Braham Hall of Fame accepting nominations

Mike Hennen, teacher and coach at Cambridge-Isanti High School the past
13 years, takes over the helm of Bluejacket Football after being named
the new head coach last week.

Greg Hunt
greg.hunt@ecm-inc.com

Mike Hennen, teacher and coach at Cambridge-Isanti High School the past 13 years, takes over the helm of Bluejacket Football after being named the new head coach last week. Hennen, the varsity defensive coordinator the last 10 seasons, replaces Todd Larkin who retired as coach last autumn.

“Todd left us in pretty good shape. We’ve got a lot of starters coming back from last season. At one point, due to injuries and such, we had eight underclassmen starting on defense,” said Coach Hennen. “Offensively, we have our skill guys back in the backfield, Tom

Selz is back as our leading receiver, and we have two starting linemen back.”

Hennen grew up around football, first being the ball boy at the University of Minnesota-Morris when he lived in that city. He played high school football at Annandale as a runningback and linebacker, along with also playing basketball and baseball for the Cardinals.

Coach Mike Hennen pictured at home with wife Tricia and children (l-r) Annie, Molly and Jack. Photo by Greg Hunt
 

He then returned to U of M-Morris to play college ball as a runningback, fullback and tight end for the Cougars.

“I’m the youngest of six kids in my family, with three brothers. I kind of grew up around the game. We had huge neighborhood games all the time. I was the youngest of all those guys so I had to raise my level pretty quickly or I was going to get beat on pretty good,” looked back Hennen. “Then I had brother-in laws who played at University of Minnesota-Morris before me, so that was one of the reasons I went back there.”

Hennen previously coached at Morris H.S. (sophomore defensive coordinator), Blooming Prairie (JV offensive coordinator), and Cold Spring Rocori (sophomore offensive coordinator). Moving to Cambridge, he first coached 8th and 10th grade football before taking the defensive coordinator role.

The Bluejackets will open the 2011 season at Zimmerman Sept. 1, with the first home game following Sept. 9 against Elk River for the Mississippi 8 opener. The conference is sitting at seven teams for one season, with Becker going one last year in the M-8 before moving to the Granite Ridge. In 2012, Duluth East and Duluth Central will come into the M-8.

“I’m not sure what’s going to happen with our Mississippi 8 picture. It helps us in football to have the Duluth schools come in to give us eight member teams, but I don’t think our ADs will want to sit with six members in the rest of the sports in 2012-13,” said Hennen. “There are so many scenarios out there.”

Hennen attended a football clinic already last weekend while preparing for the new role. He will get rolling on creating his coaching staff over the next couple of weeks at CIHS.

“I think for the most part we need to worry about ourselves. A lot of times people are ‘well, how good’s this team or this other team?’ I’m not too concerned about what the other team’s bringing, but I can control what we’re going to put out on the field. So our focus will be to do the little things right and get the Bluejacket football tradition going again this fall,” said Hennen.

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