SMSU FOOTBALL: SMSU announces new defensive coordinator

Todd Strop takes over to lead Mustangs defense

MARSHALL – Southwest Minnesota State University head football coach Cory Sauter announced today the hiring of Todd Strop as the team’s new defensive coordinator.

Strop comes to SMSU with more than 20 years of high school and collegiate coaching experience, including serving as defensive coordinator at two programs in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference as well as three seasons as head coach at the Division III level.

“Coach Strop brings a ton of experience to the Mustang football program,” Sauter said. “His passion, intensity, and commitment to excellence was very evident during the entire interview process. Coach Strop’s defenses have thrived everywhere he has been, including a national championship at the Division II level. There’s no doubt in my mind that Coach Strop will be a great fit for our program and I know our players will be excited to play for him.”

Prior to joining the SMSU staff, Strop’s last coaching position was serving as defensive coordinator at Augsburg College in 2015.

Before taking over at Augsburg, he was the defensive coordinator at Concordia-St. Paul in 2013 and 2014, which included a pair of five-win seasons. He helped coach All-American defensive end, Zach Moore, a 2014 draft pick by the New England Patriots.

Prior to CSP, Strop was the defensive coordinator at Minnesota Duluth in 2010 and 2011. He helped construct a Bulldog defense that led the country in fewest points allowed (12.7) as UMD captured the program’s second NCAA national championship in 2010. The program produced five All-American defensive players, and nine All-NSIC first team selections with Strop at the helm of the defense. In 2011, UMD ranked seventh in the nation in total defense (275.1) and 11th in rushing defense (101.5).

Prior to joining the UMD staff, Strop was an assistant coach at the University of South Dakota from 2008-09. After serving as special teams coordinator and linebackers coach in 2008, he was promoted to defensive coordinator for the 2009 season. He was also defensive coordinator at Hamline University in 2007 at the Division III level.

From 1998-2006, Strop served as an assistant coach and then head coach at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. He was the program’s defensive coordinator from 1998-2003, before taking over as head coach in 2004 and leading the program to a pair of winning seasons.

Strop began his coaching career as defensive backs coach at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville in 1992-93, before serving as defensive backs coach at Ohio University in 1994.

Strop’s first head coaching position was at Durand High School in Wisconsin from 1995-97.

He is a 1992 graduate of the University of Wisconsin with a degree in history and was a two-year letter winner at defensive back for the Badger football team. He earned his master’s degree in athletic administration from Ohio University in 1994.

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