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Bluefield College names new coach

BLUEFIELD, W.V. – The list of football coaching legends at Bluefield College
includes the likes of B.E. "Mullie" Lenoir and Tony Lotito, who together amassed an 83-22-2 win-loss record over a 12-year span during the infancy of BC football.
Just who will be the next legendary coach at this small Christian college nestled in the Appalachian Mountains of southwest Virginia?
Coach Mike Gravier. At least that’s what Bluefield College leaders declared during a press conference, July 23, 2010, announcing the hiring of Gravier as the new head coach for BC football.
While Coach Gravier’s legend on the sideline will have to wait, his claim to fame for now is the fact that he is Bluefield College’s first head football coach in 69 years, considering the college abandoned the sport after the 1941 season as a result of the loss of most male student-athletes to World War II.
But, in June 2010, after an extensive feasibility study and a tremendous show of support from alumni and friends, the college
announced the revival of its football program and embarked on the critical search for the right person to lead the resurgence.
"Hiring the right coach, someone who identifies with the college’s mission and has a passion for transforming young men’s lives through the game of football, is critical to the success of this new program," said BC president, Dr. David Olive. "I’m convinced we have found that person in Mike Gravier." Gravier helped launch a football program as an assistant coach and offensive coordinator at Malone University in Ohio in 1992. Two seasons later, he became the head coach of the young program, where during a four-year span he amassed a 30-12-1 win-loss record, three Mid-States Football Association (MSFA) championships, a MSFA Coach of the Year honor, and two National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) national tournament bids. "Mike brings an excellent understanding of the game and effective coaching style to Bluefield football," said BC’s athletic director, Pete Dryer. "In addition to his experience and success on the field, we are excited to have a football coach with strong character, a passion to live out his faith in Jesus Christ, and a desire to serve and mentor student-athletes."
Coach Gravier began his career with five years of coaching at the high school level after playing football and earning his bachelor’s degree from Grand Valley State University in Michigan and while earning his master’s degree from Western Michigan University.
He spent the next six years as an assistant coach at Kalamazoo College in Michigan, Western Michigan University, Southeast Missouri State University, and Michigan Technological University, before beginning his six-year stint with Malone. He was called back to his alma mater to coach in 1998 and spent two additional seasons as a high school coach in Georgia before devoting his career in 2001 to faith-based ministries, including Christian Outreach International in Florida, where for three years he served as director of sports ministry.



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