Hoeppner To Miss Spring Practice

The Indiana University Department of Athletics announced Sunday evening that Head Football Coach Terry Hoeppner will not participate in spring practice so that he may attend to personal health matters.

The Indiana University Department of Athletics announced Sunday evening that Head Football Coach Terry Hoeppner will not participate in spring practice so that he may attend to personal health matters.

"Coach Hoeppner has indicated a need to take some time to regain his strength and energy and to receive proper medical care," Director of Athletics Rick Greenspan said. "We have encouraged Terry to make his family and health a top priority. All of us are hopeful for a quick and full recovery with Coach Hoeppner returning to lead the Indiana Football program."

Hoeppner underwent surgery last September and returned within days to lead Indiana for the balance of the season, recording victories over No. 13 Iowa, Michigan State and Illinois. The competitive season was followed by a very demanding and successful recruiting period and planning for the off-season.

Assistant Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator Bill Lynch will assume the day-to-day responsibilities for the football program in Hoeppner's absence.

"Coach Lynch is an experienced veteran of the football business in whom we have the utmost confidence to lead our program during this time," Greenspan said.

Lynch said the team's thoughts are with Coach Hoeppner as they prepare to enter spring practice.

"Coach Hoeppner is one of the strongest men I've ever been around and his health is the most important thing to everyone who cares about him," Lynch said. "Our coaching staff will effectively guide this program's progress throughout the spring practice period as we look to prepare for a successful season."

The Hoeppner family has expressed their gratitude for the overwhelming support they have received.

"At this time, our family feels as though it is in Terry's best interest to step away from football for a time to concentrate on regaining his strength," Coach Hoeppner's wife Jane said. "We appreciate the thoughts and prayers of Indiana supporters throughout the nation."

Coach Hoeppner also conveyed his gratitude for the well wishes of countless supporters.

"My faith, my family and the Indiana Football program are the most important things in my life," Hoeppner said. "In order to serve them best and make a full recovery, I need to take some time away to regain my strength and energy.

"I have every confidence in Coach Bill Lynch and the entire staff to lead our football program during the spring practice period. I intend to return to guide this program into the 2007 season and beyond. As I prepare to do so, I appreciate the media and our supporters respecting my family's privacy as we handle this personal matter. Likewise, we are grateful for all the well wishes we have received from Hoosier fans everywhere."

The Hoosiers begin spring practice on Tuesday, March 20. They will conduct 15 practices during the period, culminating with the Cream and Crimson Spring Game on Saturday, April 14 at 3 p.m.


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