As an undergraduate student at Western Michigan University, Ben Armer spent two years earning credits toward a business degree.
But the 2007 Janesville Parker High graduate and standout punter on the Broncos football team—he averaged 41.5 yards a punt his senior season—had an epiphany the summer before his junior year and decided to switch majors.
Armer felt a degree in exercise science would better suit his on-the-go lifestyle.
“I just couldn’t see myself sitting behind a desk for 30 years,” Armer said. “I wanted to be on my feet, and I knew there would be plenty of opportunities in that field.”
Armer graduated with his degree in exercise science in 2012 and immediately took a job at his alma mater as the football program’s strength and conditioning intern.
He spent one year at Western Michigan before becoming a strength and conditioning graduate assistant at Ball State University in 2014.
After one year at Ball State, he took a job as the assistant strength and conditioning coach at Miami of Ohio University.
Armer left Miami of Ohio after one season with the football team and is currently the Director of Strength and Conditioning for the Ball State football program. He has held that position since 2016 and wouldn’t trade it for the world, he said.
And although he knows the same job with an NFL team or at a Power 5 conference program would be much more lucrative, he doesn’t plan on going anywhere.
“I truly love being at Ball State and being a part of this great program,” Armer said.
“I’ve been a part of the MAC (Mid-American Conference) since 2007 and love what it stands for. It’s a blue collar and gritty conference, which really fits my personality.”
Armer was a standout athlete at Parker.
He earned an all-Big Eight and all-state selection in football.
He was an integral part of Parker’s 2006 conference championship team that was top-ranked in Division 1 and went undefeated during the regular season before being upset in the first round of the WIAA playoffs.
At Western Michigan, Armer was an all-MAC selection as a punter, three-time academic all-MAC and named to the Ray Guy Award watch list three straight seasons.
Armer is now a proud member of the Collegiate Strength & Conditioning Coaches Association and the National Strength & Conditioning Association.
“Those two associations are the gold standard of our profession, and I’m honored to be a member of both,” Armer said.
Armer’s weekly schedule at Ball State, especially during the season, is a busy one. His job is to keep all members of the football team in shape and to develop proper eating, studying and lifestyle habits.
Every day is scripted down to the minute, whether it’s a recovery day in the pool, an upper body workout or a day to work on core muscles.
“These players know that every day is a point of emphasis and another opportunity for them to get better,” Armer said. “And I have great players to work with.”
Armer has been married for three years to his wife, Crystal, and has two sons. Lincoln is 2 years old and Owen is 2 months old.
“I’ve got a great wife, two healthy kids and a job I love,” Armer said. “Life is good.”