|Loras athletics photo|
Loras athletic director Bob Quinn announced that interim head coach Steve Helminiak would stay on as head football coach for 2014. Helminiak, who was the offensive line coach in 2013, was named interim coach with three games remaining in the regular season upon the resignation of Paul Mierkiewicz.
The Duhawks were 1-9 this past season, losing their final eight games. He takes over a team that scored more than 10 points just once in 2013.
Helminiak has been on staff since 2011. Previously, he was head coach at NAIA Southern Oregon for five seasons, compiling a 15-32 mark. He had been offensive line coach at Loras from 1991-97 and offensive coordinator from 1998-2000.
"Steve has extensive football contacts and experience. At his core, he is an excellent recruiter, teacher, role model and leader," Quinn said. "We've selected him after giving careful consideration to what our current student-athletes need and what the next generation of Loras College football seeks to achieve."
Dan Murray, a senior on the 2013 Duhawk offensive line and co-captain who earned All-IIAC honorable mention in 2013 shared his thoughts.
"Coach Helminiak's leadership style creates a relationship with his players that is positive and inspirational," Murray said. "I have grown tremendously as a person and as an offensive lineman over the past three years. Coach is a great teacher of football and character. I'm confident he is the right person to turn the program around. As a soon-to-be alum, I'm excited to watch it unfold."
Helminiak said: "I am extremely grateful for this opportunity, honored to be named, and humbled by the responsibility. I am extremely excited to continue working with the outstanding young men we currently have in the program and equally excited to recruit quality student-athletes that will not only help to rebuild the Loras football program, but will also contribute to our campus academically, spiritually, and socially."
"I also want to thank my wife Kelli and our children, whose encouragement and support have been crucial. We as a family are thrilled about remaining at Loras College and the Dubuque community. We are a Loras family, and look forward to giving back to Loras College, a place that has given us so much!"
Helminiak is a 1991 graduate of Loras and resides in Dubuque with his wife Kelli ('98) and their five children.