MSU President's Column for Traill County Tribune

February 15, 2020

These are busy and exciting times for Comets Football

As we knew would happen, our new head football coach, Rocky Larson, has hit the ground running. His first day on the job was Tuesday, Feb. 4 and he’s been going non-stop ever since. We’re excited to have had Coach Larson join the Mayville State family and we look forward to great things ahead for Comets Football.

To date, ten young men from the state of North Dakota have signed to play for the Comets this coming fall. Three are from West Fargo High School. On the Minnesota side of the river, three seniors from East Grand Forks have also signed.

Last weekend, Coach Larson and his assistants, Coach Litecky and Coach Flesland, attended the Glazier Clinic in Minneapolis. The mission of the Glazier Clinic is to bring coaches the best coaching education in the country.

While at the clinic, the Comets coaches talked with dozens of high school coaches and promoted Mayville State University. Attending this clinic gave them a nice jump on recruiting current high school juniors for the fall of 2021. In addition, the clinic gave Coach Larson and his assistants an opportunity to meet with staffs from three different colleges. They were able to talk about how they run their programs and learn about how they handle scholarship funding.

Coach Larson has been conducting player meetings this week. While they had one player walk away from the team in the first week, there are a few players who did not play last year, but who are re-thinking their decision and may come back out for the fall 2020 season.

Comets Football hosted recruiting days on Wednesday, Feb. 12 and Thursday, Feb. 13. When I heard from Coach Larson on Feb. 10, he had five students signed up to visit Mayville State on Feb. 12 and six students signed up to visit on Feb. 13. They have a couple more visit days planned for next week, all in an effort to bring high character football players to Mayville State.

In meeting with his staff early in the week, they decided that it will be reasonable for them to establish a team of at least 70 players for the fall of 2020. Coach Larson is hoping to get more than 70, but as a staff, the coaches decided that their bare minimum goal is 70.

Coach Larson brought two assistant coaches with him when he came to Mayville State.

Jake Litecky will lead the Comets defense next year as the defensive coordinator. Coach Litecky and Coach Larson went to college together at the University of Wisconsin River Falls. Coach Larson says that Jake has been with him every step of the way.

Assistant Nick Flesland was a good football player at University of Wisconsin River Falls. Coach Larson got to know Nick even better after he had finished playing and became a student coach for UWRF. Nick will work with the defensive line for the Comets.

Coach Larson retained a couple of the current coaches as well. They are Logan Levy, who has worked very hard and connected in recruiting, will be working with the wide receivers next year. Eric Tonkin was a great tight end at Concordia St. Paul. Coach Larson says Tonkin has been great in helping him to understand scholarships. He is the team’s strength coach and served as the acting head coach for a week. Coach Tonkin has worked on both sides of the football, and Coach Larson is not yet decided where Tonkin’s talents will be put to best use for the Comets in 2020, but he will be a part of the coaching staff.

The Comets coaches will be putting together a spring calendar in the next few weeks. Coach Larson would love to have Mayville State alumni and friends stop by to see for themselves the team that he and his assistants are building for the fall of 2020. Please stop by and check it out.

We look forward to seeing the results of the hard work Coach Larson and his staff are investing into the 2020 team and season. These are exciting times, and we are delighted to have all of the coaching staff, as well as the current players and recruits, as members of the Mayville State family.