“It is what it is,” said Moller in a phone interview with the Times Thursday morning. “I was left two options and neither were left staying and coaching."
The University of Minnesota, Crookston announced late Wednesday afternoon that Charles “Chuck” Moller has resigned as head football coach for the Golden Eagles. Moller was named head football coach for the Golden Eagles in December of 2010. He had been hired on a one-year contract.
“It is what it is,” said Moller in a phone interview with the Times Thursday morning. “I was left two options and neither were left staying and coaching. Steph Helgeson and Chancellor Casey asked that I not speak with the team and I agreed. That's where I'm at.
“It’s mutual and I don't want to villify anybody,” Moller continued. “Nobody wants to stick around where they're not wanted. My drive for a football team is different than others and I'm exploring other opportunities. It’s not anything dark or anything like that. There’s room for improvement on both sides.
“I enjoyed the community and the people,” Moller went on to add. “I believe we brought in a good product and it’s a work in progress.”
Athletic Director Steph Helgeson said the assistant coaches are out in parts of Wisconsin and Minnesota recruiting. Helgeson and Assistant Athletic Director for Facilities and Operations Gary Warren addressed the football team immediately following the announcement to the media.
“If allowed to speak with the team I would tell them that I care for them and love them and I wish them success athletically and academically,” said Moller, who added, “They are free to give me a call anytime.”
Effective immediately, Assistant Football Coach Paul Miller, who served the Golden Eagles this season as offensive coordinator, will step in as interim head football coach.
“We appreciate Coach Moller’s contributions to our program over this past year,” said Helgeson, “and we wish him and his family the best in the future."
Helgeson added that Moller's departure is unfortunate but said Miller will provide continuity and stability to the program.
"Paul Miller has experience with the student-athletes," she said. "He has been a head coach and he is a great recruiter. He brings value to the program. We are glad he can step in and keep us moving forward."
Helgeson noted that all of the assistant coaches will remain on staff and will meet with the team on Monday when they return from their recruiting trips.
Moller guided the Golden Eagles to a 1-10 record in his only season at the helm. Under his watch the Golden Eagle offense improved from 9.6 points per game in 2010 to 15.5 points per game this season. The defense improved from allowing 45.1 points per game in 2010 to 38.7 points per game this season, ranking them 13th in the NSIC. In maybe the most significant improvement, the turnover margin improved from -20 in 2010 to just -2 this season, ranking the team 11th in the NSIC.
Miller began his career as a graduate assistant at the University of Minnesota, Morris. He was an assistant coach at the University of St. Thomas and head coach at St. Olaf College and Hamline University.