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Northland Technical College in TRF suspends football program

By Wayne Nelson

Forum News Service

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Northland Community and Technical College on Monday announced that it will suspend its football program effectively immediately.

Steve Crittenden, the Northland campus dean, said the college suspended the program for a number of reasons. Northland competes in the Minnesota College Athletic Conference, a league comprised mainly of Minnesota junior colleges.

Crittenden said budget challenges, Title IX issues, housing challenges and the fact that Northland lost its coach last week were the reasons the college suspended the program.

Merle Johnson last week resigned as the Northland coach to become the North Dakota State College of Science coach. Johnson had coached at Northland for the past three seasons.

The Pioneers have been successful in recent seasons, finishing 7-3 this past season. Northland advanced to the semifinal round of the MCAC playoffs.

Crittenden said the announcement was made at this time so student-athletes in the Northland program could have time to transfer if they wish.

Currently, Crittenden said there are 46 players on the Northland roster. Nine players are from Minnesota.

Northland players were informed of the decision earlier Monday. The decision to suspend the program was announced late Monday afternoon.

Crittenden said there is no firm timetable on whether the school will consider bringing back the program, adding the college will examine the impact of the decision to determine if the program should be reinstated

Forum News Service

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