Acclaimed EGR football coach heading to Hope

Peter Stuursma is introduced as the new head football coach at Hope College. (Jan. 26, 2016)


HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD)— The man who helped East Grand Rapids to seven Michigan state football championships is leaving the district.

Coach Peter Stuursma is returning to his alma mater Hope College as its new head football coach.

The 1993 Hope graduate served as co-captain for the college’s football team his senior year. Stuursma was a running back and special teams player who also earned the Allan C. Kinney award.

Stuursma returned to Holland as the Flying Dutchmen’s defensive coordinator during the 1999 season, leading Hope to a share of the MIAA title. He was also Hope’s recruiting coordinator and assistant track coach that season.

East Grand Rapids went 162-34 with 13 trips to the state playoffs during Stuursma’s 16-season tenure. The Pioneers also took seven state titles in that time.

“Coach Stuursma has a track record of providing transformational experiences and competitive excellence as a head coach and an administrator,” stated Tim Schoonveld, Hope’s co-director of athletics in a news release Monday.

“I am truly excited to return to Hope College, a place that has meant so much to my family and me,” Stuursma added in the statement. “I look forward to working with the many young people not only within our program but within the entire Hope community.”

Stuursma also served as principal of East Grand Rapids Middle School for 11 years and coached at Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central High School for three years.

Stuursma takes over for Dean Kreps, who left Hope after two decades. Hope College will kick off its new football season at Monmouth, Illinois Sept. 3.

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