Catching up with new UMary coach Shann Schillinger

Published: Apr. 3, 2023 at 9:07 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Shann Schillinger started his job as the new head coach at the University of Mary at an interesting time — right in the middle of spring football. He applied, was interviewed, got hired and had an introductory news conference in just a few short days.

“Everything happened so fast,” said Schillinger.

Now, Coach Schillinger says his first order of business is getting to know the guys on his new team.

“I want to prioritize my time with the players first, build relationships with them, ultimately earn their trust before I ask anything else. Finally, at this point in time we’re getting to that,” said Schillinger.

It’s called spring football, but with the way the weather has been, winter football seems like a more appropriate term

“It’s unbelievable, and you look at the forecast at what’s down the pipe, so I told the staff there’s no sense in making too big of plans because by the way it’s looking, you never know,” said Schillinger.

Schillinger says the cliche of “control what you can control” is the proper approach and just take advantage of getting on the field when you can.

“Analyze the roster a little bit and see what areas I think I feel good about after watching a few days, and kind of hear the staff’s thought too and tell the players we’re going to have to bring in some guys in, right, that’s football nowadays. And probably put a priority, after watching for a few practices, we need to bring that position in and bring some depth here, so that’s kind of what I’m doing,” said Schillinger.

Schillinger says for the most part he’s letting the assistant coaches do what they have planned because spring ball started before he was hired.

“I thought it would be counterproductive to try and come in and change terminology, all of that. We’ll have some stuff this summer where we’ll get together, but I didn’t think it was fair to them to come out right away and do that. I thought if I do that they would be slowing down and we wouldn’t get a fair evaluation of them,” said Schillinger. “I’ve been impressed with the assistant coaches that are here. They’ve done a really nice job. There are only three of them here and the way they’ve been able to script practices and run it has been very impressive.”

This is Schillinger’s first head coaching position, but his resume is also very impressive. If you missed it last week, Schillinger was drafted by Atlanta after a standout college career at Montana. Following his NFL days, he started his coaching career at Dickinson State, and he’s been at places like Nebraska, Montana and Mississippi State.

Previous Coverage: Shann Schillinger welcomed as University of Mary football head coach