Keiser’s Seahawks set to join football ranks

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Florida’s newest college football program has campuses on three continents, no stadium, a coach hand-picked by a former national champion, 110 redshirts and 13 months to go until its first game.

So when Keiser University head coach Doug Socha discusses his new job, he’s used to fielding a lot of questions.

“There’s just a lot going on,” he said. “We’ve got to fill a roster, we’ve got to recruit the state, fill a coaching staff… have daily conversations about facilities, where we’re going to play and where we’re going to put these kids.”

The first-year college coach discussed the challenge of building a program from the ground up Tuesday at Keiser’s Jacksonville campus on the Southside.

Socha’s stop was the second of 17 visits on a statewide tour to spread the word about the fledgling football program at Keiser, a school that many people still associate with online learning.

The team plans to kick off in 2018 at a still-to-be-completed stadium with 1,500 to 2,000 seats on its flagship campus in West Palm Beach.

Athletic director Kris Swogger said Keiser just finished laying down sod for its practice field and is in the process of setting up a football locker room. The first practice is scheduled for Aug. 28.

The Seahawks compete in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, where their Sun Conference opponents include schools like Ave Maria and Webber International.

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