Harrison named new head football coach at Bethel

Bethel Sports
Josh Booth, Sports Information Director

NORTH NEWTON – Bethel College has announced the hiring of Terry Harrison as the next head coach of the Bethel football program.

Athletic Director Tony Hoops announced the hire on Dec. 18, following the resignation of Morris Lolar on Nov. 21.

“We are extremely excited to name Terry Harrison the next head football coach of Bethel College,” Hoops said. “Terry comes from one of the top high school football programs in all of the state of Kansas at Wichita Heights. He’s proven himself to be very successful coaching at a high level and we look forward to seeing him bring the same high standards of excellence to Bethel. Coach Harrison is simply a winner, and we are very fortunate to have him here at Bethel.”

Terry Harrison comes to Bethel from Wichita Heights High School, where he was the Falcons’ head coach since November of 2012. In five seasons with the team, he has been able to compile an overall record of 38-16, winning four Kansas 5A regional championships, a district championship, and a Greater-Area Wichita-League championship along the way. He was also named the 2016 City-League Coach of the Year after leading his team to a 9-2 record.

“Terry brings so many different attributes to this position,” Hoops said. “As at Sterling graduate, he knows and understands what it takes to be successful within the KCAC. The staff that he already has hired is outstanding and ready to get to work immediately. They know and understand the KCAC recruiting landscape. He’s a tremendous leader in so many different ways which will impact this football program in all areas for many years to come.”

“I would like to thank Athletic Director Tony Hoops and the entire Bethel College Community for this opportunity,” Harrison said. “I am excited for the future of Thresher Football and the common goals that we all have for the program moving forward.”

Since the departure of Coach Lolar, the football program has been directed under the guidance of James McCartney. McCartney took on the role of Interim Head Coach after spending last two seasons as the defensive line coach.

“I want to also thank James McCartney for serving as the interim head coach during this time of transition,” Hoops said. “He did an outstanding job in providing leadership for this program.”

Before becoming the head coach at Wichita Heights, Harrison spent a season as an assistant with the Falcons’ football program, learning under the noted Coach Rick Wheeler.

“I am a product of this conference and humbled by the opportunity to lead this program,” Harrison said. “The most exciting part of this process was the opportunity to meet several current players.  I look forward to getting to work with them and build something that they can be proud of here at Bethel College.”

From 2006 to 2012, Harrison was an assistant coach for the Valley Center Hornets football team. He began as the offensive line coach from 2006-09, and then was promoted to defensive coordinator for 2010-12.

Harrison is a 2004 graduate of Sterling College in Sterling, Kansas. He received his Bachelor of Sciences in Physical Education & Health from the institution, where he also served as a three-year team captain for the Warriors football program. After his senior season at Sterling, Harrison spent the next year as a grad assistant in the program, serving as offensive line coach.

Joining Harrison on his staff are Paul Kempf and A.B. Stokes. Kempf has been an assistant under Harrison for the last four years, and was on staff with Sterling College the two seasons prior. Stokes has spent the last six seasons as head coach at Larned High School.

“I would not have taken this job without the ability to hire assistant coaches who are men of integrity.  I am excited to announce that Paul Kempf will be joining me as Defensive Coordinator and A.B. Stokes will be joining my staff as Offensive Coordinator.  Both of these men are products of the KCAC and will be excellent representatives of Bethel College.”

Harrison also brings with him the experience of coordinating and organizing the Wichita Area Recruiting Fair, a yearly event for collegiate scouts and coaches to meet with football players in the Wichita metro area. He has also been a guest speaker at multiple coaching clinics on a national level, most recently being the Tulsa Glazier Mega Clinic, held in 2016.

“Our priority will not only be to put a product on the field that the Bethel College community can be proud of, but most importantly, produce young men that represent the core values of Bethel College and use football as a vehicle to earn a degree.”

Harrison attained his Masters of Sciences in School Leadership from Baker University in 2011.

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