Southeast Missouri State University introduced Tom Matukewicz as its new head football coach on Wednesday.
Matukewicz was the defensive coordinator at the University of Toledo for the last two years. During his 17 year career, he has held coaching positions at Northern Illinois University, Emporia State, Southern Illinois University and several community colleges.
The Redhawks went three and nine last year, and have had three winning seasons since it joined Division I in 1991.
This will be Matukewicz’s first head coaching job.
“To put in it an athlete perspective, this is like getting drafted,” Matukewicz said. “Since I was 12 years old, I dreamed about the day I could meet my own team, which I did 30 minutes ago. This is truly a dream come true and I’m really, really excited to be your head football coach.”
At a press conference on Wednesday in Cape Girardeau, the man who calls himself “Coach Tuke” said he has been part of three rebuilding programs.
“I’m going to put a team out there that you’re proud of. We’re not going to be jumping offsides. We’re not going to have bad body language and things like that. We’re going to play hard,” Matukewicz said.
Matukewicz will replace Tony Samuel. Samuel was fired three weeks ago despite having two years left on his contract. To Matukewicz, Samuel’s departure illustrates the university’s desire to win.
“You don’t tell a guy not to coach and pay him if winning ain’t important,” Matukewicz said. “To me that showed a commitment, like winning is important.”
Matukewicz will earn an annual salary of $130,000 with additional compensation up to $57,000 per year.
Southeast Missouri State University plays in the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision.