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Coaching Staff

Head Coach Bob Pagel Bob Pagel, football headshot
Phone: (507) 222-7131

Bob Pagel took over the reins of the Carleton program in January 2012 and is in his ninth season on Knights staff. He is the 17th head coach in the 130-year history of Carleton football.

Pagel served as the Knights’ special teams coordinator and defensive backs coach during the 2004, 2006 and 2007 campaigns. He implemented the coverage schemes for a defense that finished eighth in the nation in takeaways during the 2006 schedule. Pagel was promoted to defensive coordinator in Spring 2008, and that fall the Knights posted a 7-3 record, their most successful season in 16 years. He added associate head coach duties prior to the 2010 campaign.

Prior to joining the staff at Carleton, Pagel spent five years at the University of Minnesota-Duluth (UMD), serving as the Bulldogs’ recruiting coordinator and defensive backs coach. He helped orchestrate UMD’s nationally-ranked defense as the team garnered their only bowl game bid in 2001 and earned their first berth in the NCAA Division II Playoffs in 2002.

Pagel worked for three years at Wartburg College (Iowa) and two seasons at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. While at Wartburg, Pagel worked with a defense that helped the Knights go 27-3 and make a pair of national playoff appearances. He spent the 1998 campaign at St. Cloud State University as a graduate assistant coach before joining UMD for the 1999-2003 seasons.

A native of Eyota, Minn., and graduate of Dover-Eyota High School, Pagel received a B.A. degree in business from Wartburg and holds a master's degree in sports management from St. Cloud State. He resides in nearby Nerstand, Minn., with his wife, Chaz, and the couple’s three children, Mason (9), Ella (6), and Wyatt (2).



Dick Tressel, Football, HeadshotAssistant Coach Dick Tressel  (Recruiting Coordinator/Wide Receivers)
Phone: (507) 222-4054

Dick Tressel joined the Knights in March 2012 after spending 11 years at Ohio State University, including the last eight as the Buckeyes' running backs coach. He is no stranger to the MIAC after serving as the head coach at Hamline University for 23 seasons and earning Football News Coach-of-the-Year honors in 1984. He graduated from Baldwin-Wallace College in 1970 with a degree in physical education. He received his master's from Florida State University in 1976 and his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota in 1996. The big difference makers in his life include his wife, Connie, plus their three sons and daughter-in-law, and seven grandchildren: Mike, Megan, Logan (12) and Quincy (9); Ben, Allyson, Zoe (11), Jack (8) and Molly (3); and Luke, Rachel, Maliha (4) and Kaja (2).


Mike McHugh, football headshotAssistant Coach Mike McHugh (Offensive Coordinator)
(507) 222-5783
Mike McHugh rejoined the Knights in February 2014 after two seasons on the coaching staff at Concordia University (Div. II) in St. Paul, Minn. While with the Golden Bears, McHugh served as recruiting coordinator. He worked with the running backs and tight ends his first season at Concordia, then was appointed offensive line coach in 2013. In his second year with Concordia, the Golden Bears reduced their QB sacks and turnovers by 50% and improved from 2-9 to a 5-6 record. Previously, McHugh spent the 2011 football season at Carleton as the Knights’ offensive line coach and run game coordinator. 

A 2007 graduate of Loras College (Iowa), he served as a student-assistant coach at his alma mater during the spring of 2007 before joining the staff at Eureka College (Ill.). While with the Red Devils, McHugh served as the offensive line coach and strength and conditioning coordinator before being elevated to offensive coordinator. He then joined the staff at the University of Minnesota–Duluth as a graduate intern and oversaw the running backs and tight ends during the 2008-10 seasons. McHugh helped the Bulldogs to two undefeated seasons and three deep playoff runs that culminated in the 2008 and 2010 NCAA Division II National Championships. During that time, UMD produced rushing offenses ranked in the top-five in the country and featured the nation's third-leading individual rusher. McHugh is originally from Chicago and attended Loyola Academy. He  holds a B.A. in exercise science and earned a Master's in Education from UMD. In July, McHugh will marry his fiancé Amy Sandstrom. 


Bill Livingston, football headshotAssistant Coach Bill Livingston  (Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Line)
Phone: (507) 222-5782

Bill Livingston came to the Knights’ staff in 2012 as the defensive line coach and takes over as defensive coordinator this season. He served as the special teams coordinator and running backs coach at Hiram College in 2011 and coached at Otterbein University from 2003-2010 where he was responsible for a multitude of coaching responsibilities, such as defensive line, special teams, running backs, and wide receivers. A former Marine who earned the rank of Corporal, Livingston was was selected as the recipient of the Leatherneck Award in 1978 and was honorably discharged in 1984. He achieved a bachelor of arts from Mount Vernon Nazarene University in 1999 and earned a MBA in 2011 from Otterbein.



Dave Faust, football headshotAssistant Coach Dave Faust  (Offensive Line)
Dave Faust joined the Knights’ staff in 2012 as the offensive line coach, bringing with him 35 years coaching experience. Faust served as the head coach from 1990-98 at Henry Sibley high school before moving to a position of the Hamline University staff. From 1999-2000 he coached special teams and tight ends before transitioning to offensive line for the next three years. After his stint at Hamline, Faust returned to Henry Sibley to be the special teams coordinator. At the high school he is also the chair of the physical education and health department. Faust received his undergraduate and master’s degree at Northern State University in 1982 and 1983.



Tom Bell, football headshotAssistant Coach Tom Bell (Running Backs)
Tom Bell, a longtime successful high school coach and physical education teacher, was honored during the 1999-2000 school year as "Teacher of the Year" in the Montgomery/Lonsdale school district, where he was head football coach for 19 seasons. Bell is a 1971 graduate of Moorhead State University where he was a four-year letterwinner.





Assistant Coach Tom Menke (Linebackers)Tom Menke, football headshot
Tom Menke was added to the Knights’ staff prior to the 2013 campaign. He had coached at Prior Lake (Minn.) high school since 2002, concluding his time there as co-defensive coordinator and helping build the Lakers program into a perennial state qualifier. A 2001 graduate of the University of St. Thomas with degrees in Urban Planning and Theology, he also spent two seasons coaching at Mounds View high school. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife, Trisha, and their children, Evelyn and William.




Assistant Coach John Kunelius (Defensive Backs)John Kunelius, football headshot
John Kunelius joins the Knights this season and brings experience from the professional, collegiate, and high school levels. A linebacker/safety at Southwest Minnesota State University, he graduated in 2007 with a degree in exercise science and was invited to participate in the Minnesota Vikings’ rookie minicamp that year. Kunelius started coaching at Montgomery-Lonsdale high school in 2010 and earned his master’s in educational leadership from Saint Mary’s University in 2013.




Assistant Coach John Ott (Defensive Line)John Ott, football headshot
John Ott is in his second season with the Knights. He has held a variety of roles from position coach to coordinator to head coach during his career which spans 22 years in the high school and college ranks.  A 1996 graduate of Bemidji State, Ott is working on his masters degree in education leadership from Saint Mary's University.