From Coach to Unemployed Farmer

By Beacon Staff

If you haven’t read the Bozeman Daily Chronicle’s interview with former Montana State University football coach Mike Kramer, you should. It’s easy to feel sorry for the man who brought the program back to prominence; the poor guy now feels uncomfortable even showing his face around the college town.

According to the report, Kramer “has spent nearly every day since he was fired in May … helping his mother mend the family farm” in Colton, Wash. His other family, meanwhile, remains in Bozeman. His wife Sandi works at the local hospital. One of his daughters is a senior at Bozeman High School; the other works for the city. And Kramer, the man dubbed “The Big Human,” has been crisscrossing the country looking for a new job. He has only returned to Bozeman thrice.

“I don’t think I’ll ever go to a Bobcat game again,” Kramer told the newspaper. “I don’t think it’s in the cards.”

If you haven’t heard (but I bet you have), Kramer was fired in May by MSU after a string of arrests involving a coach and a handful of current and former players, one of whom is charged with murder.

To that end, it’s hard to blame the university for making the coach the fall guy, but many athletic issues at the school – including the football program’s failure to meet NCAA academic standards – involve more than Kramer’s alleged failed leadership. Even Bobcat fans, flying high after a 4-1 start to the season under new head coach Rob Ash, are sympathetic to Kramer’s plight.

I hope he lands on his feet somewhere. “The story of my life the last 400 days has been incredible,” Kramer told the Chronicle. In other words, he deserves a break.