Tahlequah Daily Press

NSU Sports

June 24, 2014

Messinger, Simoneau round out NSU football staff

Robinson adds former Washburn coaches to lead secondary, quarterbacks

Northeastern State football coach Rob Robinson has announced the completion of his full-time staff with the addition of two new assistant coaches.

Robert Messinger has been hired as both the recruiting coordinator and special team’s coordinator, and he will also be in charge of the secondary. Dane Simoneau has been added to coach the quarterbacks.

“Both of these guys are going to bring a lot of energy to the program. I know both of them and I trust in their ability to help us win here,” Robinson said. “I was with Dane for five years and Rob for three, and I’ve kept in contact with both of them. These guys both know what it takes to win, and I think the players are going to respond positively to their energy.”

Messinger comes to Tahlequah after having spent the past season as the co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Ottawa University in Ottawa, Kansas. The Braves are members of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and compete in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference. Messinger helped lead the 2013 squad to an 8-4 record and an appearance in the NAIA Football Championship Series.

He also coached at Ottawa from 2006-08, serving as the junior varsity head coach and offensive coordinator.

“I am excited about the opportunity to work with Coach Robinson again. We built a close relationship when we were both at Washburn, and we have continued to stay in contact,” Messinger said. “The location of Tahlequah and the school itself are big reasons why I wanted to continue my career at NSU. There is also great high school football in Oklahoma, especially in the Tulsa area.”

Messinger worked from 2010-12 at the University of Miami in Miami, Florida. The Hurricanes are members of the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision and compete in the Atlantic Coast Conference. He was the coordinator of football operations from 2011-12 and was a volunteer assistant in 2010.

Prior to moving to Miami, he served as the defensive backs coach and recruiting coordinator at Washburn University from 2008-11.

“I’m excited to be back in the MIAA, which is bar none the best NCAA Division II football conference in the country,” Messinger said. “I always enjoy working at a school that has outstanding competition. I hope I am able to bring my enthusiasm and knowledge of the game to the NSU program.”

He received a Bachelor of Science degree in sociology from the University of Kansas, where he also played defensive back. He went on to earn a Master of Education degree from Washburn.

“Rob’s biggest attribute will be special teams. He did a lot of special team work at the University of Miami, and he is very detailed in that area,” Robinson said. “As the recruiting coordinator, he’s going to bring some things from both Miami and Washburn to try to help us get done what we’re trying to do at this level.”

Simoneau spent the past two years playing quarterback and serving as the offensive coordinator for the Salina Bombers of the Champions Professional Indoor Football League. He led the 2013 squad to a 9-3 record and an appearance in the Champions Bowl. He was also named the 2013 CPIFL Offensive MVP.

“I’m very excited to be at NSU and I’m thankful for this opportunity. Northeastern State is a great college to work at in a great community,” Simoneau said. “I’m looking forward to working with the players. I’ve worked with a lot of QB coaches and learned a lot of stuff throughout my career. I will do my best to take what I’ve learned and make NSU’s quarterbacks better.”

Simoneau served as a graduate assistant coach at Washburn from 2012-13, coaching both the quarterbacks and tight ends.

“I wanted to bring in Dane from the very start. He’s a winner,” Robinson said. “He’s not a rah-rah guy, but players will go to bat for him. I know our quarterbacks will be in good hands with him. You need somebody that has played the position, so it was huge being able to bring in a guy with his experience and expertise.”

Simoneau played for the Ichabods from 2007-11, where he started 42 of 43 games and recorded the most proficient passing career in Washburn history. The five-time consensus All-American finished his senior season second in Harlon Hill voting with school records of 4,089 yards and 38 touchdowns. He also earned the MIAA’s Offensive Player of the Year as well as regional player of the year honors.

Simoneau finished his collegiate career 12th in NCAA Division II history with 11,291 yards passing and 15th on the all-time charts with 102 passing touchdowns. He left school with 35 Ichabod career, season and single-game records, including the top three passing seasons in school history.

“Coaching a position you played is always easier. I feel like I will be able to communicate with the quarterbacks on a different level because I can tell them how I saw those same situations when I played,” Simoneau said. “Quarterback is obviously an important position in football because they make the offense go. I believe we have talent at that position here at NSU.”

He received a bachelor of art degree in kinesiology from Washburn in 2013.

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