Der 59-jährige Wnek startete bereits im Jahr 1973 seine Trainerlaufbahn bei den Northern Illinois Huskies (NCAA Div 1). Weitere Karrierestationen führten ihn über die CFL (DC bei den BC Lions, DL Coach Hamilton Tigercats) zurück zum College Football. Vom Big 12-Team Baylor Bears wechselte er als D-Line Coach zuletzt wieder in die kanadische Profiliga zu den Edmonto Eskimos.

Bekannt ist der aus Chicago Illinois stammenden Wnek vor allem durch seine unkonventionellen, bisweilen sogar exzentrischen Trainingsmethoden. Ein Bild, welches ihn mit einem Messer einen Spieler von Edmonton bedrohend zeigt, ging um die Welt. Auch wenn es sich nur um eine Plastikattrappe handelte, darf sich die Vikings D-Line heute schon auf so manches ‚Schmankerl‘ ihres neuen Trainers freuen.

Freude hat auch Head Coach Chris Calaycay mit dem hochkarätigen Neuzugang.

‚Es ist fantastisch einen Coach mit der Erfahrung von Coach Wnek für die Vikings gewinnen zu können. Mit vier Nationalteam D-Linern und einem Junioren Nationalteamspieler in unseren Reihen, hat Coach Wnek eine bereits gute Arbeitsbasis und wird die Entwicklung dieser Spieler weiter vorantreiben.‘, so Calaycay der nach OC Jordan Neuman den bereits zweiten neuen Trainer in der Woche in Wien begrüßen durfte.

Don Wnek Recent and Relevant Positions

Edmonton Eskimos, Canadian Football League (Edmonton, Alberta)

» Assisted club to dramatic 11-win season as well as semi-final playoff victory
» Coached Eskimos Defensive Line to record 35 Quarterback sacks and
Dario Romero to All-Star recognition
» Participated in player evaluations, selections and Draft

Baylor University, Big 12 Conference (Waco, Texas)

» Coached Bears Defensive Line
» Acted as academic and faculty liaison for BU football program
» Organized and coordinated professional development activities for coaching staff
» Recruited high school student athletes from entire State of Texas,
as well as Community College student athletes from Arizona and Illinois

Indiana University, Big Ten Conference (Bloomington, Indiana)

» Responsible, with head football coach, for overall management of a $2.1 million budget
» Monitored compliance with NCAA regulations
» Acted as faculty and departmental liaison for football student athletes
» Planned and supervised recruiting and team oriented social activities, game-day logistics,
transportation and meals
» Aided in development and maintenance of Football Alumni Database

Department of Homeland Security (Trout River, New York)

» Enforced primary mission of preventing terrorists and terrorist weapons from entering U.S.
» Stemmed flow of illegal drugs and protected America from theft of intellectual properties
» Administered immigration laws and regulations; regulated and facilitated cross border trade

Winnebago High School (Winnebago, Illinois)

» Taught Physical Education and Driver’s Education;
» Led football squads to 15-8-2 record; turnaround from prior 3-season record of 8-15
» Coached 2 players to All-State honors and Division I scholarships

Coaching Career Highlights

» Coached, developed and mentored two NFL and nine CFL All-Stars, as well as two Illinois
All-State, one Kodak All-American, six All-Big Sky and three All-Mid American Conference honorees
» Coordinated the defense for 1986 University of Nevada undefeated Big Sky Champions;
ran Wolf Pack’s defensive line in the capture of two other Big Sky titles
» Coached CFL’s quarterback sack leader – 1995 and 1996
» Mentored CFL’s top team quarterback sack champs – 1995 and 2000
» Coordinated 1998 BC Lions defense and developed 1998 Rookie of the Year Steve Mohammed;
this defense led CFL in turnovers, interceptions and allowed fewest rushing touchdowns
» Assisted in the conception, design, development and implementation of football operations
of four new professional football franchises
» Coached defensive line of 2000 CFL Eastern Division Champion Montreal Alouettes;
this unit spearheaded a team that participated in Grey Cup championship game and
lead CFL in nine categories, including most sacks and fewest points allowed

Coaching Chronology

» 2008-09 Edmonton Eskimos CFL Defensive Line Coach
» 2005-07 Baylor University Defensive Line Coach
» 2003-04 Indiana University Director of Football Operations
» 2002-03 Hamilton Tiger-Cats CFL Defensive Line Coach
» 2001 Birmingham Thunderbolts XFL Defensive Coordinator
» 1999-02 Montreal Alouettes Defensive Line Coach
» 1998-99 BC Lions CFL Defensive Coordinator
» 1996-98 Montreal Alouettes CFL Offensive Line Coach
» 1995 Memphis Mad Dogs CFL Defensive Line and Linebacker Coach
» 1991-94 Hamilton Tiger-Cats CFL Defensive Line Coach
» 1991-92 San Antonio Riders NFL Europe Defensive Line Coach
» 1982-89 University of Nevada Defensive Coordinator and Defensive Line Coach
» 1997-81 Northern Illinois University Defensive Line Coach
» 1974-77 Winnebago, IL High School Head Football Coach
» 1973-74 Northern Illinois University Graduate Assistant Football Coach

Playing Career

» Drafted by Chicago Fire, World Football League
» Three-year starting Outside Linebacker, Northern Illinois University (DeKalb)
» Two-time All-City Linebacker, Lane Technical High School (Chicago, Illinois)


» B.S. Education, Northern Illinois University 1974
» Illinois Secondary School Teaching Certificate 1974
» Graduate of Customs & Border Protection Program 2002
(Federal Law Enforcement Training Center at Glynco, GA)

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