Dec. 5, 2001

Student excited dad got head job

By Brent Briggeman
Kansan sportswriter

Samantha Mangino shares her excitement with reporters about her father being the new Kansas football coach
Samantha Mangino opted for independence when she chose a college two years ago.

With her family still living in Manhattan, but her father recently hired as an assistant coach at Oklahoma, the logical choices were Kansas State and Oklahoma. But Mangino wanted to get away from familiarity.

“I wanted to be on my own and get the whole college experience,” said Mangino, a sophomore at Kansas and a student assistant in the Athletics Department media relations office. “Now I get the best of both worlds.”


After she spent a year and a half away from home, Mangino´s parents are coming to her.

Her father, Mark Mangino, was named as the 35th Kansas football coach yesterday. The rest of the family, including her 17-year-old brother, Tommy, and their mother, Mary Jane, plan to move to Lawrence immediately.

Despite Mangino´s choice to move away from home two years ago, her father knew she wanted him to take the Kansas job.

“I was excited to call her and tell her, and she was too,” said the new Kansas coach. “I think all along she wanted me to come here. She didn´t come out and say it, but quietly I know this is where she wanted me to end up.”

Though Mangino had his own experiences when his teams played against Kansas in his 11 years in the Big 8 and Big 12 Conferences, he said his daughter´s praise of the University of Kansas helped him make up his mind.

“One of the things that was considered when I was offered this position is, `What does my daughter think of the University of Kansas?´” he said. “It´s been a very positive experience for her and she´s been a great ambassador for the University.”

Mangino struggled to hold back her emotions after yesterday´s press conference.

“I got really teary-eyed because my dad is finally a head coach and I go to school here,” Mangino said as she wiped tears from her eyes. “It´s just a special time in our lives. I don´t think anyone will ever understand how cool it is. It´s overwhelming.”

Al Bohl, Kansas athletics director, noted the new coach´s dedication to family as one of his attractive attributes.

As for his daughter´s privacy, she said her parents assured her it wouldn´t be an issue.

“I don´t know how excited she is, but I´m very excited,” Mary Jane Mangino said. “She said, `Mom, I have my life,´ but we do too.”

Mangino said she would continue to work in the media relations office.