Chowan gets new football coach

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 17, 2008

MURFREESBORO, N.C.-Tim Place, the former head football coach at Urbana University, has been hired as the new head football coach at Chowan University and took the reigns on Wednesday, three days before the team’s Blue and White scrimmage.

Place, 40, replaces Lorick Atkinson, who resigned in February. Atkinson was 4-27 in his three years at Chowan. Atkinson moved the program from NCAA Division III to Division II.

Offensive line coach Omar Nesbit has been handling the operations of the program and will lead the team during the first few days of spring practice.

&uot;The first few days were to be primarily focused on conditioning and in helmets only,&uot; said Nesbit.

The team suited up in full pads on April 12, &uot;and then have a Blue and White scrimmage on the 19th in conjuction with the Jim Garrison Golf Tournament,&uot; Nesbit said.

The Hawks are coming off a 2-9 season in 2007. Both wins came in overtime.

Chowan will open 2008 as a member of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, playing in the Western Division. The Hawks open the season at Elizabeth City State University on Aug. 30.

Place has a vast and diverse football coaching background and is no stranger to building a program. Most recently Place served as the head coach at Urbana, a liberal arts university in Urbana, Ohio, where he tallied an 11-11 record over the past two seasons.

At Urbana he breathed new life into the program after taking over as interim head coach in the summer of 2006. He guided that 2006 team to a 4-1 start and was ranked as high as 10th in the NAIA national rankings.

Last season Place led the team to only its second winning season in program history after finishing at 6-5.

For six consecutive weeks the 2007 squad was ranked in the NAIA's Top 25.

Over his two-year tenure as head coach at Urbana, Place saw 23 student-athletes named all-conference, two student-athletes garner NAIA All-America Honors, and two student-athletes be named to the NAIA Football All-America Scholar-Athlete team.