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Samuel Hoffman | The Journal Gazette
Bishop Luers interim head football coach Steve Keefer talks with the media about his new position on Monday.

Ex-coach takes over at Luers

Interim Keefer led Knights from ’79 to ’86

Former Bishop Luers head coach and current freshman coach Steve Keefer will guide the three-time defending Class 2A state champion Knights’ football program for the remainder of this season, the school announced Monday.

Monday’s practice was closed, but Keefer addressed the media afterward. Keefer said he found out from his wife, Luers Principal Mary Keefer, on Monday morning about his new position.

“I talked it over with the principal, and we thought it would be a smooth transition,” Steve Keefer said. “These players have all played for me as the freshman coach. For Luers, the program and the kids, I think this is a good way to move forward.”

Matt Lindsay was fired Sunday as the school’s head football coach and athletic director. A new AD has not yet been named.

Keefer, 66, coached the Knights from 1979 to ’86 to a record of 64-27, won the 1985 Class 2A state championship, the school’s first of 10 titles, and was the 1983 2A state runner-up. He also coached at Bellmont from 1988 to ’93, compiling a 15-43 record. He has been the Luers freshman coach since the early 2000s.

Lindsay was an assistant coach for Keefer for seven seasons at Luers.

“We have been friends for years, and it is a shock for the community,” Steve Keefer said of Lindsay. “I would just tell (the Luers community) not to speculate with what you don’t know. We will just pull together.”

The school said in a news release Sunday that Lindsay’s employment was terminated because of “violations of school and Diocesan policies, and his violations of his employment contract obligations.”

Lindsay, a 1973 Luers graduate, had been with the school for 33 years and was the football team’s head coach for the past 26 years with a record of 229-99, winning a state-best nine state championships and the athletic director for 21 years.

“We told the players to focus on the spiritual side, grades and athletics, moving forward and being positive,” Keefer said. “They know me, and I know them. It has to be comforting to them knowing there’s going to be a flow here, and it won’t be disrupted.”

Matt Lindsay’s son, Kyle Lindsay, was Luers’ interim football coach Friday in a 27-7 win over Wayne.

“I don’t really feel any pressure,” Keefer said of taking over a talent-laden team. “We are on the same page and going the same direction. We need to focus on moving forward and advancing the program.”

Steve Keefer said the coaching staff will remain intact, including Kyle Lindsay’s status as offensive coordinator.

“That’s what the administration wanted,” Keefer said of Kyle Lindsay not staying on as interim head coach. “He is still going to call the plays. He congratulated me and said that was the right way to go.”

Keefer said he didn’t anticipate any major changes scheme-wise but did want to include a more power-running game on offense. Keefer has been retired from Bellmont as a teacher for a year and didn’t anticipate the head coaching position at Luers lasting longer than the end of this season. He still is an occasional substitute at Luers.