Fairmont State released head football coach Mike Lopez from his contract Monday."Mike is a fine football coach and we appreciate the efforts he gave to this team over the past 10 years," Fairmont State athletic director Rusty Elliott said in a university release. "Our team has excelled in the classroom and Mike's hard work in stressing the academic side of student life has been critical in that progress."The Falcons were 4-6 overall and 4-4 in the West Virginia Conference this season. Lopez was a defensive end and team captain at Fairmont State during the 1996 and 1997 seasons and helped guide the Falcons to the WVC championship in 1996.In six years as head coach, Lopez had a 30-35 overall record. Lopez was Fairmont's defensive coordinator from 2002 through 2007 when he took over head-coaching duties.
Fairmont State will begin a national search to replace Lopez "in the near future," according to the release.
COLLEGE SOCCER: West Virginia's Uwem Etuk and Eric Schoenle anad Marshall's Daniel Withrow are among a group of 54 NCAA Division I college seniors invited to participated in the adidas MLS Player Combine.The three players will take the field in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Jan. 11-15, and are eligible for selection in the MLS SuperDraft set for Jan. 17 in Indianapolis.Schoenle, a two-year All-American, completed his four-year career with 14 goals, five assists and seven game-winning goals. Etuk, recently named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-Great Lakes Region third team, finished his collegiate career with eight goals, 18 assists and three game-winning goals. Withrow made 286 saves in goal for the Thundering Herd and posted 21 shutouts in his four-year career.