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Hoffner hopes to move closer to home

January 28, 2014 - Staff Blog


Staff Writer

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Former Minnesota State-Mankato coach Todd Hoffner had plenty of reasons to apply for Minot State’s football coaching vacancy. The reason nearest and dearest to his heart is the opportunity to visit his parents, Leo and Arlene, more often.

Hoffner, one of three finalists for the MSU job, grew up in Esmond, N.D., where his folks still reside. He graduated from Esmond High School in 1984 before attending Valley City State. He made coaching stops at University of North Dakota, Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Wisconsin-Eau Claire and University of South Dakota before spending 2008-2012 at Mankato. The Magic City measures nearly an hour closer to Esmond than all of his past coaching locations.

“That excites me, being a little bit closer to them,” Hoffner said Monday during the public forum portion of his on-campus interview. “I shouldn’t say a little, a lot closer. Ninety miles is not very far in the state of North Dakota. That’s especially attractive.”

Hoffner hopes to nix the negative connotation of his name that stems from his arrest in 2012 for suspicion of producing and possessing child pornography. The charges were ultimately dismissed, and he garnered copious support from the Mankato community, but was curiously fired in May 2013.

Being hired as MSU’s head coach would provide Hoffner with a clean slate; a chance to show the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference why his teams won three South Division titles and one conference crown under his direction.

A chance to live as close to his parents as he has since high school.

“My parents are still alive and hopefully they’re alive for a very long time (knock on wood),” Hoffner said. “They’re in their lower-80s and I learned a lot of great, valuable lessons from them about hard work, perseverance and just being able to be a good person and do good things.”

Ryan Holmgren covers Minot State athletics. Follow him on Twitter @ryanholmgren.


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