Bill Maskill announced his retirement following a remarkable 22-year run as Midwestern State's head football coach Sunday afternoon.
And Midwestern State wasted little time elevating longtime defensive coordinator Rich Renner as Maskill's successor.
Maskill closes his career as the program's all-time leader with 160 wins, while leading the Mustangs to five Lone Star Conference championships and nine postseason appearances.
"We owe a debt of gratitude to coach Bill Maskill for his tremendous leadership over the past 22 years," MSU Director of Athletics Kyle Williams said. "MSU is proud of his wins, but his guidance through life lessons and the growth of our student-athletes was most impactful. We wish he and his wife, Mary Helen, all the best in the exciting days ahead."
Maskill directed the Mustangs to 19 winning seasons, including in each of his first 17 years in Wichita Falls. Put in perspective, the Midwestern State football program posted winning ledgers just eight times in 25 years of football prior to Maskill's arrival.
His 160 wins as a head coach in the Lone Star Conference are the second most in the league's storied history trailing only Ron Harms, who won 172 games at Texas A&M-Kingsville from 1979-1999.
Under Maskill's tutelage, Midwestern State thrived. The Mustangs averaged nearly eight wins a season while logging at least eight victories 12 times. The program managed to post eight-or-more wins just three times in its previous 23 seasons of existence, claiming 10 victories in 1949 and nine wins in 1946 and 1991.
Maskill guided Midwestern to five Lone Star Conference titles (2009, 2011, 2012, 2017, 2021) including a pair of LSC South Division titles in 2004 and 2009. The Mustangs also claimed the LSC Playoff title in 2015.
Maskill earned his first LSC Coach of the Year honor in 2009 leading the Mustangs to their first conference title with a 9-3 mark then earned the accolade again following the 2011, 2012, 2015, 2017 and 2021 campaigns.
No other coach in Lone Star Conference football history has earned the league's top coaching honors as many times.
In all, Maskill coached 33 All-Americans, 57 all-region selections, and 78 All-Lone Star Conference first-team performers in his 22 seasons in Wichita Falls.
During his time, MSU had three players hit the field in the NFL including Amini Silatolu, Marqui Christian and Joe Unga. Silatolu was selected by the Carolina Panthers in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft, while Christian was taken in the fifth round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals.
Christian, who enjoyed a six-year professional career, won the Cliff Harris Award as the best small college defensive player in the country following the 2015 season.
Maskill also mentored a trio of Harlon Hill finalist quarterbacks building on MSU's strong tradition of offensive potency including Phillip Boggs in 2002, Zack Eskridge in 2009 and Brandon Kelsey in 2011. That's not to mention a pair of All-America signal callers in Daniel Polk and Layton Rabb. Both men led MSU to postseason showings.
Maskill recently completed his 55th year as a football coach. His coaching experience included stops as a Division I assistant at Vanderbilt (twice), Southern Methodist, Wake Forest, Oregon, Tulane, Louisville, Arizona State, Bowling Green and Iowa.
He served as a head coach at Southeast Missouri State University in 1988 and 1989. During his two-year stint, the Cape Girardeau, Missouri, school went 13-8 with his 1988 squad winning a share of the Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship. While at SEMO, Maskill helped two men, Jon Gruden and Marty Mornhinweg, who later became head coaches in the National Football League, get their start.
Maskill comes from a great coaching background. His father, Bill, Sr., is considered to be one of the greatest high school football coaches in the history of the state of Michigan. First at Sheridan then at Augusta High School in Galesburg, Mich., the elder Maskill coached for 39 years until retiring in 1991. At the time of his retirement, he was the winningest high school football coach in the state's history. He amassed 274 wins, 18 league championships and four state titles. He was named coach of the year on numerous occasions and is a member of the Michigan High School Coaches' Hall of Fame.
Renner chosen as Maskill's successor
Renner becomes the 13th head football coach in the program's history and fifth since MSU re-instituted the program in 1988. He will be formally announced at a press conference Monday afternoon. "Midwestern State is thrilled to announce the hiring of Rich Renner as our next head football coach," MSU Director of Athletics Kyle Williams said. "Rich's love for the game is evident and his love for MSU is unparalleled. His intimate knowledge of our current staff and players position him to continue to build upon past successes, while furthering the MSU program. We welcome Rich, wife Jennifer, daughter Addison, and son Grant. MSU Football is in good hands."
Renner has played a huge role in many of those wins having served as the defensive line coach in 2006 and 2007 before become defensive coordinator in 2008. In all, Renner spent the last 18 years as a leader on Midwestern's coaching staff.
During that time, Renner mentored seven defensive All-Americans, 23 all-region selections, and 23 All-Lone Star Conference first-team performers.
Renner played an instrumental role in the development of Marqui Christian, who was selected as Cliff Harris Award as the best small college defensive player in the country following the 2015 season.
Christian was taken in the fifth round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals and enjoyed a six-year professional career.
Under Renner's guidance, the MSU defensive has consistently ranked among the best in the Lone Star Conference. The Mustangs boasted the league's top defense in 2013 and 2015. The defense allowed the second fewest yards of Renner's tenure as the leader of the unit this season by yielding 315.5 yards per game.
Renner helped guide the Mustangs to eight NCAA Division II postseason showings, a bowl appearance, and five Lone Star Conference titles since joining Maskill's staff in 2006.
Before moving to Wichita Falls, Renner served as a linebacker and defensive line coach and was the video coordinator at West Texas A&M University in Canyon.
His other coaching experience included a stop at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tenn. in 1999 after serving as a graduate assistant at the University of Louisville from 1997-99 where he helped the Cardinals to a Motor City Bowl appearance in 1998.
Renner played as a walk-on linebacker at Louisville before earning a scholarship for his final two seasons.
A native of Cincinnati, Renner was a two-year letterman before earning his bachelor's degree in mathematics and later a master's degree in sports administration in 1999 at the University of Louisville.Renner and his wife, Jennifer, are the parents to a 15-year-old daughter, Addison Grace, and 12-year-old son, Grant Michael.
This article originally appeared on Wichita Falls Times Record News: Bill Maskill retires as Midwestern State head football coach