|Wisconsin Lutheran athletics photo|
Wisconsin Lutheran head football coach and defensive coordinator Ben Murphy, who completed his first season as the Warriors' head coach in 2013, has announced that he is stepping down from his position following the 2013-2014 academic year due to family obligations. Murphy will remain on the coaching staff as a part-time defensive assistant coach.
"I have decided to reduce my role with the team," said Murphy. "I believe changing my role will allow for me to have a much better balance of being a husband and father, while still doing the thing I love most about coaching, being a positive influence for the players."
In his first and only season as head coach, Murphy guided the Warriors to a 4-6 overall record, including a 3-3 conference mark for fourth place in the seven-team league. Four of the teams' six defeats came by an average of 5.75 points, including two heartbreaking setbacks on the road in overtime.
In each of Murphy's six seasons directing the defense, WLC ranked in the top three in total defense in the NACC, ranking first in the conference twice (2012, 2009). In 2012, the Warriors defense led NCAA Division III in passing defense, allowing just 123 passing yards per game. The defense also ranked fourth in Division III in total defense (232 yards allowed per game), fifth in pass efficiency defense, and seventh in scoring defense (13 points per game allowed).
Murphy mentored nine players to all-conference honors in his first season as head coach. Since taking over as defensive coordinator six seasons ago, Murphy coached 34 defensive players to all-conference honors, including two conference Defensive Players of the Year in Luke Sebald (2013) and Kaylan Gaines (2010).
A search to fill the coaching vacancy is underway.