Oct. 01, 2016
Last night, the news broke that Tim Lester would be returning to his alma mater to become the football coach at Western Michigan. Earlier this morning, Western Michigan introduced their new head football coach to the media.
Lester is coming to Western Michigan after being the quarterbacks coach at Purdue. This isn't Lester's first go-around with the Broncos. Lester played quarterback for Western Michigan between 1996 and 1999. The 1999 season was a large talking point throughout the morning for Tim Lester.
Throughout his career, Lester set 17 school records. He threw for 11,299 yards and 87 yards throughout his collegiate career in Kalamazoo.
Lester's collegiate coaching career began in 2004 at Saint Joesph's College; an NCAA Division II school in Indiana.
In 2005, Lester returned to Western Michigan as the quarterbacks coach. When he returned to Western Michigan, he was reunited with the new Bronco's head coach, Bill Cubit. Cubit was Lester's quarterback coach and offensive coordinator from 1997-1999.
In 2008, Lester returned home to Illinois to take over as the head football coach at Elmhurst College. In 2012, Lester was named the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin coach of the year after leading the Bluejay's to the first NCAA playoff appearance in school history. The 2012 conference championship was also the first for Elmhurst College since 1980.
In 2013, Lester left Elmhurst College to become the quarterbacks coach and recruiting coordinator at Syracuse University. On October 6, 2014, Lester was promoted to offensive coordinator for Syracuse.
In December 2015, Lester was named quarterbacks coach at Purdue University. Throughout the 2016 season, Lester coached David Blough, who lead the Big Ten at 279.3 yards per game.
Lester inherits the Western Michigan Broncos after a 13-0 and a trip the the Cotton Bowl where they eventually lost to the University of Wisconsin.
There have been mixed emotions from Western Michigan surrounding the hire of Tim Lester. Some fans feel that Western Michigan should have hired someone who is more well known nationally. When asked about this at the press conference on Saturday morning, Lester said, "They said the same thing when they hired P.J. Fleck... He handled himself pretty well I thought." When Western Michigan hired Fleck, he was just 32 years old and had never been a coordinator or head coach before.
Lester was a candidate for the head coaching job 4 years ago before eventually being passed on for P.J. Fleck.
Throughout the time between the departure of P.J. Fleck and the hiring of Tim Lester, 9 Western Michigan recruits had jumped on the boat and had rowed their way to Minnesota. Lester said several times that they won't sign players just to sign players. Lester wants to sign players who will fit with the culture of Western Michigan football. Lester also talked several times about the "6 hour radius" of which Western Michigan will use to continue recruiting new talent.
When Lester was asked about his first meeting with his new team last night. "They understand that winning isn't normal. They don't want to be normal."