the MAC West Division. The Ball State program was recognized from 2000-02 by the AFCA for outstanding graduation rates.