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Former NKU Coach a Finalist for Head Coach Job in Minnesota

The former head coach of Northern Kentucky University's men's basketball team is a finalist for a new job up north.

Dave Bezold, fired by NKU at the end of the last season, is one of two candidates being considered for the open position at Winona State in Winona, Minnesota, the university's athletics director announced this week.

Bezold is on campus Thursday for interviews and an open forum with staff, media, and other community members.

After 11 seasons at the helm in Highland Heights where he compiled a 194-133 record (.593 winning percentage) and guided the Norse during its transition from NCAA Division II to Division I, Bezold was let go and replaced with John Brannen, a Northern Kentucky native and University of Alabama assistant. NKU was a Division II powerhouse and was consistently competitive under Bezold at that level. 

Winona State is a Division II program where it won two national titles in 2006 and 2008 under longtime coach Mike Leaf who resigned abruptly in June. The Warriors were runners-up in 2007 and put together a 57-game winning streak between January 2006 and March 2007.

Bezold is up against Todd Eisner for the job. Eisner is head coach at Midland University in Fremon, Nebraska where he has led teams to three straight appearances in the NAIA Division II national tournament, finishing as runner-up in 2014. He has been a head coach at the NAIA level for 17 years with stops that include Viterbo University in Wisconsin where Bezold played. Eisner was an assistant coach at Creighton University in NCAA Division I where he also played.

-Staff report

Photo: Dave Bezold (via NKU)