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Illinois State offensive coordinator Kurt Beathard during practice in September, 2015. Beathard left the ISU program but it it was announced Thursday that he will return. 

ISU head football coach Brock Spack has promoted a pair of coaches to serve the role as offensive coordinator. Assistant coaches Billy Dicken and Dan Clark will take the reins of the offense amidst Kurt Beathard stepping down as offensive coordinator last week. Beathard cited spending time with family and being closer to home were the main reasons in his decision.

“Timing was one of the biggest factors when it came to filling the empty position of offensive coordinator,” Spack said. “I also did not want to upset the dynamic of this team with so many players returning. I want to keep the scheme as similar as possible and these two have been great for our staff and will do a nice job of play calling.”

Dicken served as the wide receivers’ coach the past two seasons. He was a part of the success of a trio of Redbird wide outs. Anthony Warrum’s record-setting season in 2015 was under the helm of Dicken. Warrum reeled in 241 yards versus South Dakota State and was also named to MVFC First-Team selection.

Cameron Meredith and Lechein Neblett were the first Illinois State teammates in program history to both have 1,000 receiving yards in one season.

Clark returns for his fourth season at Illinois State. He has held the position of offensive line coach. All five starting offensive lineman will return to the Redbirds from 2015.

“All of our coaches on the offensive side are capable of being coordinators, and two of them already have titles,” Spack said. “This is a very close group and I think this situation will work best to the going in the right direction and not exhaust our coaches.”

Fall workouts begin Aug. 7 in preparation for ISU’s Sept. 3 opener versus Valparaiso.

JASON KLAIER is a senior journalism major and a sports editor at The Vidette. Questions or comments regarding his article can be directed to at vidette_jmklaer@ilstu.edu. Follow him on Twitter at @JasonKlaerISU

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