Samson Named Head Football Coach at Great Falls High - News, Sports and Weather

Samson Named Head Football Coach at Great Falls High

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One of the great high school football coaches in Montana is returning to Class AA Football.

Mark Samson will be the new head football coach at Great Falls High, taking over for Matt Krahe, who stepped down after six seasons with the Bison.

The school officially announced the news on Thursday. The hire is pending board approval.

"He's a veteran coach," says GFPS Athletic Director Gary DeGooyer. "He's the kind of guy that can come in and hopefully make a change at Great Falls High."

Samson’s Football career is well documented. He recently led Havre High to a Central A Division championship and a semifinal appearance during his only year with the Blue Ponies. Before that, Samson was the head coach at MSU-Northern for ten years. 

Samson was widely known for his success at Helena Capital. He coached the Bruins from 1997-2003, compiling a 67-12 record and winning three Class AA state titles in 1999, 2000 and 2002. Samson also had stints at Missoula Loyola, Helena High and Carroll College.

“I felt this was an opportunity to get back in the AA,” Samson told KFBB. “My past history of Great Falls High, for years and years they were unbelievably good. They have great athletes and were always very competitive. Even my years at Capital they were very competitive. So I know there’s a great tradition at Great Falls High School.”

Samson was recently named a finalist for the Rocky Mountain Football head coaching vacancy that ultimately went to Jason Petrino, the nephew of his wife Kelly. Samson has lived in Havre since 2004 and was sad to have to leave.

“Havre is a great athletic community,” says Samson. “They support their sports tremendously. 

Samson had a meeting with his team on Thursday morning to break the news to his players.

“I know for a fact there’s going to be some kids I miss terribly,” says Samson. “I’m a coach and I’m looking at an opportunity that I can do a pretty good job at…..I’ve developed some great friendships in this town. The people have always treated the Samson family great. That goes for my wife, goes for myself, goes for my three children.”

Samson tells KFBB that none of his current assistant coaches will follow him to Great Falls, which includes his son-in-law and Quarterback Coach Travis Dean, who was his QB at MSU-Northern.

Of course Mark isn’t the only Samson coaching in Class AA. His son Kyle, who played for him at MSU-Northern, is currently the head coach at Flathead.

Mark is excited at the opportunity to return to Class AA.

“I’m going to show the kids that we’re going to be enthusiastic when we come to our job every day. We’re going to show these kids that they’re better than what maybe people say they are, and that they’re better than what they might think they are.”

KFBB will continue to keep you updated on Samson’s coaching staff and everything Great Falls High as everything develops.

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