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      Finlandia University to launch football program

      Finlandia University has taken another important step towards campus growth by announcing the launch of a football program for 2015.

      This is all part of their seven-year Strategic Plan to commit to launch seven new NCAA Division III sports programs over the next seven years.

      The goal is to join the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC), as a window may soon be opening to do so, according to Finlandia Director of Athletics, Chris Salani.

      Finlandia is also actively seeking a head coach to lead their new program and is currently accepting applications. Their goal is to have the hiring process completed by mid-April.

      Finlandia President Phillip Johnson believes the benefits of the addition of a football program reach far beyond just athletics, stating, "Growing our NCAA III programs reaps benefits for all our students, our entire campus community. It is good for Finlandia. It is good for the Copper Country. It is good for the Upper Peninsula. So let's do some good."

      The university hopes to have a roster of 70 ready to go by the fall of 2015 so the Lions can begin their varsity competition.