Tracy Dill, director of intercollegiate athletics at Bemidji State University, has announced that Kyle Fodness has been hired as head coach of the Beaver tennis program August 19, 2019.
“We are thrilled to have Kyle as the next women’s tennis head coach at Bemidji State,” said Dill. “Kyle has a tremendous passion for coaching and teaching. He truly values the campus and the Bemidji community. We are excited for the future of the women’s tennis program.”
A native of Bemidji, Minn. Fodness is a teacher within the Bemidji School District and is also in his first season the head coach of Bemidji High School girl’s tennis team after four years coaching the Bemidji Middle School girl’s program, while he has coached the BMS boy’s tennis team for the last five seasons. In addition, he has been the Offseason Development Coordinator of the Bemidji Summer Youth Tennis program for the past seven years.
Fodness also spent three seasons (2016-18) as a volunteer assistant coach at BSU, which included three 10-win seasons and the program’s winningest season on record—12 wins in a 2018 season which concluded with a four-place finish in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference regular-season standings.
“I am very happy to step into the tennis program at BSU, specifically, because of the great student-athletes and culture that is already in place here,” commented Fodness. “It is a very team-oriented group, which isn’t always the case in an individual sport like tennis.”
Fodness added, “I am also excited to join the BSU athletic department. Having been a part of the football program and being around the staff has given me a chance to see how the department operates and I am really excited to be a part of that.”
A 2015 graduate of Bemidji State, Fodness was collegiate student-athlete himself. After participating in four sports at Bemidji High School, he attended the University of Minnesota and competed as a place-kicker for the Golden Gophers in 2012 and 2013. He transferred home in 2014 and kicked for the BSU football team. During that season he played in 11 games and led the team in scoring (42 pts), converted 27-of-32 extra point attempts, made five field goals with a long of 38 yards and posted a team-best 57.4 yards per kickoff.
“The community has always been very supportive of the Lumberjacks and Beavers as a whole, but especially over the course of the last few years, it has been really fun to see the community support this program,” said Fodness. “Tennis is just like every other BSU athletic program, because Bemidji is a smaller community, it’s a more important part of the community. That kind of support means a lot to the team.”
The Beavers will get things underway Sept. 28 with a pair of off-season matches in St. Cloud, Minn. versus the College of St. Benedict and the University of Wisconsin-Stout. BSU officially kicks of its season Feb. 2 when it travels to Grand Forks, N.D. for a non-conference match up with the University of North Dakota.
Fodness takes over a program coached by his father, Mark Fodness. The elder Fodness stepped away from the BSU program after seven seasons as head coach and will fill a volunteer assistant coach role.