CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Coe College football defensive coordinator Larry Atwater has retired after 27 years with the Kohawks, Director of Athletics John Chandler announced Friday.
Atwater has been a staple of the Kohawk Athletic Department, serving as an assistant football coach for 27 years and the head wrestling coach for 11 years. During his tenure, the Kohawk football team was 196-81, while he compiled a 59-90-1 record as head wrestling coach.
"I would like to personally thank Larry for the time he has given to Coe College Athletics, first as the head coach for wrestling/assistant coach for football to his recent position as the defensive Coordinator," Chandler said. "Throughout, Larry has maintained an aggressive teaching load, while also recruiting student-athletes to Coe. We wish Larry well in his teaching duties and look forward to continuing to see him in Eby Fieldhouse."
In his time as a football coach, the Kohawks won 71 percent of their games under four different head coaches. The Kohawks won nine Midwest Conference and Iowa Conference Championships, while making eight appearances in the NCAA Division III Playoffs. In 10 of Atwater's 27 seasons, the Kohawks were undefeated or lost one game in the regular season.
"I've been privileged to be a part of the Kohawk Athletic Department for the last 27 years," Atwater said. "I have truly valued the relationships made with other coaches and student-athletes at Coe and I will miss that."
Atwater had the privilege of coaching both sons on the defensive side of the ball, with Jordan graduating in 2014 and Mark graduating in 2016. On top of coaching both sons, each spent time on the coaching staff on defense with their father upon graduation.
"I have to give a lot of credit to my family, but especially my wife, Sue," Atwater added. "My family gave up a lot of time to allow me to influence the lives of so many others. I'll always be indebted to Sue for her unconditional support."
Atwater is a 1982 graduate from Coe, where he was a member of the Kohawk football, wrestling and track teams. In his senior season, he threw for 1,615 yards and 16 touchdowns, while leading the nation with a 53.5 completion percentage.
"It has truly been a pleasure and honor to have had the opportunity to work with and play for such an amazing man," Head Coach Tyler Staker said. "I have learned a great amount of football from Coach Atwater, both as a player and a coach. Larry has always kept the game in perspective, and he's been a shining example of the importance of developing relationships. I am so grateful to Larry for the tremendous impact he has made on me, the Kohawk football program and the countless number of young men he's coached throughout his 27 years at Coe."
Atwater will remain at Coe as a professor in the Physical Education Department.