FARGO — North Dakota State has motored through its first 10 football games averaging 41 points and 482.9 yards of total offense per game. Certainly, offensive coordinator Tyler Roehl has had a lot to do with that output.
Roehl also had to help dial up recovery plans for his mother. Marilyn Roehl suffered a seizure last June and the result left her in the intensive care unit for 10 days and a long road of recovery after that.
“You never see this happening,” Tyler said. “You go to bed and you don’t wake up and that was the hardest thing. The hardest time was the first week in the hospital with a lot of unknowns.”
An MRI showed damage to the brain with the severity of it also unknown.
“There was no response and the doctor at the time said we need time, we need time and we put all of our faith in him,” Tyler said.
Meanwhile, Tyler was in his first year preparing to direct the Bison offense after spending five years as a position assistant coach.
June is an important month in college football coaching because of recruiting and summer camps.
“It was hard, it was a tough summer,” he said. “The biggest thing for me was being there for my dad. He’s trying to take care of everything and obviously my wife and my family being there for me.”
Marilyn’s condition was the result of a diabetic hypoglycemic reaction. Bison head coach Matt Entz, meanwhile, told Tyler to address his family situation first. When Marilyn first started coming around, she had no idea Tyler was promoted to offensive coordinator.
“You know Tyler, he keeps everything close to the vest,” Entz said. “I think everyone on the staff knew what was going on.”
Like a Bison West Coast offense powering its way through a game, however, Marilyn slowly but surely got stronger in the ensuing months. She spent five weeks in therapy at a Sanford Health rehabilitation unit. She spent time at a rehabilitation unit in Moorhead.
Four weeks ago, the day before NDSU played Missouri State at Gate City Bank Field in the Fargodome, she felt well enough to hang out in the Bison football office at the Fargodome.
“Her recovery has truly what the doctor said has been a miracle,” Tyler said. “How she’s responding and how she’s able to live. She can take care of herself for the most part. She’s getting her spunk back, that’s the biggest thing. It’s her personality and it’s about getting mom back and I think that will still take some time.”
The recovery has taken a financial toll, however, and friends and family of the Roehls, a family that has been rooted in West Fargo, are throwing a benefit for Marilyn on Friday, Nov. 15, from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Speedway Events Center in West Fargo.
A benefit fund has been set up at Gate City Bank and the local charitable organization Lend A Hand Up has an online gifting avenue at www.LendAHandUp.org.
Tyler was a standout player at West Fargo High School and NDSU. He’s only coached out-of-state for three years and that was one year at Concordia College and two years at Moorhead High School.
“We’ve been lifelong members of the West Fargo community and her friends have been the ones who have started this whole thing of getting the benefit because financially it can be a burden,” Tyler said. “A lot of people in the community have had an outpouring of support for the family. It’s been unreal.”