COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Consistency and stability will describe Tennessee Tech football coach Watson Brown's 2012 staff as fall camp gets ready to unfold for the defending Ohio Valley Conference co-champions. The veteran coach has completed his staff for the 2012 season, announcing two familiar names as assistant coaches and adding one of his former Golden Eagle players as a graduate assistant. Three other returning coaches have new titles or assignments.
The staff's only new addition is graduate assistant Orlandus Kirby while familiar faces Lee Sweeney and Tyler Wolf have moved into assistant coaching roles.
"We're ready to go, and I really like the makeup of this staff," Brown said. "I feel fortunate to have a coaching staff with so much experience. They are not only outstanding, experienced coaches, but they are exceptional men. I believe our players will benefit tremendously from working with this coaching staff. We have a lot of stability in our staff, and it should allow us to have a lot of consistency in our program.
"Orlandus is going to be good for our program," Brown added. "He played here, he understands what we're trying to do with this football program, and he is also an outstanding young man."
Sweeney and Wolf have been named assistant coaches, while Sam Williamson, Steven Brown and Thomas Cox have been given new titles or assignments.
Sweeney moves from a graduate assistant position to assistant
coach, and will coach the teams receivers. He is a 2009 Tech
graduate who set numerous school passing records as quarterback,
before helping Tre Lamb break
most of those marks last season.
After serving last season as the team's Director of Football Operations, Wolf has been named assistant coach. The Cookeville native will be the special teams coordinator and coach the cornerbacks.
Now in his sixth season at Tech, Sam Wiliamson has been elevated to assistant head coach. He coaches the defensive line and is the defensive running game coordinator.
Steven Brown has been named offensive coordinator, and will continue to coach the quarterbacks and runningbacks. He is in his fifth season on the coaching staff, including one as a graduate assistant and four as an assistant coach.
Cox heads into his sixth season on the staff and has added the duties of Director of Football Operations to his role as assistant coach. While coaching the offensive line, Cox is also the running game coordinator.
Billy Taylor returns as associate head coach and is in his fifth year on Brown's staff. Taylor is the team's defensive coordinator and coaches the inside linebackers and also serves as the team's recruiting coordinator.
Two assistant coaches whose roles remain the same are Sidney Powell and Chris Grimes. In his fourth season at Tech, Powell coaches the secondary and is the defensive passing game coordinator. Grimes, in his third year, coaches the strong safeties and nickel backs.
Brandon Barnes also returns in his role as graduate assistant
and will work with the defensive line.
Kirby joins the staff as a graduate assistant and will work with the tight ends and h-backs. A four-year tight end for the Golden Eagles from 2004 through 2007, he has taken a career change and moved from banking to coaching.
Following graduation in 2008, Kirby put his business management degree to work and served for five years in finance and banking. He was bank manager for three years with Wells Fargo Financial, and spent two years as a bank manager for Regions Bank. He made the decision to return to his alma mater to pursue a master's degree in exercise science, physical education and wellness, with a licensure to teach.
As a player. he saw action in eight games as a true freshman in 2004, then took over as the starter in his sophomore season. The team's full-time starter for two seasons, he missed much of his senior season with injuries before returning to the starting spot for the final month in 2007. He notched 20 career catches for 157 yards, and developed into an effective blocker.
In addition to those coaches, the staff has also added Kate Nicewicz as an administrative assistant for academics. Debbie parker returns for her second year as the program's executive aide.
Season tickets are on sale for the Golden Eagles six-game 2012 home schedule. Tickets may be purchased online at TTUsports.com, or by visiting or calling (931-372-3940) the Athletics Ticket Office in Eblen Center.