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Podcast: Minnesota Vikings Coach of the Year Chris Mensen of Simley High School

Simley High School in Minnesota is known for its wrestling team. But football coach Chris Mensen is building a football culture that is based on the wrestling team's success.

In 2022, Mensen led Simley High School to its first-ever Minnesota high school football state championship. Simley won Minnesota’s Class AAAA title with a fourth quarter comeback against Hutchinson at U.S. Bank Stadium, home of the Minnesota Vikings.

Related: See the list of every football state champion from the 2022 season

The 34-24 victory landed Mensen the Vikings' 2022 High School Coach of the Year Award. The honor makes him a finalist for the Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award.

Mensen said he drew inspiration by looking at Simley's 15-time state champion wrestling team. Below, Coach Mensen talks with High School Football America’s Jeff Fisher about how the wrestling weight room helped his football program.

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  • Clubs and Partners
  • High School Football
  • Coaching