In January of 2021, Mike Leonard was approached and asked by his good friend Bud Boughton to help him lead the Indiana chapter of an organization that has been thriving since 2000 called Team Focus. The mission of Team Focus is to help guide young men within the age-group of 10-18 years old, who do not have a father-figure in their lives. The goal is to help fill the fatherless gap and help teach them leadership skills and positive values that can steer them to the “Ultimate Victory.”
Coach Leonard had been the head football coach at Franklin College from 2003-2019, and had been in the coaching profession for 36 years. In his early days of coaching, he had also been both Hanover College’s head track and field coach and head tennis coach, while he was an assistant football coach.
When Coach Leonard took over the reins as the head football coach, his team of players and coaches quickly turned Franklin College into a powerhouse at the Division III level. He compiled a 129-55 (70.1%) record over 17 seasons and captured 11 outright or shared conference championships. He led his team to nine playoff appearances during that time and ended his coaching career as the all-time leader in coaching wins.
More than 200 student-athletes earned all-conference accolades during Leonard's time as the head coach with 12 players earning one of the league's player of the year honors and 11 players collecting All-American recognition. Coach Leonard himself was recognized as the HCAC Coach of the Year on seven different occasions.
Before making an impact as Franklin's head coach, Coach Leonard made coaching stops all over the world, working on the sidelines at DePauw Univ., Wittenberg Univ., Hanover College, Holy Cross College, the Univ. of Alabama and Butler Univ. and with a professional team in Tokyo, Japan. After finishing his prep career at Speedway High School in 1980, he went on to play collegiately at Hanover College before stepping right into the coaching ranks. While coaching at DePauw, Leonard earned his master’s degree in 1986.
The Central Indiana Chapter of the College Football Hall of Fame recognized him with a Distinguished American Award in June 2021. He was also selected into the class of 2021 for the Indiana Football Hall of Fame.
Coach Leonard was named to be Franklin Community High School’s first-ever Unified Flag Football coach, with the season to begin this fall. He also enjoys kayaking, fly fishing, and learning how to better play the guitar. He and his wife, Susan reside in Franklin, and have two adult children, Bart and Emily, and son-in-law Ethan. Mike and Susan enjoy time with their two dogs, Bear and Raymond.