By Montana Tech Information/ Press Release
Beloved Oredigger football coach Bob Green will receive Montana Technological University’s highest honor, the Chancellor’s Award of Distinction, during homecoming weekend, September 15-16, 2023. Coach Green will be honored at a reception Friday night, along with festivities before and during the football game vs. Eastern Oregon.
Established in 2021, the award recognizes individuals who have achieved the most distinguished personal and professional accomplishments while also serving and bringing distinction to Montana Tech.
Over his 24-year coaching career at the university, from 1987 to 2010, Coach Green was the winningest football coach in the university’s history, posting a 140-116-1 record that includes five trips to the NAIA National Playoffs and the 1996 NAIA championship game.
“It’s a huge honor,” Green said, adding that he credits his teams’ successes to his assistant coaches and players. “The head coach is just one member of the band. It’s not the coaches that win. It’s the players. The players win the games and deserve all the credit in the world.”
“I’m not sure there is anyone that has brought more attention and notoriety to Montana Tech than Coach Green,” Montana Tech Chancellor Les Cook said. “He’s a legend at Tech, in our community and well beyond and he’s poured his heart and soul into everything Oredigger. The lives he’s touched and continues to influence is staggering. We’re proud of his impact and look forward to celebrating him with this honor.”
Green is a Marine Corps veteran who served in the Vietnam War. After completing service Green earned a football scholarship by walking on as a freshman at Kearney State University (now University of Nebraska State University at Kearney). Green was a self-professed “gym rat” and one day after his senior season wrapped up, his coaches called him in and asked if he would be an assistant coach in exchange for a scholarship to allow him to finish classes.
“I owe those coaches a great deal,” Green said. “I’m eternally grateful.”
Green’s coaching journey saw stops at high schools in Minatare and Broken Bow, Nebraska, and the University of Northern Colorado and Northwest Missouri State. He became famous on Montana television stations during his tenure as coach for his catchy similes, metaphors, and quips about the team and life.
Once the internet and social media proliferated, Green became a world-famous internet celebrity.
“The internet came along, and those things get on there,” Green notes. “I’m kind of like Halley’s Comet. I come around every five or six months.”
Videos on YouTube, TikTok, and Facebook have millions of views, though Green’s personal social media participation is limited to a post a week on Twitter and Facebook, facilitated by current Oredigger Golf Coach Sean Ryan. It is a tool Green used as a development officer for the Montana Tech Foundation from 2010 to 2018.
“Coach Green epitomizes what it means to be an Oredigger and his name has become synonymous with that of Montana Tech,” Athletic Director Matt Stepan said. “His service to our institution as a coach, administrator, and fundraiser will continue to impact our university for generations. Like a woodpecker in a petrified forest, Coach Green has stayed busy and looked for opportunities to advance the profile of Montana Tech. He remains a great ambassador for our institution, and continues to be a mentor and friend to me. I can think of no one more deserving or befitting of this honor than Coach Green.”
Green says he’s enjoyed every job he’s ever had, “but Montana Tech was the best.”
Join us in celebrating Coach Green’s tremendous contributions to the university on Saturday, September 16 at Alumni Coliseum for pregame recognition and events.
In honor of Coach Green and his contributions to Digger Athletics, Montana Tech, and the Butte community, those who wish to honor him are encouraged to make a gift to the Digger Athletics Annual Fund in support of Bob Green Field at Alumni Coliseum. These funds will be used to directly support the health and well-being of student-athletes through the revitalization of the Bob Green Field.
Donations can be made directly to the Digger Annual Fund online at bit.ly/BobGreenField.
If you would like to speak to someone directly about how to support the Digger Athletic Fund and our Montana Tech student-athletes and programs, please contact Tommy Heppler at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 406-496-4405.
The Digger Athletic Fund (DAF) is the fundraising arm of Montana Tech Athletics, which operates under the Montana Tech Foundation, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization recognized as a public charity.