ST. LOUIS — Missouri Baptist University officially launched its football program March 6 at a press conference on its Creve Coeur campus, announcing the hiring of its new head coach.
MBU has hired Jason Burianek, a former defensive back coach and special teams coordinator at McKendree University, for the post -— his first time in a top spot.
In addition to his coaching experience, he played as a wide receiver at the University of Colorado under Rich Neuheisel in his freshman year and then under Gary Barnett for the remainder of his college career. After graduation, Burianek spent a few months as a graduate assistant under Barnett, before becoming part of the McKendree University coaching staff.
Burianek will not only have his first opportunity to lead, but will spend more than a year to build a program from the ground up. He plans to primarily recruit from a 60-mile radius around St. Louis. “I want to get to know the inner workings of the university and the community as well as getting to know the coaches in the St. Louis area,” he said. “There are many great high school coaches in the area that will be critical in helping us recruit the great athletes here.”
The athletics department plans only to scrimmage during the fall 2013 season with about 30 student-athletes. In 2014, the team will begin NAIA play. In the next year and a half, Missouri Baptist expects to recruit more than 100 new student-athletes for football. Plans also call for expanding the cheerleading program and creating a pep band.
MBU will play all home games on the neighboring Christian Brothers College High School field. The two schools currently share facilities on an ongoing basis, a relationship that has evolved over the years.
Missouri Baptist is a member of the American Midwest Conference. Although the AMC doesn’t support football, the university has no plans to switch conferences.