News - Alumni of GU’s MAE-Coaching Program Claim Media Attention

Alumni of GU’s MAE-Coaching Program Claim Media Attention

By Carla Morris


Several alumni of GU’s Master of Arts in Education-Coaching program made media headlines in 2019, each for different reasons, resulting in a busy year for recognition of GU’s coaching graduates. The alumni represent football, soccer, and track and field.

11-0 Season on the Gridiron for Reiss

In December, The Times Tribune (Scranton, PA) featured Bill Reiss’ success as defensive coordinator for the Lackawanna College Falcons. Reiss, a 2015 graduate of GU’s coaching program, helped guide the team to an 11-0 season, an El Toro Bowl victory, and number six ranking in the National Junior College Athletic Association. 

The Times hailed Reiss’ defenses as consistently “among the best in the National Junior College Athletic Association since he took them over six seasons ago.”

Reiss has coached multiple players who eventually signed with Division I schools. He has also coached players destined for the NFL, most recently Kyzir White, linebacker for the Los Angeles Chargers.

Soccer’s Collins Distinguished as Rising Talent 

United Soccer Coaches named Micah Collins a member of its 2019-20 “30 Under 30” Class. The year-long education and mentorship opportunity supports rising professional coaches age 30 and younger. Collins, assistant men’s soccer coach with Michigan State University, was one of 30 coaches selected from a pool of nearly 300 applicants. 

The 2017 graduate of GU’s coaching program began coaching with MSU in 2018, a banner year for the Spartans. They advanced to the national semifinals for the first time in 50 years.

Collins previously served as graduate assistant coach for the Greenville University Panthers.

Former Panther Kuusisto Named Director

In October University of Minnesota-Morris announced the promotion of former Panther Josh Kuusisto ’14 to director of track and field. Kuusisto previously served the Cougars as assistant coach in track and field and cross country. He is a 2017 graduate of GU’s coaching program. 

In a press release, UMN-Morris said Kuusisto had coached 115 all-conference honorees and nine conference champions since his arrival at UNM-Morris in 2015. A specialist in throws, he guided the Cougars to achieve 126 points at the 2019 UMAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships to help the women take the conference title.

Townsend Shares Expertise

WBOC News, a CBS affiliate, tapped Michel Andy Townsend for his expertise on the importance of Pro Days—special events where recruiters gather stats and preview many NFL draft-eligible players in one location. 

Townsend’s coaching career spans more than 14 years. He has served on the coaching staffs of two national championship teams—Texas A&M Commerce in 2017, and the Navarro Bulldogs in 2010. A number of Townsend’s players have gone on to play for NFL teams. 

Townsend is a 2016 graduate of GU’s coaching program.

Learn More

Little League Legacy: The Inspiration Behind a Career Coach
Running on Gratitude: Double Thanks for Cross-country, Grace, and Coach P
19 Years Coaching and Still Learning for the Girls
GU Coach Brian Patton to Join NCCAA Hall of Fame on May 30
Legacy of Greenville Alumnus “Father of Sport Psychology”

This story was published on February 27, 2020

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