A native of the Worcester area, Geiser was Owens’ top assistant for most of his tenure. This will be his first head coaching job at any level.
Ashland, Ohio — The football program at historic Ashland University officially has a new leader.
The school introduced longtime associate head coach Doug Geyser as its new head coach on Tuesday. Geyser announced his retirement in December after his season of 18. He will replace Owens Lee.
Athletic director Al King said at a press conference, “Throughout the search process, we talked about integrity, dedication, and a work ethic.” Doug embodies all of these attributes. We are committed to providing quality experiences for our student-athletes.Doug’s vision aligns with the goals and objectives of the department and the university.He represents Ashland University with class and poise.”
A native of the Worcester area who attended Triway High School and later played for Cornell University, Geiser worked for various high school teams in northern Ohio before joining Owens’ staff at the University of Akron in 1995. Prior to following a mentor to Ashland, he spent his entire tenure as his coach offensively in his line, adding the title of associate his head coach in 2007.
“Ashland is a very special place, so this is a dream job,” Geyser said. “He’s one of the best jobs in Division II football. I’m both honored and humbled to be selected for this position.”
Much of the reason why this position is so desirable is due to Owens closing the book on a career spanning over 40 years. A native of Mansfield, he first made a name for Ashland County in 1981 when he led Weller his Crestview to an unbeaten season. Division II State his championship at Galion followed his four years at Galion before a season at Lancaster led to the prestigious Massillon head job at Washington. He won 35 games in 1988–91, finishing 3–1 against rivals Canton McKinley.
Owens moved into the college game as an assistant at Ohio State University under John Cooper before being hired as Akron’s head coach in 1995. In his nine years at the helm, Zipps posted his 40-61 record (against rival Kent State University where he has 7-2). Three winning seasons, but failed to win or even play in the Mid-American Conference championship. Owens was fired despite his 7-5 campaign in 2003.
Yet his legacy was yet to be written.
Freshly exiled in Summit County, Ashland brings in Owens to revive a program that has fallen into mediocrity. It didn’t take long for him to do it. He qualified for the Division II playoffs before earning his first postseason win in program history a year later. In 2012, the Eagles recorded his first undefeated regular season in 40 years. Overall, Owens has led the team to his four conference titles and his six playoff berths, and his 137 wins are more than any Ashland coach except Hall of Famer Fred Martinelli. Thing.
“For 45 years, I’ve been blessed,” Owens, 66, said when he decided to retire. “Our family is blessed.”
Since then, tributes to Owens have been pouring in, with Cooper calling him “a great football coach, a very good recruiter, and an even better person.” Gajser echoed that sentiment on Tuesday, praising his former boss as a “future Hall of Famer” who helped establish “the culture of Ashland football.”
“Our goal is to build on that legacy and take Eagle Football to new heights on and off the field,” declared Gaiser.