Rockford Lutheran announced the hiring of Chuck Leonard as the program's new head football coach in a press release on Friday.
"I consider myself very blessed to have this opportunity placed in front of me," Leonard said in a statement released by the school. "Rockford Lutheran is a place where students are able to receive a first class education, participate in an athletic program that is second to none, and most importantly grow in their faith. I am excited to accept the position as head football coach and ready to enthusiastically carry on the tradition of excellence that is Crusader Athletics."
Leonard comes to the Crusaders after a four-year run as the head coach of the Belvidere Bucs. He finished with an even 19-19 record, including two playoff berths as a NIC-10 representative. Leonard takes over a Lutheran program that's had a sustained run of success under former head coach Bruce Bazsali, who stepped down prior to the New Year. Bazsali led the Crusaders to five straight postseasons before the end of his tenure.
“I am completely committed to the fact that Chuck Leonard is the right person to continue moving the Crusader football program forward from where Coach Bazsali has left it," said Lutheran athletic director Dirk Campbell. "Chuck’s passion for this opportunity and the vision he has for not only continuing the success on the field that we have become accustomed to but also developing quality young men in doing so is very exciting. We are very happy to welcome Chuck and his family to the Rockford Lutheran family."