From the Manchester College Archives

News Release

 Dec. 30, 2003

Manchester College 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 football program."

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 III.

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 All-State quarterback.

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.




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