HUNTSVILLE — Northwest Missouri State athletic director and former Austin College head coach Mel Tjeerdsma is among five finalists announced by Sam Houston State for its next football coach.

HUNTSVILLE — Northwest Missouri State athletic director and former Austin College head coach Mel Tjeerdsma is among five finalists announced by Sam Houston State for its next football coach.


The longtime Northwest football coach acknowledged earlier this week he would interview for the position vacated by Willie Fritz, who left to become coach at Georgia Southern after four years at SHSU.


The other candidates include former Delaware coach K.C. Keeler, Virginia offensive line coach Scott Wachenheim, former Texas offensive coordinator Darrell Wyatt and North Texas offensive coordinator Michael Canales.


Tjeerdsma, 67, guided Northwest to four Division II championships and owns a career record of 242-82-4 in 27 years.


He started at Austin College (1984-93) and is the ‘Roos’ winningest coach with 56 victories. He later coached Northwest to seven berths in the Division II championship game.