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ABOR Approves Three-Year Contracts for Six Lumberjack Head Coaches

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – The Arizona Board of Regents approved multi-year contracts for six Northern Arizona University head coaches at the meeting held in Flagstaff on Thursday. The coaches were previously on one-year contracts.

ABOR requires approval of all multi-year contracts. The board approved contracts for Brad Bedortha (women’s golf), Kim Bruno (men’s and women’s tennis), Craig Choate (volleyball), Eric Heins (track and field), Andy Johns (women’s swimming and diving) and Andre Luciano (women’s soccer). The contracts did not include raises but were extensions of current one-year agreements. Each contract has performance-related bonuses.

Bedortha is entering his fourth season overall at NAU this fall. During his tenure, Coach Bedortha has led the golf team to the Big Sky Championship in 2009, a second-place finish in 2008 and third-place finish in 2010. The Lumberjacks have won 11 team titles under his leadership and he was named the Big Sky Coach of the Year in 2009.

Bruno, the head men’s and women’s tennis coach, just finished her third year as the director of tennis at NAU and sixth overall.  The 2010 women’s team finished 13-7 overall and 7-1 in conference play, while the men’s  team had a record of 13-9 in 2010 and had a win over conference power Sacramento State to end their 24-match win streak. Both reached the finals of the Big Sky Conference Championships.

Choate is in his third year at NAU in 2010-11 and has had one winning season, which was the first one for the volleyball team in seven years. His 2010 team finished 10-16 overall. He has coached the Big Sky Libero of the Year and he has coached two Big Sky Freshmen of the Year players.

Heins is entering his second full season as the Director of Track and Field/Cross Country after assuming the role in an interim basis in 2009-10. He will be coaching his fifth season overall at NAU this fall since joining the staff as the head cross country coach. Coach Heins has led teams to six top 10 finishes at the NCAA Championships and won eight Big Sky Conference titles.

Johns completed his fifteenth full season at NAU as the head swimming and diving coach. During his tenure, Coach Johns has led the teams to Top 3 conference finishes in 12 of his 15 years. Coach Johns has earned Coach of the Year honors in all three conferences the teams have been affiliated with, the most recent being the WAC.

Luciano completed her eleventh year directing the soccer program at NAU and has had winning seasons in each of the last three years, both overall and in the Big Sky. His 2008 and 2009 teams won the Big Sky tournament championship. His 2010 team won the Big Sky regular season championship. Coach Luciano was named the Big Sky Conference Coach of the Year in 2008 and 2009.

The NAU contracts were approved along several head coaches from the University of Arizona.