Tom Kleinlein has his man, and Georgia Southern has their new head football coach. As we reported earlier, and FootballScoop.com reported first, Colorado State Defensive Coordinator Tyson Summers has been named the 10th head coach (counting Frank Ellwood in 1996) since football was reinstated in 1981.
Summers began his collegiate career as a Graduate Assistant at his alma mater Presbyterian before becoming a GA at Troy. His first official coaching job was as the safeties coach at Georgia during their 2005 SEC Championship season. He then moved to Statesboro for a year as the linebacker coach under Brian Van Gorder. After that tumultuous season, he landed on his feet at UAB, where he coached safeties from 2007-2010. He then moved to UAB for 2011 before moving on to Central Florida as a position coach and then defensive coordinator. His last stop was as the defensive coordinator at Colorado State under first year head coach Mike Bobo.
Summers is a native of Tift County, GA. He has a lot of history in coaching and recruiting in the southeast. His stint at Central Florida included their Fiesta Bowl victory over offensive power house Baylor.
Tyson Summers obviously has a defensive background and understands the southeast and Georgia Southern in particular. The big question for Eagles fans was, as I noted in the previous post, what offense he would choose to run. His quote from the official site's press release should assuage the fears of fans who thought Summers may want to bring a pro-style offense to Statesboro:
"Besides the day I married my wife and the days my children were born, this is right up there as one of the most exciting moments in my life," Summers said. "This is home for my wife, Beth, and I and we're excited to be able to get to Statesboro and carry on the proud traditions of both Georgia Southern University and the Eagle football program. I'm looking forward to building off the offense that is in place and continuing to progress with the defense. I'm just exceptionally excited to be a Georgia Southern Eagle!"
Athletic Director Tom Kleinlein had this to say about the hire:
"The search committee and myself went through a long process and evaluated a number of candidates and we have decided on Tyson Summers, who is a great fit for us here at Georgia Southern," Kleinlein said. "I'm excited about Tyson coming in and leading our program. What we get in Tyson is someone who knows Georgia, someone who was born and raised in Georgia, someone who has recruited Georgia his entire career, and someone who has been a part of a Group of 5 school that has played on New Year's Day, which is the level we're aspiring to get to.
"His dad was a high school coach in the state of Georgia. He played for a number of former great Eagles who were his high school coaches and he played at Presbyterian for coaches who coached at Georgia Southern. We've gotten someone who is excited be here and is excited to carry on the traditions of Georgia Southern University and is excited to build on where we're already at in the FBS and take us to new heights."
So where does the offense go from here? I hold somewhat to my previous statement that if Georgia Southern's offense is effective against Bowling Green in the bowl game that Dell McGee could get the promotion. McGee has spent the last two years under Willie Fritz and Doug Ruse, and spent 2013 on staff at Auburn with Gus Malzahn and Rhett Lashlee.
As staffing decisions are made, you can be sure either Haisten, myself, or the other more than capable folks here at UnderdogDynasty will report on it.
Welcome to Statesboro, Coach Summers. Hail Southern! Now go out there and GATA!