Bluejay & Lady Jay Athletics
Bluejay Football: Coaching Staff
Jeff Linder is entering his 22nd year as head coach of the Minnesota West Bluejays. Coach Linder has been the recipient of the Southern Division Coach of the Year award six times. In addition, he was named by the Minnesota Vikings as the 2004 College Coach of the Year. Coach Linder is a graduate of Worthington High School and Worthington Community College. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Physical Education from Bemidji State University and a Masters of Sport Management from the United States Sports Academy.
Community Volunteer, Wide Receivers
Steve Bassett is in his 16th year as a community volunteer with the Bluejays. He played football for the Bluejays in 1969 prior to being drafted by the United States Army. Coach Bassett then served two years in Korea. He also coaches softball at Minnesota West.
Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
Ben DeVries enters his 10th season as offensive line coach and 1st as offensive coordinator for the Bluejays. Ben played football for the Bluejays in 2000-01 and then went on to coach at Spirit Lake High School 2003-04. He joined the Bluejay coaching staff in 2005. He also coaches in the SPFL and has won six consecutive championships and two national championships.
Backs and Quarterbacks
Brad Holinka enters his 6th season as an assistant coach with the Bluejays. Brad was a three-sport athlete at Minnesota West. After two years as a Bluejay, Brad continued his athletic career at Mankato State University as a member of their football team. Brad received a degree in Physical Education and is in his 34th year of teaching at Fulda High School.
Backs and Linebackers
Tyler Skow rejoins the Minnesota West coaching staff for his 3rd season after previously serving as assistant to former defensive coordinator Scott Barber. Coach Skow is a 2005 graduate of Jackson County Central where here played offensive line and defensive linebacker. He was named to the All-Conference team. Skow continued his football career at Minnesota West where he was a starting linebacker for the 2005 and 2006 seasons and was named to the All–MCCC team both seasons.
Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Line
Bernie Strouth is in his 11th year coaching the defensive line. He has 29 years of total football coaching experience including being the head coach at Kimberly High School in Kimberly, Idaho, head coach and athletic director at DeSales High School in Walla Walla, Washington, and head coach at Plankinton High School in Plankinton, S.D. He also served as an assistant at Billings Central High School in Billings, Montana and at Bishop Kelly High School in Boise, Idaho. Strouth has a B. A. degree from Boise State University and a Master of Sports Science degree from the United States Sports Academy. He teaches Social Studies at Worthington High School.
Joel Krekelberg “Krek” is in his 30th season as athletic trainer for the Bluejays. After graduating from Mankato State University in 1978, he spent two summers with the New Orleans Saints. Following that, he worked seven years with the NFL Houston Oilers. In 1985, he returned to Worthington where he is a real estate appraiser. Krekelberg is the athletic trainer for all sports at Minnesota West as well as for Worthington High School.