HAMPDEN, Maine — Fred Lower got his introduction to Hampden Academy athletics last year as the Broncos’ first-year head football coach.
Now he’ll oversee the Broncos’ sporting fortunes from a more global perspective after recently being named the school’s athletic administrator.
“I’ve said all along that I got into teaching and coaching to have an impact on young people,” said Lower. “In football you have 50 or 60 people you can impact, and I just thought this was a way I could have a greater impact on hundreds of student-athletes and also hopefully mentor coaches.
“At this point in my career it was the right thing to do, to broaden out a little bit.”
Lower has more than two decades of coaching experience with stints at Husson University in Bangor and Bangor High School preceding his first head coaching post at Hampden.
“I really wasn’t actively seeking (the athletic administrator job) because I still get a lot of joy out of coaching,” said the Bangor native. I’ll miss that coaching piece, but I knew that at some point something like this might come along and this seemed like the right opportunity for me.”
Lower also is an 11-year veteran of the classroom, having taught for one year at Center Drive School in Orrington and for the last 10 years at Bangor High School.
Lower said there will be some differences in managing an entire athletic department compared to focusing on particular sports as he did during his coaching days.
“When it comes down to scheduling and things like that it’s pretty much the same, and as far as supervising coaches and expectations of how we treat kids and accountability and what we want from student-athletes those things are the same,” he said.
“But there are nuances with every sport and there are some I’ll have to get to know, but you have to trust in your coaches. You’ve got good people there who know how things are done and you get feedback from them, so I think it will be pretty smooth.”
Lower replaces Mike Bisson, who this spring was named an assistant executive director with the Maine Principals’ Association.
“I can’t say enough about Mike Bisson,” said Lower. “He did an outstanding job in the way things are run, the facilities are fantastic and there’s great community support and administrative support. I’m real excited in that this isn’t building something but it’s going to be maintaining the great things that have been done and are in place and then looking for ways to improve upon them.
“It’s not any major changes but just looking at things and saying, ‘We do this well, how can we do it just a little bit better?’”
One of Lower’s first tasks as athletic administrator will be to fill the school’s now-vacant head football coaching position. The Broncos finished the 2016 season with a 2-6 record.
“The job’s been posted and we’re in the process of accepting applications,” he said. “Hopefully very shortly we can start the interview process and get someone on board.”