The architect of one of the top rushing offenses in the FCS, Brent Thompson enters his fifth season as the head coach at The Citadel.
Thompson owns an overall record of 26-20, including a program-record 10 wins during his first season in 2016.
Under Thompson’s guidance, the Bulldogs have ranked in the top-10 in rushing offense each of the last four seasons. The Citadel ranked sixth nationally in 2019 at 268.2 yards per game, ninth in 2018 at 283.6 yards per game, second in 2017 at 294.6 yards per game and led the nation in 2016 at 348.2 rushing yards per game.
The 2019 season saw the Bulldogs overcome some early adversity to pull off the biggest win in the FCS. The Citadel went on the road in late September and knocked off Georgia Tech, 27-24, in overtime. It was the Bulldogs’ first win over an ACC opponent, and the only victory by a FCS team over a Power 5 team that year.
The Bulldog offense was not one dimensional as it also threw for 1,195 yards and 14 touchdowns, the most in both categories since the 2009 season.
The catalyst of the attack was quarterback Brandon Rainey who became just the second quarterback in school history to rush for and throw for at least 10 touchdowns in the same season.
The Bulldogs closed out the 2018 season with one of the most impressive four-game stretches in program history. The Citadel outscored its three FCS opponents 123-65, including 69-3 in the second half of those games.
The lone loss during that stretch was on the road at Alabama when the Bulldogs shocked the college football world by being tied, 10-10, with the Crimson Tide at the half.
Thompson was named The Citadel’s 25th head coach on Jan. 19, 2016 and put together the best season of any first-year head coach in program history.
The Bulldogs followed up their championship the season prior by going 10-2 overall and 8-0 in conference action, marking just the seventh undefeated season in Southern Conference history.
The record marked the most wins for a first-year coach at The Citadel and earned Thompson SoCon Coach of the Year honors.
Thompson produced three All-Americans, two Academic All-Americans, the Southern Conference Defensive Player of the Year, the Southern Conference Jacobs Blocking Award winner and 11 All-Southern Conference Performers in 2016. In addition, The Citadel claimed eight SoCon player of the week accolades, one SoCon Student-Athlete of the Week and one conference player of the month.
The Bulldogs led the FCS in rushing yards per game at 348.2 yards per game, the second-highest single-season total in school history. It was the third time, and first since 1994, that the Bulldogs led the country in rushing.
The Citadel also led the FCS with a nation-low 3.3 tackles-for-loss allowed per game. Additionally, the Bulldogs ranked in the top-10 in the FCS in 12 different team categories.
Thompson’s approach to developing a complete team was on display in his first season in charge. The Bulldogs ranked seventh in FCS in pass defense, led by SoCon interception champion Dee Delaney, and eighth in the country in total defense, improving by more than 50 yards from the previous season to allow only 302.7 yards per game. The Bulldogs also ranked first in the Southern Conference with only 30 touchdowns allowed in 12 games, an average of 2.5 per game.
Special teams played a crucial role in The Citadel’s success with a dangerous return game, led by SoCon punt return champion DeAndre Schoultz, clutch kicking and one of the best coverage units in the conference.
The Bulldogs faced a tall task in Thompson’s second season as The Citadel boasted one of the nation’s youngest offensive lines. The group helped pave the way for the nation’s second-best rushing attack, including rushing for over 400 yards in back-to-back wins over Chattanooga and VMI.
The 2017 team also featured a defense that led the SoCon in total defense, rushing defense, and was among the league leaders in scoring defense until the season’s final week.
Eight Bulldogs earned All-SoCon honors during the 2017 season, including first team honorees, center Tyler Davis and safeties Kailik Williams, and Aron Spann III. Davis would be named All-American by College Sports Madness after playing all but four snaps at center for the Bulldogs.
Thompson took over as the head coach after serving the previous two seasons as offensive coordinator.
In 2015, The Citadel earned a co-Southern Conference championship behind a then-school-record-tying six SoCon wins and finished 9-4 overall after advancing to the second round of the NCAA FCS Playoffs for only the second time in school history. The Bulldogs, who finished the season with a conference-best +117 scoring margin that included a +100 margin in SoCon play, earned the program’s first road playoff win with a 41-38 victory at Coastal Carolina in the first round of the playoffs.
In The Citadel’s 23-22 win at South Carolina, B-Back Tyler Renew piled up a career-high 174 rushing yards, the most allowed at home by South Carolina since 2006 when Doak Walker Award winner and Heisman Trophy finalist Darren McFadden rushed for 219 yards. Renew’s total was higher than five teams’ rushing totals against the Gamecocks in 2015. The next week, at Coastal Carolina, the Bulldogs broke a school record with four 100-yard rushers and piled up 524 rushing yards, the most in an NCAA Playoff game since 2012 and the second-highest single-game rushing total in FCS in 2015 behind The Citadel’s 535 yards in the season opener.
Renew and offensive lineman Sam Frye were named All-Americans, and Frye and fellow offensive lineman Kyle Weaver earned All-Southern Conference honors. In addition, offensive lineman Tyler Davis and B-Back Evan McField earned spots on the All-Southern Conference Freshman Team.
As a team, the Bulldogs broke school records for all-purpose yards, total offense yards and rushing yards. The Citadel led the Southern Conference and ranked second in FCS with an average of 346.9 rushing yards per game, an average of 17.21 yards per completion and allowing 0.62 sacks per game. The Bulldogs also led the SoCon with 5.70 yards per rush and 41 rushing touchdowns.
Quarterback Dominique Allen led the Southern Conference and tied for 17th in FCS, second among quarterbacks, with 13 rushing touchdowns. Allen also ranked third in the SoCon in points responsibility with 104, fifth with 953 rushing yards, seventh with an average of 140.3 yards of total offense per game and eighth with an average of 6.0 points scored per game.
In his first year at The Citadel, Thompson was instrumental in the development of Aaron Miller as the senior ranked second in the Southern Conference with 1,080 rushing yards, the highest total by a Bulldog since 1998, and finished the regular season 31st in the nation and second among quarterbacks. The B-back combination of Renew and Isiaha Smith rushed for 1,352 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Thompson came to Charleston after coordinating the offense at Lenoir-Rhyne from 2010-13. Operating out of the triple option offense, Thompson’s attack was tops in rushing in Division II in 2013, averaging 370.9 yards per game, and set the NCAA record for all divisions in rushing yards in a season with 5,563 while advancing to the Division II National Championship Game and a 13-2 overall record.
In 2012 Lenoir-Rhyne compiled 4,515 yards on the ground and finished second in the nation in rushing at 376.2 per game. The Bears also had their highest output of total offense in a season (430.6 ypg) since 1994 and averaged 35.2 points per game.
In 2011 Thompson guided Lenoir-Rhyne to nearly 400 yards of offense per game (397.0 ypg) while the squad averaged 33.6 points per outing. The Bears also ranked third in the nation in rushing (287.1 ypg), and quarterback Major Herron was named to the all-league first team. In his first season at L-R, Thompson headed up a Bear attack in 2010 that averaged more than 400 yards of total offense for the first time in 18 years and led Division II in rushing at 319.5 yards per game.
Thompson went to Lenoir-Rhyne after serving as an assistant coach at Bucknell for seven seasons. In 2009, Thompson served as the Bison’s offensive coordinator in addition to his duties as recruiting coordinator and offensive line coach. Thompson started his tenure at the Lewisburg, Pa., school as the wide receivers coach in 2003. As quarterbacks and fullbacks coach in 2004, Thompson mentored quarterback Daris Wilson to first-team All-Patriot League honors.
Prior to Bucknell, Thompson coached the 2001 and 2002 seasons at Northeastern where he oversaw the running backs and was the team’s video coordinator. In 2002, Thompson helped lead the Huskies to the Atlantic 10 championship. Thompson coached All-American L.J. McKanas, who broke the school’s career rushing record and was second in the nation in that category in 2001.
Thompson, a 1998 graduate of Norwich with a degree in peace, war and diplomacy, was a two-year letterman as a defensive back on the football squad. He began his coaching career at Dickinson in the fall of 1998 as a graduate assistant and worked with the outside linebackers before serving as the wide receivers coach at Stony Brook in 2000.
A native of Poughkeepsie, New York, Thompson is married to the former Tiffany Lebengood. The couple has seven-year old twin daughters, Harper and Emma.
Lou Conte enters his fifth season as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks/B-Backs coach under Brent Thompson at The Citadel.
The 2020 season will mark the eighth year that Conte and Thompson have worked together. The two were together at The Citadel in 2014, and spent three years together on the offensive staff at Lenoir-Rhyne.
The Citadel has possessed one of the top ball control and rushing attacks in the FCS over the past four seasons. Over that span, the Bulldogs have ranked in the Top-10 nationally in both categories.
The 2019 season featured one of the top dual-threat quarterbacks in recent history in Brandon Rainey. He rushed for 900 yards and 17 touchdowns, while also throwing for 1,114 yards and 13 touchdowns. Rainey is just the second quarterback to rush and throw for at least 10 touchdowns in a season.
Rainey was not the only part of the rushing attach as B-Back Clay Harris ran for 699 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
The Bulldogs were balanced in 2018 as five different players carried the ball at least 90 times and rushed for over 350 yards. B-Back Lorenzo Ward led the attack with 722 yards on 179 carries.
The offense improved down the stretch with the insertion of Rainey at quarterback. The sophomore rushed for 529 yards in just four games, leading the Bulldogs to a 3-1 mark over that stretch.
Over that four-game stretch, the Bulldogs rushed for 317.3 yards per contest. That stretch included a 275 yard performance at Alabama.
In his first two seasons as the offensive coordinator, Conte led an offense that ranked in the top two nationally each year, including leading the country in rushing in 2016. The 348.2 yards per game was the second highest in program history.
B-Back Tyler Renew became the 15th player to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark with 1,096 yards. The mark included a career-high 285-yard effort in the overtime victory over Samford.
Conte spent the 2015 season as the quarterbacks coach at his alma mater, Springfield College. In his one season with the Pride, Conte mentored second-team all-conference performer Jake Eglintine.
Conte first joined the staff at The Citadel in 2014 as the A-Backs coach. During that season, the group rushed for more than 1,500 yards as the Bulldogs ranked second nationally in rushing yards per game.
Prior to his first stint at The Citadel, Conte spent three seasons as running backs coach at Lenoir-Rhyne, where Coach Thompson was the offensive coordinator. In 2013, the Bears ranked first in Division II with an average of 370.9 yards per game and broke the NCAA record for all divisions with 5,563 total rushing yards. That season, Lenoir-Rhyne won 13 games and advanced to the Division II national championship game.
In 2012, Conte’s running backs helped Lenoir-Rhyne finish second in Division II with a rushing average of 376.2 yards per game as Jarrod Spears and Isaiah Whitaker earned All-South Atlantic Conference accolades. In his first season with the Bears, the rushing game ranked third in the nation and Whitaker was named an all-conference performer.
Conte went to Lenoir-Rhyne after serving as defensive coordinator at Williston Northampton School in Easthampton, Massachusetts, in 2010. There, he also was an assistant athletic director, sports information director, physical education teacher, junior varsity wrestling coach and assistant varsity lacrosse coach.
Conte’s first coaching job was in 2005 as an assistant head coach at Maine Maritime Academy, where he also served as head men’s lacrosse coach. He was a graduate assistant at his alma mater in 2008 and 2009, where he helped Springfield win the ECAC Northeast Championship Bowl Game in 2009.
Conte played on the Springfield football team while in school, helping the Pride claim the Freedom Football Conference championship in 2002 and 2003 and the Eastern College Athletic Conference title in 2004. That year, Springfield ranked No. 1 in the East Region and No. 4 nationally.
A native of Agawam, Massachusetts, Conte earned two degrees at Springfield. He completed his bachelor’s degree in 2004 and his Master’s degree in 2010.He is a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the American Football Coaches Association and United States Lacrosse.
Tony Grantham enters his second season as the defensive coordinator, safeties coach at The Citadel.
In his first season with the Bulldogs, Grantham transitioned the defense into a 3-4 scheme. The defense continued to improve throughout the season and held two of the top rushing offenses in the country under their season averages. For the year, the Bulldogs led the Southern Conference in rushing yards allowed per game.
The Bulldogs were led by All-American linebacker Willie Eubanks III. He recorded 112 tackles, including 11.5 tackles-for-loss.
The back end of the defense was led by Chris Beverly. The sophomore ranked second on the team with 71 tackles, while tieing for the team lead with seven pass break-ups. His biggest play of the season came at ETSU when he stopped the receiver at the one-yard line to secure the victory.
Fellow safety Sean-Thomas Faulkner was third on the team with 70 tackles, two sacks and four pass break-ups.
Grantham comes to the Lowcountry after spending the previous season as the outside linebackers coach at The United States Naval Academy. The stint was the third for Grantham in Annapolis.
He spent the 2017 season as the defensive coordinator at Western Illinois. In his one season with the Leathernecks, WIU ranked 22nd nationally against the run, sixth in interceptions, 13th in takeaways, 23rd in sacks and 13th in tackles-for-loss.
The Leathernecks finished the season 8-4 and qualified for the FCS playoffs, holding their opponents to 24 points or less in eight contests.
Prior to his time at WIU, Grantham spent three years as the linebackers coach and special teams coordinator at Louisville, helping the Cardinals win 26 games and make a bowl game all three seasons. Louisville finished in the top 20 in total defense in two of his three seasons and the Cardinals forced 81 turnovers over those three years.
Grantham was the outside linebackers coach at Navy from 2008-2013. He was influential in guiding Navy to a 9-4 record in 2013 and a win over Middle Tennessee State in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. The 2013 Navy team was just the fifth in the program’s 132-year history of playing football to win at least nine games, beat Army and win a bowl game. The Navy defense held eight of its 13 opponents below their scoring average for the season.
In 2012, Grantham helped lead Navy to an 8-5 record and a berth in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl. Navy defeated Air Force, 28-21, in overtime, and Army, 17-13, to win the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy.
The 2009 season was one of the program’s best, as Navy tied a then school record with 10 wins. The defense finished 18th in the country in scoring defense (19.4 points per game) and sixth in red zone defense.
Grantham returned to the Naval Academy in the spring of 2008 after spending one year at Campbell, where he served as the linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator.
He served four years at the Naval Academy, training the defensive line and outside linebackers from 2003-06. Navy posted a 35-15 record in Grantham’s four years in Annapolis, winning four-straight Commander-In-Chief’s trophies and appearing in four-straight bowl games.
While at Navy, Grantham has been part of a staff that went 18-2 in Service Academy games including a 10-0 mark against Army.
Grantham joined the Naval Academy staff after two seasons as a graduate assistant at LSU under current Alabama head coach Nick Saban. While in Baton Rouge, Grantham spent one year working on the offensive side of the ball and one year working on the defensive side. In 2001, the Tigers went 10-3 and won the SEC Championship Game over No. 2 Tennessee, knocking the Vols out of the BCS title game. LSU went on to win the Sugar Bowl. In 2002, LSU, which finished the season fifth nationally in total defense, shared the SEC Western Division title and played in the Cotton Bowl.
Grantham began his collegiate coaching career at Eastern Illinois, where he oversaw the Panthers outside linebackers and special teams. EIU, behind the play of quarterback Tony Romo, advanced to the NCAA I-AA Playoffs, and finished the season ranked 15th nationally.
Grantham, a 2000 graduate of Radford, received his degree in physical education. He and his wife Mollie have three children Jake, Ruthie and Luke.
Ron Boyd enters his seventh season as the offensive line coach at The Citadel.
The offensive line has been the anchor of one of the most successful rushing attacks in the FCS. Through his first six seasons, the Bulldogs’ offensive line has paved the way for fifty-four 100-yard rushing performances, including a school-record 14 in 2015.
During his tenure, the Bulldogs have ranked in the top-10 nationally in rushing yards per game every season. The 2016 Bulldogs led the nation by averaging 348.2 yards per game.
Boyd has produced at least one first-team all-conference selection in each of his first six seasons.
The 2019 Bulldogs rushed for over 300 yards in six of the 12 games, including a season-high 378 yards in the win over Mercer. Additionally, The Citadel rushed for 320 yards in the upset victory over Georgia Tech. It marked the second-straight year the Bulldogs rushed for at least 275 yards against a FBS opponent.
Senior Drew McEntyre was a first-team all-conference selection, while Johnathan Toole was selected as a First-Team Freshman All-American by HERO Sports.
Boyd may have put together one of his best coaching jobs in 2017 when he took one of the youngest groups in college football and turned them into one of the best blocking units in the FCS.
Despite starting three freshmen along the front, the Bulldogs managed to rank second in the country in rushing at 294.6 yards per game. The leader of the group was Tyler Davis who went on to be named a Second-Team All-American by College Sports Madness.
The 2016 season was a record-setting one for the Bulldogs as they put together just the eighth undefeated season in Southern Conference history on their way to capturing their second-straight championship.
The Bulldogs eclipsed the 400-yard mark five times on their way to leading the country in rushing yards and time of possession.
Tackle Isaiah Pinson won the Southern Conference’s Jacobs Blocking Award and was tabbed a First-Team All-American. Additionally, Nick Jeffreys earned first-team all-conference honors, while Kyle Weaver was named to the all-conference second team and Drew McEntryre earned all-freshman team honors.
In 2015, the Bulldogs rushed for 346.9 yards per game on their way to capturing the SoCon championship and the program’s first playoff win, a 41-38 victory over Coastal Carolina.
Boyd’s first season in the Lowcountry saw the Bulldogs amass 347.2 yards a game on the ground. Sam Frye earned First-Team All-SoCon honors and was named a Walter Camp All-American.
Boyd arrived at The Citadel after spending the previous nine years as the offensive line coach at Lenoir-Rhyne. Boyd also served as the program’s strength and conditioning coach and equipment manager.
In 2013, Boyd led an offensive line that paved the way for a rushing attack that averaged 370.9 yards per game and set the NCAA record for all divisions in rushing yards in a single season with 5,563 on the way to the Division II National Championship Game.
Under the direction of Boyd, a Bear offensive lineman received the Jacobs Blocking Trophy, given annually to the top offensive lineman in the South Atlantic Conference, in each of his final four seasons, including 2013 recipient and Division II All-American Joe Ray.
Prior to his time at Lenoir-Rhyne, Boyd was the offensive line coach at West Virginia Wesleyan from 1998-2004. During his tenure at West Virginia Wesleyan, the Bobcats won a pair of West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WVIAC) championships in 2002 and 2003, and the squad put together a 17-game league winning streak.
Boyd’s offensive lines helped West Virginia Wesleyan set several school rushing records, and five players earned All-WVIAC honors in 2003 including three who received first-team accolades. During its two championship seasons, West Virginia Wesleyan finished 14th and 20th overall in Division II in rushing with 220 and 214 yards per game, respectively.
Boyd began his offensive line coaching career by spending the 1993 and 1994 seasons at West Virginia Wesleyan. He then was the offensive line coach at Cumberland College in 1995 and West Virginia Tech in 1996 and 1997 before returning to West Virginia Wesleyan.
Boyd, a native of Delmont, Pennsylvania, and a 1992 graduate of West Virginia Wesleyan, was a three-year letter winner, two-year starter and team captain his senior year. He is an active member of the American Football Coaches Association and has served on several of the organization’s committees.
He is married to the former Erin Shebatka.
Brian Rucker enters his sixth season coaching the wide receivers at The Citadel.
Normally known more as blockers in the run game, The Citadel features one of the most explosive players in the FCS in Raleigh Webb.
The first-team all-conference selection posted 30 receptions for 617 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2019. He is the first Bulldog to reach double digits in touchdowns since Andre Roberts.
Webb caught at least one touchdown in nine games, and posted three 100-yard performances. Against Samford, Webb hauled in a pair of touchdowns, including an 84-yarder. It is tied for the second-longest reception in school history.
On the other side, Ryan McCarthy added 11 catches for 197 yards and a 53-yard touchdown against Chattanooga.
In 2018, Webb caught three passes over 65 yards, including a school-record 91-yard touchdown against Furman. He also scored on a 59-yard reverse and also returned a kickoff 77 yards for a touchdown.
The group has helped the Bulldogs be among the top rushing teams in the FCS. The Citadel has ranked in the top-10 nationally in each of the past six seasons.
Webb was named to the Southern Conference All-Freshman Team in 2017 after averaging 25.5 yards per catch.
The record-setting 2016 season had a senior-laden group that all set single-game career highs during the season.
Brian Rudder averaged 18.7 yards per reception, while DeAndre Schultz and Jorian Jordan averaged 13.5 and 12.5 yards per reception, respectively.
Prior to joining the Bulldogs’ staff, Rucker spent five seasons coaching the wide receivers at Presbyterian. He also worked with the special teams during his time with the Blue Hose.
In 2014, Rucker helped PC to its first winning season as a Division I program and saw head coach Harold Nicholls named Big South Coach of the Year.
Rucker tutored All-Big South receiver Tobi Antigha who led the conference by averaging 5.8 receptions per game. His 53 catches were the third most in Division I history at the school.
While coaching the special teams, Rucker tutored returners Michal Ruff (2012) and Jeremiah McKie (2013) to all-conference honors.
Rucker spent two years coaching at Lenoir-Rhyne, working with the tights ends in 2008 and the wide receivers in 2009.
He began his coaching career at Western Carolina where he coached Lamont Reid, who signed with the Tennessee Titans, and Darius Fudge, who was just the sixth student-athlete in school history to rush for 1,000 yards in a single season.
In 2004, he was a student assistant in WCU’s academic enhancement program.
A four-year letterwinner at Western Carolina, Rucker finished his collegiate career with 44 receptions for 558 yards.
He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 2004.
One of the veteran members of the coaching staff, John Ward enters his seventh season with the Bulldogs. He is in his third season working with the defensive line, while also serving as the team’s academic coordinator.
The Bulldog defensive line played a big role in The Citadel leading the Southern Conference in rush defense. The unit combined for 35.0 tackles-for-loss and added 15 quarterback hurries.
Joseph Randolph II was the leader of the front as the first-team all-conference selection posted a team-best 14.5 tackles-for-loss and 5.0 sacks.
Dalton Owens controlled the middle of the line as he recorded 8.5 tackles-for-loss and 3.5 sacks in his first action as a Bulldog.
In the classroom, the Bulldogs fought through the pandemic to post a 3.141 team grade-point average during the spring 2020 semester.
The Bulldogs’ defensive front featured a pair of standouts in 2018 in Ken Allen and all-conference selection Randolph.
Randolph earned all-conference honors while ranking fourth in the league with 14.0 tackles-for-loss. Allen did not have the stats, but was a big key in stopping the run from his nose tackle position.
They were part of a defensive front that held five opponents under 100 rushing yards, including limiting Charleston Southern to negative-1 yard rushing in the season finale.
In his first season on the defensive side, Ward helped the Bulldogs finish second in the league in rushing defense. The line was anchored by the emergence of all-conference selection Jalon Williams.
Ward spent his first three seasons at The Citadel working with the offensive tackles.
During the 2016 championship season, the offensive line helped lead the way for the nation’s top rushing attack, rushing for over 400 yards in five games.
The line was anchored by All-American tackle Isaiah Pinson and all-conference tackle Nick Jeffreys.
Success also came in the classroom as the Bulldogs had multiple Google Cloud Academic All-Americans for the first time in school history. Joe Crochet was a first-team selection for the second-straight year, while Jeffreys was named to the second team. Additionally, Myles Pierce and Will Vanvick earned Academic All-District accolades.
The Bulldogs used the same starting lineup the entire 2015 season in helping the program set school records for all-purpose yards, total offense and rushing yards. The Citadel led the conference with 346.9 rushing yards per game 5.70 yards per rush and 41 rushing touchdowns.
Ward came to The Citadel from Lenoir-Rhyne where he served as a graduate assistant working with the tackles. The offensive line helped pave the way for the Bears to lead the nation in rushing while setting the NCAA single-season rushing record for all divisions with 5,563 yards in advancing to the Division II National Championship Game in 2013.
Two of Lenoir-Rhyne’s offensive tackles were named to the All-South Atlantic Conference first team while Joe Ray won the league’s Jacobs Blocking Trophy and was a Division II All-American.
In addition to his coaching responsibilities, Ward also was the strength and conditioning coordinator for the football team.
Ward headed to Lenoir-Rhyne after two seasons as a graduate assistant at Springfield College, working with the tackles and tight ends. He also served as the head coach of the junior varsity team in 2012. The Pride led the country in rushing in 2011 and finished second in 2012.
Ward was a three-year starter at Springfield College where he helped the Pride qualify for the 2006 NCAA playoffs.
He graduated from Springfield in 2010 with a degree in criminal justice.
Kevin Weston enters his fourth season as the outside linebackers coach and Special Teams Coordinator at The Citadel.
In his first season, Weston helped the Bulldogs transition into a new defensive scheme. The new defense was aided by the play of Marquise Blount. The sophomore was off to a tremendous season before it was cut short by injury.
Blount was second on the team with 4.5 sacks and tied for second with 11.5 tackles-for-loss. He played a major role in the victory over Furman by forcing a fumble on a sack to set up a touchdown.
The effort came on the heels of 1.5 sacks against Western Carolina. The two performances helped Blount to be named the Southern Conference Defensive Player of the Month for October.
Freshman Hasan Black came on late during the season to earn a spot on the All-SoCon Freshman team. He finished with 23 tackles, 2.5 tackles-for-loss and four quarterback hurries.
Weston came to the Lowcountry after serving as the defensive coordinator at Kentucky State last season. Prior to that, Weston spent the 2017 season as the defensive coordinator at Westlake High School in Atlanta.
Weston spent two seasons on the defensive staff at Southeastern Louisiana. He worked with the safeties his second season after beginning his tenure as the running backs coach.
Weston went to SLU after serving as the head coach at Clark Atlanta the previous two seasons. During his tenure with the Panthers, Weston mentored 2014 Division II All-American linebacker Bre’nard Williams.
Prior to his first head coaching job, Weston spent eight seasons on the coaching staff at his alma mater, Tusculum University. He worked with the defensive line and linebackers, while also serving two seasons as the defensive coordinator. His 2011 defense finished second in the nation in pass defense.
Weston was the assistant head coach in 2008 when the Pioneers advanced to the Division II playoffs for the first time in program history.
Weston began his coaching career as an assistant coach at Morgan City High School in Madison, Georgia. During his two seasons, the Bulldogs were 19-5 and made two appearances in the state playoffs.
As a player, Weston played tight end and offensive guard for the Pioneers before going on to sign as a free agent in the Arena Football League.
A 2002 graduate of Tusculum, Weston has a bachelor’s degree in education and earned his master’s degree from Troy in 2005.
No stranger to the option attack, Tom Simi enters his first season as an assistant coach at The Citadel. He will work with the offensive tackles and tight ends.
Simi came to The Citadel after spending the previous three years as the associate head coach and offensive line coach at Jacksonville University.
In his three years working with the Dolphins’ offensive line, JU ranked in the Top 5 nationally in rushing yards per game each season.
The 2019 season saw the Dolphins rank fifth nationally in rushing yards per game at 274.6. Three members of the offensive line earned Honorable Mention All-Pioneer League honors.
The Dolphins were even better on the ground during the 2018 season as they ranked third nationally at 345.3 yards per contest. Senior Jake Dempsey earned first-team all-conference honors before going on to play in the FCS Bowl.
Simi had an immediate impact in his first year at JU as the Dolphins averaged 269.3 rushing yards per game on the way to a 7-4 record.
Prior to his time with the Dolphins, Simi spent two seasons as the associate head coach and offensive line coach at Lenoir-Rhyne.
The 2014 Bears squad led the nation in rushing offense and set the NCAA Division II record for yards-per-game, averaging 416 per-contest. Posting an 11-0 regular season record, the team finished ranked No. 8 in the year’s final Division II poll.
The line ranked second in the nation in fewest sacks allowed and saw two players make at least one All-American team, with offensive lineman Joe Ray winning the Jacobs Blocking Trophy as the conference’s best blocker and finishing as a finalist for the Gene Upshaw Award, which signifies the top lineman in all of Division II.
For the second straight year, the Bears led the nation in rushing offense and ranked second in fewest sacks allowed in 2015. Additionally, Ray was given the Jacobs Trophy , and was a finalist for the Gene Upshaw Award once again.
Simi spent the 2013 football season coaching the centers and guards at Army West Point, overseeing a ground attack that ranked third in the Football Bowl Subdivision in rushing offense. His tenure with the United States Military Academy began in 2009, when he served as the Head Coach of the USMA Prep School from 2009-12, helping to develop numerous future Army West Point players. The team posted a 23-13 record in his four seasons at the helm, including a 21-6 mark the final three years.
Simi’s head coaching career began at Feather River Junior College in Quincy, Calif. In 2008, when he took over the team and served as the offensive line coach after overseeing the OL the previous four seasons (2004-07). The Golden Eagles made four bowl game appearances in five seasons, including the year he was the head coach, and ranked in the top five in rushing offesnse all five seasons and led the state twice, out of California’s 72 JUCO programs.
Under Simi’s watch, three offensive lineman garnered all-state honors and 10 made all-conference teams, while nine earned FBS or FCS scholarships.
Simi began his coaching profession at his alma mater, Eastern Oregon University, from 1997-2001. The 1998 Mountaineer team posted the institution’s best record since 1981, while the 1999 offense set 30 school records, ranking in the top-10 nationally in total and rushing offense.
As a player at EOU, Simi was a four-year starter, earning all-conference honors twice. He earned a bachelor’s in history from Eastern Oregon while playing on the team.
Simi is married to Kathleen Simi, and has a daughter, Hannah, and a son, Caleb.
Liam Smith is the Defensive Line Coach and in his first year as the Recruiting Coordinator for the Citadel Bulldogs.
Previously, Liam was the Recruiting Coordinator and Defensive Line and Outside Linebackers Coach for Florida Tech in 2018-2020. Liam was with Fordham University in 2017 as Quality Control and Director of Player Personnel. As the director of player personnel at Georgia State in 2016, Smith was responsible for coordinating all aspects of recruiting, including the evaluation of film of potential recruits prior to forwarding to the recruiting coach. He also set up and oversaw official/unofficial visits as well as junior days. Prior to serving as the Panther’s director of player personnel, Smith spent the previous three years as a graduate assistant for the Panthers, working with the defense, a unit that was the most improved defense in the FBS in 2015. He coached the safeties and returners for both the punt and kickoff return. Smith joined the GSU staff in 2013 from Rutgers, where he worked four years as a student assistant for the football program.
A native of Mahwah, N.J., Smith earned his bachelor's degree in history from Rutgers in 2013.
Tra’ves Bush is in his first year as the Cornerbacks coach for the Bulldogs after serving the 2021 season in the Defensive Quality Control role.
Prior to The Citadel, Bush served in the Armed Forces. As a Commissioned Officer in the United States Navy, the former Lieutenant completed two sea service tours and an overseas duty tour. His personal decorations include Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Overseas Service Ribbon and various Unit awards.
Upon graduation from the United States Naval Academy, Bush became a Graduate Assistant at Navy during the 2013 season before reporting to his first Naval Command in January 2014.
Bush, lettered all four years and started at Safety for two during his time as a Navy Midshipmen from 2009-2012, earning First Team All-Independent and All-East honors. He played in the South Carolina College All-Star Game as a senior.
A native of Johnston, South Carolina, Bush earned his bachelor’s degree in Economics from the United States Naval Academy in 2013.
Kate Yeager is in her eighth season on the staff at The Citadel as the Director of Player Personnel for the Bulldog football team.
Kate serves as the assistant to head coach Brent Thompson and works with the coaching staff on game day recruiting visits as well as serving as the staff's liaison to The Citadel Football Association.