Meet three coaches turning losing records into Prep Bowl quest

Among the 28 football teams still alive in the football state tournament semifinals, half have coaches with at least 100 career victories. That's one end of the spectrum.

Now the view from the other end: Three of them didn't have a winning record before this season.

The state tournament schedule

Meet the three coaches still playing for a state title in November who didn't have winning career records in August:

Breaking even to breaking away

Spring Grove's Kody Moore is in only his third season and was at the .500 mark (8-8) through his first two. The Lions are 12-0 and ranked No. 3 in the Nine-Man poll.

A dozen more on the W side

Another Section 1 coach, Fillmore Central's Chris Mensink, owned a 69-73 record through 15 years before a breakout 12-0 season this year. The Falcons are ranked No. 2 in Class 1A.

Catching up fast

Watertown-Mayer's Andrew Phillips is the lone mentor of the group still below .500. His five-year career started with back-to-back 0-9 seasons. He is now 20-28 thanks to an 11-1 season. His Royals are ranked No. 7 in Class 3A.

All the survivors

Here are the 28 coaches in the semifinals in order of career victories:

Mike Grant, Eden Prairie, 377-78, 40 years

Andy Rostberg, Hutchinson, 216-49, 24 years

Jeff Erdmann, Rosemount, 202-133, 33 years

Tom Schuller, Jackson County Central, 200-52, 24 years

Chad Johnston, Minneota, 198-41, 21 years

Brian Nelson, Fertile-Beltrami, 183-95, 28 years

Steve Hamilton, Elk River, 160-96, 25 years

Bryan Strand, Barnesville, 154-44, 18 years

Brent Schimek, Deer River, 130-111, 25 years

Marc Franz, Rogers, 128-68, 20 years

Dave Muetzel, Mahtomedi, 123-53, 16 years

Mat Mahoney, Fairmont, 116-50, 16 years

Andy Soderberg, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 112-44, 15 years

Jeff Johnson, Chatfield, 111-62, 17 years

Dan Zubich, Mountain Iron-Buhl, 96-42, 14 years

Matt Lombardi, Maple Grove, 93-34, 12 years

Chris Mensink, Fillmore Central, 81-73, 16 years

Tom Kish, Zimmerman, 78-49, 13 years

JJ Helget, Mankato West, 56-7, six years

James Paul, Wheaton-Herman-Norcross, 48-22, seven years

Ben Burk, Lakeville South, 38-3, four years

James Herberg, Rocori, 34-16, five years

Chris Mensen, Simley, 31-9, four years

Adam Meyer, Springfield, 17-5, two years

Adam Tri, Eden Valley-Watkins, 23-14, five years

Kody Moore, Spring Grove, 20-8, three years

Andrew Phillips, Watertown-Mayer, 20-28, five years

Chad Gustafson, New London-Spicer, 15-8, two years