University of Sioux Falls ’07
University of Sioux Falls ’10
Since taking over the Dakota Wesleyan University football team, Ross Cimpl has guided the Tigers to six-straight winning seasons. Cimpl is 44-21 overall in seven seasons as the head coach, including a 9-2 record in 2015 and an 8-3 record in 2016. Cimpl is second for most wins by a coach in DWU football history. In his fourth season, the Tigers were ranked No. 15 in the final NAIA Coaches’ Poll, and in his fifth season, DWU finished No. 16 in the final NAIA Coaches’ Poll, just missing out on the national playoffs each year.
Cimpl graduated a plethora of seniors from the 2017 season, including reigning GPAC Player-of-the-Year, Dillon Turner, and All-GPAC First Team member, Hayden Adams. Cimpl guided the Tigers to a 6-5 record in 2017 while Turner and Adams helped the offense average 43.6 points per game and 561 total yards per game.
In 2016, DWU finished the season winning six of its last seven games. For the second straight year, the Tigers finished the season in third place in the highly competitive Great Plains Athletic Conference. The Tigers saw 12 players named to the All-GPAC Team, two players named to the CoSIDA Academic All-America Team and five were NAIA Scholar-Athletes.
The 2015 Tigers finished with nine wins, the second most in school history, while ending the season in third place in the GPAC. The Tigers picked up 15 All-GPAC honors, six NAIA Scholar-Athlete awards and saw four players earn a spot on the CoSIDA Academic All-District Team. The Tigers were also selected as an NAIA Scholar Team for outstanding overall GPA.
Cimpl has coached 69 All-GPAC honorees, including 17 first-team and 19 second-team members. There have been four NAIA All-Americans, three Beyond Sports Network All-Americans, 21 Daktronics/NAIA Scholar-Athletes and three CoSIDA Academic All-Americans at DWU under Cimpl. Following the 2013 season, Cimpl was named the GPAC Coach-of-the-Year and the AFCA Region 4 Coach-of-the-Year.
The six years under Cimpl have been the most successful similar span in the more than 100-year history of DWU football. One year after the 2015 graduating class compiled 30 wins, breaking the school record for victories by one class, the 2016 graduating class won 32 games to break the record.
Before coming to Dakota Wesleyan, Cimpl spent three years as an assistant coach at the University of Sioux Falls while pursuing a master’s degree in business administration, which he received in 2010. He coached everything from the defensive backs to the special teams to tight ends, wide receivers and running backs. Cimpl was a part of the Cougars’ NAIA national titles in 2008 and 2009 and their runner-up finish in 2007. He helped the Cougars to a 42-1 record from 2007 to 2009. Sioux Falls won three straight GPAC titles in those years. From 2002 to 2006, Cimpl was a member of the Cougar football team. He was a team captain in 2005 and 2006, a member of the 2006 national championship team and was named the team’s Special Teams Player-of-the-Year in 2005. Cimpl was on the dean’s list at USF and earned Academic All-American honors in 2005.
Cimpl lives in Mitchell with his spouse, Linda. Cimpl has two sons, Preston and Porter, and a daughter, Charlee.