Carson-Newman University names Mike Turner 18th head football coach

Mike Turner

JEFFERSON CITY (WATE) – Former offensive coordinator Mike Turner said he knows he has big shoes to fill.

Turner was named the 18th head football coach of Carson-Newman University Tuesday. The move comes just a day after legendary head coach Ken Sparks announced his retirement.

Previous story: Legendary Carson-Newman head coach Ken Sparks announces retirement

“I am excited, humbled, honored and enthusiastic about this opportunity,” said Turner at a press conference Tuesday. “This program will never change in many ways. It will always be a Christ-driven program. That is the legacy that coach Ken Sparks left behind and that is the way we will continue to operate.”

With 33 seasons of coaching on Sparks’ staff and 37 years on the job, the university said they felt like the football team was in good hands. Turner built one of the most prolific offenses in division II, averaging close to 40 points per game over the last decade.

“You don’t replace him,” said Turner. “I wouldn’t try to be somebody else. I’m going to be me and, like I said, we’re going to pull up our sleeves baby and go to work.”

Turner is also a Carson-Newman alumnus and a members fo the Eagles only team to reach a national title game in 1972.


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