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Greisen looking forward to leading West De Pere

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West De Pere has hired Chris Greisen as its new head football coach. (Doug Ritchay/WLUK)

GREEN BAY (WLUK) -- Chris Greisen has been around high school football for quite a while and Tuesday he finally got his wish -- to lead a program.

The former Sturgeon Bay standout and NFL quarterback was named West De Pere's new head coach replacing Jack Batten, who surprisingly resigned after six seasons.

"(After the interview, I) came home impressed with the leadership," said Greisen, who was also hired as a math teacher. "The more I looked into the program and talked with some people I knew from the district, it became more and more attractive. A lot of that was right there.

"I believe I have some fresh ideas. I'm looking forward to leading my own team."

Greisen had been at Freedom from 2016-19 and called offensive plays. As a former quarterback, offense has been his strength.

He should bring a new look to West De Pere, which has been a run-heavy offense with three-year starter Josh Blount at quarterback. Last season, Freedom and West De Pere each went 11-1, losing in Level 3 of the playoffs and they did it different ways.

West De Pere threw 105 passes last season and 11 TD passes. Meanwhile, Freedom threw 262 passes and 24 TDs.

Greisen said despite the differences last season, he will adjust to his talent.

"I'm going to adjust to what I have," he said. "We need a lot of bullets in our holster to attack a defense. You have a team that knows how to run the ball and my expertise is to teach the quarterbacks, receivers and running backs the passing game.

"In Freedom, some of our best games we threw only 8-10 times. It depends on the quarterback, it depends on the receivers. If you make a deep run into the playoffs, you have to run the ball. We'll be very multiple. Defenses will have to put in a lot of work to figure us out."

Before coaching at Freedom, Greisen assisted at Notre Dame and Green Bay Southwest. Additionally, he leads his own quarterback academy and directs a quarterback, receiver and defensive back camp.

He said his most recent experience at Freedom really helped.

"The last couple years at Freedom and coaching with Frank Mattia has been really good for me," Greisen said. "Frank included me in a lot of decisions. We did a lot together. That's helped me."

Not only will West De Pere have a new coach, it moves from the Bay Conference to the Fox River Classic Conference this coming season. The Phantoms, 59-13 under Batten with one Division 3 championship game appearance (2018), are used to winning.

Greisen, though, said leading a program that's used to success is what he wants.

"Any time you look at jobs, you want to go into a good position with a good culture," he said. "It's not rebuilding, it's evolving to my personality. (Former coaches) Bill (Turnquist) and Jack did such a good job of building up the program. I'm just looking to taking the reigns and going with it.

"We realize it will be tougher going into a bigger conference."

Greisen was a seventh-round pick out of Northwest Missouri State by the Arizona Cardinals in 1999 and played there until 2001. He also played for the Cowboys (2010-11) and had stops in other pro leagues. As a former quarterback, he's looking forward to leading a team.

"I enjoy leading, it is something I did as a player," Greisen said. "I'm really excited, especially with the support of the school."

And Greisen admits he's thinking about his first game, Aug. 21 at Wauwatosa West. That's when he will make decisions as a new head coach.

"Having to decide, are we going to defer or take the ball," Greisen said. "To be honest, I've been thinking about my first play. I am already thinking ahead and the teams on our schedule."

Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay

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