Since Mike Drass took over the reigns of the Wolverines program in 1993, Wesley College football has become synonymous with winning. Now entering his 23nd year as head coach in 2016, Drass, who also serves as the school’s Director of Athletics, is one of the winningest coaches in Division III history with a 210-56-1 overall record entering the 2016 season.
Drass’ 210 victories are currently the third-most among active coaches, ranking only behind Rick Giancola of Montclair State and Michael DeLong of Springfield, and his 78.1 winning percentage ranks among the top ten all-time.
After the turn of the century, and even more so in the last nine seasons, the Wolverines have risen to unprecedented heights. Wesley is one of the winningest programs nationally since 2000, and has advanced to the NCAA Playoffs nine-straight times dating back to the 2005 season. During that stretch, the Wolverines’ 102 victories are the third-most in Division III and the team has won 22 NCAA Playoff Games, advancing to the National Semifinals five times with three more trips to the NCAA Quarterfinals.
Also during that nine-year Playoff Run, Wesley has had a player selected to the AFCA All-America Team which is currently the longest-active streak in the nation and one off the all-time Division III record for consecutive selections.
By the Numbers
|2||Gagliardi Trophy Winner|
|5||Lambert Meadowlands Trophy|
|4||ECAC Team of the Year Award|
|3||Undefeated Regular Season|
|5||NCAA Division III South Region Championships|
|5||D3football.com South Region Players of the Year|
|9||Seasons of at least 10 wins|
|10||Consecutive NCAA Appearances|
|6||Consecutive ACFC Championships|
|8||Associated Press All-Americans|
|6||ECAC Bowl Appearances|
|12||NCAA Division III Playoff Appearances|
|7||Undefeated ACFC Seasons|
|12||ACFC, Regional and National Coach of the Year Awards|
|13||School record for most wins in a season|
|24||NCAA Playoff Wins|
|32||Football Gazette All-Americans|
|43||Atlantic Central Football Conference Victories|
Including his four years as an assistant coach/defensive coordinator before taking over the Wesley program in March of 1993, Drass has been on the sideline for all but one win in the program's Division III history. Drass also guided the team into the inaugural Atlantic Central Football Conference in 1998, the first of nine ACFC Championships for a program that posted a .843 win percentage as a conference member. The Wolverines have proven extremely difficult foe at home at Scott D. Miller Stadium. Since FieldTurf was installed in 2004 Wesley has posted a 65-4 record on their Home Turf for winning percentage of .942.
Under Drass’ leadership, Wesley has proven to be the premier small college football program on the East Coast. During his tenure, the Wolverines have won four of the last seven Lambert Meadowlands Trophies and five of the last seven ECAC Team of the Year Awards in recognition of Eastern supremacy in college football.
Drass has coached student-athletes to 179 All-America honors during his time at Wesley and another 200 all-conference selections during the team's run in conference play. The Wolverines have also produced six D3football.com South Region Players of the Year and six ECAC Southwest Players of the Year, as well as four ECAC Rookies of the Year. In 2004, Rocky Myers won the Gagliardi Trophy for the best player in Division III Football and is still the only defensive player and student-athlete on the East Coast to do so.
In 2015, Joe Callahan's five-year career at Wesley College ended with Division III football's highest honor as the senior quarterback from Absecon, N.J. was awarded the Gagliardi Trophy, given to the most outstanding player in Division III. Callahan led D-III in seven passing categories, including passing yards (5,068, a D-III record) and touchdowns (55). The Wolverines finished 11-2, producing the nation's top offense at 592.2 yards per game. In his final collegiate game, Callahan threw for 379 yards and four touchdowns. Callahan is only the second player at any college level to throw for more than 5,000 yards and 55 touchdowns in a single season. Callahan ended his career at Wesley signigng with the NFL"s Green Bay Packers at the end of April.
The Wolverines, committed to success on the field and in the classroom, stress an academics-first approach to college football. “Football at Wesley College is about a cap and gown, not a helmet and shoulder pads,” says Drass. “I get the most satisfaction when one of our players walks across the graduation stage. Our belief is simple: There can be no success on the field unless there is progress toward a degree in the classroom.”
Drass has coordinated the Wesley defense and has spearheaded the Wolverines’ recruiting since his arrival at Wesley in 1989. Wesley has held top 25 total defense ranking 11 of the last 17 seasons. In 2010, the Wolverines' finished as the No. 1 defense in Division III, in addition to a pair of second place finishes during his tenure.
Coach Drass began his coaching career at North Penn High School in Blossburg, Pennsylvania in 1983. Following two seasons as an assistant, he spent two years as the school’s head coach before accepting a coaching position at Mansfield University, where he is a member of the Mansfield University Athletic Hall of Fame. At his alma mater, he developed the reputation of being an outstanding recruiter while he coached under Tom Elsasser from 1986-88. In 1989, he was hired at Wesley as the defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator.
As a player, Drass was a three year starter and two-time All-PSAC selection as an offensive lineman and captain of the Mountaineers. In his senior year Drass was the only Mountie named to the All-PSAC 1st team. Coach Drass originally hails from Glen Mills, Pennsylvania and attended Penncrest High School where was inducted into the School District's Hall of Fame.
Coach Drass is an active member of the American Football Coaches Association. He has served as the chairman of the Division III All American selection Committee and has served two terms as the District II Chairman of the AFCA Rules Committee. Coach Drass is a member of the ECAC Championship committee for football. He and his wife, Laurie, reside in Dover, and their daughter, Molly Ann.
Coach Drass Coaching File
1983-84: Assistant Coach, North Penn High School
1985-86: Head Coach, North Penn High School
1987-88: Assistant Coach, Mansfield University
1989-92: Assistant Coach, Wesley College
1993-Present: Head Coach, Wesley College
Coach Drass Year-by-Year Won Loss Record
|1993||7-3-1||.682||--||ECAC Bowl Game|
|1995||8-3||.727||--||ECAC Bowl Game|
|1997||7-3||.700||--||ECAC Bowl Game|
||1.000||ACFC Champions; ECAC Bowl Game|
||1.000||0-1||.000||NCAA First Round; ACFC Champions|
|1.000||ACFC Champions; ECAC Bowl Game|
|.800||3-1||.750||NCAA Semifinals; NCAA South Region Champions; ACFC Champions|
|1.000||3-1||.750||NCAA Semifinals; NCAA South Region Champions; ACFC Champions|
|1.000||2-1||.667||NCAA Quarterfinals; Lambert Meadowlands Trophy; ECAC Team of the Year; ACFC Champions|
|2008||9-2||.818||3-0||1.000||1-1||.500||NCAA Second Round; ACFC Champions|
|2009||13-1||.929||3-0||1.000||3-1||.750||NCAA Semifinals; NCAA South Region Champions; ACFC Champions|
|2010||12-1||.923||3-0||1.000||3-1||.750||NCAA Semifinals; NCAA South Region Champions; ACFC Champions|
|2011||12-2||.857||--||3-1||.750||NCAA Semifinals; NCAA South Region Champions|
|2014||12-2||.857||--||3-1||.750||NCAA Semifinals; NCAA Regional Champions|
12 NCAA Tournament Appearances