HOWELL – Cleary University has added bowling to the growing list of sports in its athletic program and has named Mark Auxter as the first head coach for both the men’s and women’s team.
"Bowling is a very popular sport that is quickly becoming a prominent college sport,” said Karl Kling, Cleary University athletic director. “We felt that we could immediate success with this sport if we selected the right coach and we feel we found that coach."
"After talking with several people regarding the creation of bowling as a varsity sport, they gave me a good idea of what was needed in regards to a coach and that is someone who understands the collegiate process, has worked with young people and has achieved at least the bronze level in coaching certification,” said Kling. “With his daughter recently going through the collegiate recruiting process for college and Mark being a successful high school coach and with bronze level status; we knew he has everything we sought."
Auxter has been the assistant women’s bowling coach at Brighton High School for the past four years. During that time he has helped the team qualify for state twice and win a regional championship in 2011.
Auxter, a native of Webberville, has been bowling since 1984 and earned a bronze coaching certification from the United States Bowling Congress.
"There is one thing you learn quickly in discussing bowling with Mark and that's that Mark knows the sport thoroughly,” Kling said. “I felt that he could make a seamless transition to a collegiate coach and the kids will benefit greatly with his knowledge and ability to teach."
The Cleary University bowling team will begin play this fall and Auxter hopes to have two teams of eight bowlers ready to roll.
“We are a little behind, but we will be ready to bowl,” said Auxter.
Recruiting is the priority now.
“There is a lot of talent in this area,” he said. “Michigan and Ohio are huge bowling states. I have already been talking to some players in Ohio.”
Auxter said he is a little nervous, but is looking forward to the challenge of building the program.
“I am a competitor, but we want to sure that we are getting students who are the right fit for Cleary,” said Auxter. “They need to understand that academics come first.”
Cleary University reintroduced its collegiate athletic program in 2011 when it formed teams for men’s and women’s golf and cross country. Cleary’s athletic program also includes: men’s and women’s soccer, baseball and softball. Baseball and softball are scheduled to begin in 2015. Cleary is a member of the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA).
Cleary University (cleary.edu) is an independent, not-for-profit, multi-campus, specialized business university, committed to the betterment of society through the success of its alumni and their employers. Cleary’s mission is to provide a practical, application-based education, which equips students to advance their careers.