Coaching Staff

Bryan Nikkel

Head Coach

  • 2007 graduate of Southwest Minnesota State University
  • The 2017 campaign will be Coach Nikkel's third year as skipper of the Norse program
  • In 2016, he led the Norse to a record of 34-14, the Iowa Conference Tournament championship and a trip to the NCAA III National Baseball Tournament Central Regional
  • In 2016, The Norse set single season school records for wins (34), hits (485), and doubles (116)
  • In 2016, senior catcher Mitch Knippenberg was named a third team ABCA/Rawlings All-American, only the second Luther player in school history to earn this honor
  • In 2016, Four Norse were named all-conference including Iowa Conference Pitcher of the Year junior Nate Beckman
  • Took over the Norse baseball program after serving as the top assistant and recruiting coordinator at Augustana College, Sioux Falls, S.D for four years
  • During this stretch Augustana produced four 30-plus win seasons; made two NCAA II National Tournament appearances; made four NSIC Tournament appearances capturing the tournament championship in 2014
  • During his coaching career he has recruited and coached nine players who have gone on to play professionally
  • Four-year letter winner as a catcher at SMSU and twice served as team captain
  • Following his playing days he was an assistant coach at Southwest Minnesota State for three years (2007-2010)
  • He has also served as Head Coach for the Marshall, Minn., American Legion baseball team for two years (2009-2011) and the Grand Rapids, Minn., VFW baseball team for three years (2004-2007)

Tanner Neale

Assistant Coach

  • 2015 graduate of Southwest Minnesota State University
  • 2017 will be Tanner's second year as an assistant coach
  • Three-year starter at catcher while at SMSU
  • Three times received team's Best Defensive Player Award (2013-15) becoming the second player in school history to earn this award three years in a row
  • Holds the school record for highest fielding percentage (.997), committed just two errors in four years
  • Twice presented team's Mustang Award
  • Derrick Keller Award winner (determination, courage and perseverance)
  • Assistant coach with the Nevada Griffons of the M.I.N.K. Summer Collegiate Baseball League this past summer


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