Veteran defensive coach turned in one of his finest performances to date in 2013. Rapidly developed a corps of young linebackers after senior captain Corey Nelson was lost to a season-ending injury early in the year.
Dominique Alexander was named the Big 12 Defensive Freshman of the Year and earned Freshman All-America honors, while sophomores Eric Striker and Frank Shannon also received postseason accolades from the Big 12 coaches for their exemplary play.
Shannon led the Sooners with 92 tackles in 2013, while Alexander (80 tackles) ranked second. Striker tied a Sugar Bowl record with 3.0 sacks, while adding seven tackles and a forced fumble in that game.
Named interim head coach of the University of Arizona football team on October 10, 2011. He had served as defensive coordinator since December 2010 and was co-defensive coordinator during the 2010 season. He also served as Arizona’s assistant head coach.
Developed three new starters in 2010 with JUCO transfer Paul Vassallo earning honorable mention All-Pac-10 honors, becoming the first Wildcat since Lance Briggs to post more than 100 tackles.
Mentored Xavier Kelley into a All-Pac-10 Second Team pick in 2009, while Vuna Tuihalamaka into an honorable mention selection as the Wildcats ranked second in the Pac-10 in total defense.
Under his guidance, Ronnie Palmer was a four-year, 41-game starter and 2008 honorable mention All-Pac-10 pick as a senior after earning Freshman All-America accolades in 2005.
In the 2008 Las Vegas Bowl, Arizona linebackers combined 30 tackles from three positions. The Wildcats’ starting linebackers recorded 20+ tackles in 12 games in 2007-08.
Spencer Larsen led the conference with 131 tackles to earn All-Pac-10 First Team honors in 2007. The versatile Larsen has gone on to play both linebacker and fullback in the NFL ranks with Denver, New England and Tampa Bay.
Part of an Illinois staff that took a team with an 0-11 record in 1997 and improved the squad’s mark to 8-4 by 1999. His Illini unit that year recovered 13 fumbles, had 30 sacks and intercepted 14 passes, plus knocked off No. 9 Michigan in Ann Arbor and posted another big road victory at No. 22 Ohio State. The Illini beat Virginia in the Micronpc.com Bowl and finished the season ranked No. 24.
During his time at Army, he helped the Cadets make three bowl appearances, including a 31-29 victory over Illinois in the 1985 Peach Bowl. That season Army posted a 9-3 record and held eight of 12 opponents to 17 points or less. Kish also guided an Army defense that held the opposition to 17 points or less 42 times during his tenure at West Point.
Corey Nelson (Oklahoma), Broncos
Dominique Alexander (Oklahoma)
Big 12 Freshman Defensive Player of the Year
Eric Striker (Oklahoma)
All-Big 12 Second Team
Frank Shannon (Oklahoma)
All-Big 12 Honorable Mention
Spencer Larsen (Arizona)
Ronnie Palmer (Arizona)
Ricky Elmore (Arizona)
Danny Clark (Illinois)
Pat Fitzgerald (Northwestern)
ACCOMPLISHMENTS AS A PLAYER
Four-year letterman as a defensive back at Otterbein College.
Also played collegiate basketball.