Dec. 30, 2003
hires Fort Wayne,
Ball State standout
as football coach
A well-respected recruiter and collegiate assistant
coach who was an Indiana high school All-State/All-Conference
quarterback is Manchester College's new head football coach.
W. Shannon Griffith - who played for Fort Wayne's
Northrop High School in the '80s and was an assistant coach at Ball
State University - will join Manchester College's staff immediately.
Manchester College was attracted to Griffith's
coaching talents and local ties, his recruiting talents and his love of
the game, said Director of Athletics Thomas S. Jarman, adding, "He will
be a good fit here. Shannon's reputation as a player's coach with high
expectations will serve him well in developing the Manchester College
Griffith replaces Dave Harms, who resigned
effective Wednesday, Dec. 31. The opening attracted 58 applicants.
"It's a great opportunity for me and my family to
be associated with as fine an academic institution as Manchester
College," said Griffith. "I am looking to change the image of the
football program within the college environment and the community. It's
a process that will take time and hard work, but in the end will result
in a better overall program."
A search will begin immediately for Griffith's two
assistant coaches. Manchester's current offensive and defensive
coordinators are expected to apply, Jarman said. Manchester is in the
Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) of the NCAA Division
Griffith has 13 years of college coaching
experience at the Division I and Division II levels and played and
coached on two Mid-American Conference championship teams at Ball State.
He is known in Indiana as a recruiter who takes
good care of the athletes he recruits, Jarman said.
As quarterback coach at Ball State, Griffith helped
the team toward the 1996 Mid-American Conference Championship and the
Las Vegas Bowl. He recruited in northern Indiana and northwest Ohio and
southeast Florida. Griffith also is an expert in all areas of football
systems. As video coordinator of the Ball State football program, he
took that digital system to the same level as the pro teams in 2001.
"We are pleased and excited that Shannon Griffith
will lead our football program," said Manchester President Parker G.
Marden. "He understands the NCAA Division III philosophy and he will
produce graduates of Manchester College while winning football games!"
His father, Bill Griffith, is former president of
the Indiana Football Coaches Association and a former elected member of
the IHSAA Board of Directors. Bill Griffith coached at Snider and Wayne
high schools in Fort Wayne, Jeffersonville High School and retired last
year from Churubusco High School.
Shannon Griffith currently is assistant football
coach and a PE teacher at Bishop Kenny High School in Jacksonville, Fla.
The team had a 7-4 regular season and a berth in the Florida High School
Play-Offs. He joined that program as offensive coordinator and
quarterback coach last August.
As a Ball State quarterback, Griffith was a member
of the Mid-American Conference Championship team and participated in the
California Raisin Bowl in 1989. At Northrop High School in Fort Wayne,
he started three years as quarterback and was All-Conference and
During his two years on the staff of Northwood
University in Midland, Mich.,
Griffith was offensive line coach and co-offensive coordinator. His
recruiting territory included western Michigan, northern Indiana, and
Chicago high schools and junior colleges.
Griffith holds a master's degree in athletic
administration and physical education from Ball State, where he received
his bachelor's degree. He and his wife, Kimberly, a speech pathologist,
have two children, Ashley, 11 and Isaac, 9.