By: Jason Pugh, Assistant AD for Media Relations
After spending more than four years at Newberry College, Eric Schwager has joined the Northwestern State Athletic Department as its director of strength and conditioning.
Schwager comes to NSU after serving as the director of strength, conditioning and athletic performance at Newberry College where he helped the Wolves capture the 2016 Southern Atlantic Conference football championship.
At Newberry, Schwager was in charge of a 22-sport program and directly designed and implemented all facets of strength and conditioning for the Wolves’ football, women’s soccer and softball programs while managing a staff of three assistants.
Schwager’s hire is subject to approval of the Board of Supervisors of the University of Louisiana System, of which Northwestern State is a member.
“What I like most about Erik, among his many qualities, is the fact he wants to be here, and he is hitting the ground running,” said Director of Athletics Greg Burke. “His social media posts outlining ‘Stay at Home’ workout concepts reflect the level of dedication he has and will continue to have when our student-athletes return to campus. We all look forward to having Erik and his wife, Ashley, join the NSU Demon family.”
Schwager comes to Natchitoches with a varied background that includes stops at Hartford, where he worked with Major League Baseball first-round selection Sean Newcomb, Limestone College and with the Batavia Muckdogs, a Class A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals.
He also has experience at Princeton, Michigan State and South Florida and was the owner and director of H.I.T. Advanced Training, LLC.
“There was a sense of a family atmosphere,” Schwager said. “Mr. Burke and everyone has been so helpful. I heard great things about the program and the direction of the school. It intrigued me to come down here.
“(Former director of strength and conditioning Jared Myatt) told me I would love it. He said they have great athletic programs, and his experience here was amazing. Thus far, it’s lived up to the hype even if I’m not on campus. The kids and coaches are great. I can’t wait to get them in the weight room.”
Schwager’s background made him an attractive replacement for Myatt, who is now at Texas Tech.
“The versatility of his background and obvious passion for strength and conditioning will be contagious with our student-athletes in every sport,” said Burke, who noted the committee included a member of the athletic training staff as well as a male and female student-athlete. “He articulated a solid, but flexible, approach to sports performance that made a very positive impression on the hiring committee for this position.”
Schwager is a 2009 graduate of Lock Haven University and earned his master’s from California University of Pennsylvania in 2012.
He is a National Strength and Conditioning Association certified strength and conditioning specialist, a National Speed and Explosion Association certified speed specialist and the NASE state director for Connecticut, a National Academy of Sports Medicine PES certified performance enhancement specialist and is CPR/AED certified.