Former UNC kicker Bigelow hired as Fossil football coach – The Coloradoan
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New Fossil Ridge High School football coach Zak Bigelow is having a pretty big week.
The former University of Northern Colorado player accepted a job to move him to what he calls the “greatest city in the world.” More importantly, his wife is due this week with their first child.
He’ll remember this one for a while.
Poudre School District athletic director Ron Alexander announced Bigelow’s hiring at Fossil Ridge on Monday afternoon. Bigelow most recently served as the assistant director of operations for the Oregon State football team (2015-16). He replaces Brian Tinker, who led the SaberCats the previous two seasons.
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“I think they’ve got a load of talent there that I want to build on,” the 28-year-old Bigelow said. “I don’t want to blow up the whole system. I think there’s a good foundation, I want to keep going in the right direction.”
He previously served as the director of operations and assistant coach at UNC in Greeley, where he played from 2006-09. He’s originally from Littleton and attended Dakota Ridge High School.
“Zak was chosen from an outstanding pool of candidates that applied for this position,” Alexander said in a press release. “The combination of Zak’s character, passion, leadership and wealth of football experience led the hiring committee and myself to choose Zak as the next leader of the SaberCat football program. As impressive as Zak is on the field, he is even more impressive as a leader of young people. We are pleased to have Zak as a part of the PSD family.”
Bigelow also spent nearly three years as a graduate assistant at the University of Tulsa. He was a three-year letter-winner at UNC. His wife, Denise Kintzley, is a graduate of Poudre High School.
He’ll remain in Oregon for the next month, with his timeline to move to Fort Collins a little bit in flux based on the birth of their child. Bigelow says he watched film of every Fossil Ridge game last season.
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Fossil Ridge told Tinker in late March that the school would not be renewing his contract after two seasons in charge. Fossil Ridge went 5-5 each year under Tinker, making the Class 5A playoffs in each. After his removal, group of about 40 players protested the district’s decision.
Principal Will Allen said the “decision to move in a new direction was based upon the difference of vision and leadership that I expect for our football program.”
Chris Tedford served as the interim coach after Tinker’s removal and Bigelow said Tedford will remain on staff.
Ken Denning resigned as Fossil Ridge athletic director April 20, saying “The current direction of the athletics in the district have caused a philosophical dilemma for me, which I think has led to this decision.” Denning wasn’t on the search committee for the new coach. He’ll continue in his role through June 9.
The hiring committee was led by Alexander, who has resigned from his position due to family reasons. Alexander will continue in his role as district AD through June 30.
Follow sports reporter Kevin Lytle at twitter.com/Kevin_Lytle and at facebook.com/KevinSLytle.