CWU Football encounters coaching carousel

Austin Lane, Sports Editor

The offensive and defensive coordinator positions are being filled for CWU football after the departure of two coaches this offseason. Defensive coordinator Ivan Cordova was released and offensive coordinator Kelly Bills resigned.

CWU head coach Chris Fisk announced Saturday morning that Bills resigned, effective immediately. 

After one season at CWU, Bills is taking over as the offensive coordinator for Dixie State University, a program that will be making the jump from Division II to Division I-FCS next fall.

Fisk said the administration, coaching staff and team were thankful of Bills for his time, dedication and production as the offensive coordinator at CWU. Fisk also said the team wishes Bills the best at Dixie State.

“It’s hard,” Fisk said. “I brought him up here as my first hire as a head coach and [we are] very good friends on top of colleagues working together, so it was tough to hear the news, but it’s also part of the profession. He had an opportunity to do something that he thought was better for his family, which I respect.”

With Bills on staff last season, CWU’s offense finished first in the GNAC and 10th in Division II in average points per game, with 41.8. CWU also finished first in the GNAC and eighth in Division II in average total yards per game, with 504.7.

Cordova was the defensive coordinator for CWU from 2018-19. Under Cordova last season, CWU’s defense was second in the GNAC in average points allowed per game, with 29.6. They were also second in the GNAC in average yards allowed per game, with 399.0.

Daily Record Sports Editor Luke Olson said in a tweet on Feb. 5 that CWU hired Nate Johnson for the defensive coordinator position. In 2019, Johnson was the safeties coach for Stephen F. Austin (SFA), a Division I-FCS team located in Texas. Last season, SFA allowed 34.92 average points per game and 453.0 average yards per game.

Fisk said the new opening for the offensive coordinator position has been filled, but could not comment until early next week on who it is until they sign a contract.