/notables/2016/12/catholic-brings-alumnus-back

Catholic U. brings alum back as head coach

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Catholic is looking for a fresh start by bringing back an alumnus from the 1990s, Mike Gutelius, as the Cardinals head into a new conference next fall.

Catholic University welcomes home Mike Gutelius, a 1992 graduate, who was tabbed as the 30th head football coach in program history, as announced by Associate Vice President & Athletics Director Sean Sullivan on Thursday.

Gutelius replaces Bill Bachman, who served as interim coach this season following the resignation of 10-year head coach David Dunn. The Cardinals were 3-7 this past season, 0-7 in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. It was Catholic's final year in the ODAC, as the program will join seven New England schools and play football in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference starting next fall.

Gutelius boasts more than two decades of coaching experience, including 14 years as a coordinator. He most recently served as a defensive coordinator for a Lindsey Wilson College (Ky.) team that has made three straight NAIA football playoff appearances and the achieved program's first-ever No. 1 national ranking. He was selected as the 2015 American Football Coaches Association NAIA Assistant of the Year.

"I'm thrilled to have Mike return to Catholic as our head football coach," said Sullivan. "I am extremely impressed with his insights on college sports, football and academic success, and his philosophy of developing student-athletes into the complete person. He clearly has a passion and respect for the game, and as an alum, knows the importance of the values associated with Catholic University."

Gutelius comes to Catholic after seven seasons at Lindsey Wilson where he helped restart a program and built it back to prominence after a 75-year hiatus. Over the past four seasons, the Blue Raiders have gone 37-11 overall. This season, the team went 11-2, the most wins in program history, and added a No. 6 national ranking and a NAIA FCS quarterfinals appearance.

Before Lindsey Wilson, Gutelius spent six seasons as assistant head coach and defensive coordinator at Concord (W.Va.). He also developed, organized and managed the team's academic success program.

Prior to Concord, Gutelius spent two seasons as defensive ends coach at Wingate (N.C.). He has also coached at Division III schools La Verne and St. Norbert. Additionally, Gutelius has also coached at Catholic. He joined the staff immediately after graduation and spent one season as in assistant coach in 1992.

I am very grateful for the opportunity to be the head football coach at The Catholic University of America. I would like to thank President John Garvey and Mr. Sean Sullivan for their confidence in my leadership of this program and I cannot wait to work," said Gutelius. "To be able to go back to your alma mater and teach young men the enduring life lessons that I learned while I played here is humbling. I feel a huge sense of responsibility to help these guys grow through the sport of football and to be able to do that job at this unique place is a lifelong dream of mine."  

In 2015 his defense allowed just 224 points throughout the season, the lowest in program history. Gutelius helped lead the Blue Raiders to a 10-3 record in 2014 – then the most wins in program history. He helped guide Lindsey Wilson to the program's first Mid-South Conference East Division title, first NAIA postseason appearance and the first NAIA playoff victory.

His defense helped Lindsey Wilson set a new school record for most interceptions (29) and sacks (33.5) in a single season in 2014, while recording an NAIA-best 45 takeways throughout the year. For his efforts, Gutelius was named an AFCA Assistant Coach of the Year finalist.

Gutelius also serves as the football program's community and outreach coordinator and in 2013 Lindsey Wilson was presented with the 2013-14 Buffalo Funds Five Star Champions of Character Team Award at the American Football Coaches' Association Convention in Indianapolis, Ind.

"We will begin right away on installing the process that will establish the standards and benchmarks for our success. I shared during my interview that our success will never be a point on a timeline, but will be found in the steps taken and the decisions made in the process of getting better every day," said Gutelius. "Every person that I came into contact with during the interview process approached his or her job from the position of how best to serve the student body. The football program will be no different. It will always be our goal to help these student-athletes who play football at The Catholic University of America to grow into the men God wants them to be."

Gutelius graduated from Catholic with a major in politics and a minor in philosophy. He went on to earn his master's degree in education with a special emphasis in athletic-educational issues in 2001 from La Verne.

He and his wife, Kimberly, have three children, Michael, Sam and Mary Katherine.

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