By JOEL COLEMAN
Mississippi State’s defensive coaching staff gained a wealth of experience on Thursday when head coach Dan Mullen announced he had added veteran coach Ron English to guide MSU’s safeties.
English, who has 20 years of coaching experience at the FBS level, replaces Maurice Linguist, who left the Bulldogs to join the coaching staff at Minnesota last month.
“I am grateful for this opportunity to join Coach Mullen’s staff and be a part of the MSU family,” English said in a school release. “Bowl games have become the norm in Starkville, and the opportunity to coach in the Southeastern Conference with Dan and (MSU defensive coordinator) Todd Grantham is exciting. I look forward to helping our players develop and teaching the game I love.”
English’s coaching experience includes a pair of stints as a defensive coordinator with stops at Michigan, Louisville and, last year, at San Jose State. English also spent five years as Eastern Michigan’s head coach from 2009-2013.
English’s tenure at Eastern Michigan ended unceremoniously when he was fired for using inappropriate language during a film session with players. He later apologized in an interview with the Associated Press and he told the Detroit News in 2014 that he had learned from his mistake by getting his priorities in order.
After two seasons away from coaching, English joined San Jose State as defensive coordinator prior to last season and now, brings his experience to MSU.
“We are fortunate to hire someone of Ron’s caliber as safeties coach,” Mullen said. “To bring someone to our staff who has served as an FBS head coach and been a successful defensive coordinator is a tremendous asset for our program. His knowledge of the game, especially in the secondary, will complement our staff. We are excited to welcome Ron and his family to Starkville.”
English is the second veteran to join MSU’s coaching staff in the last month. The Bulldogs hired Grantham as defensive coordinator in January. Grantham has more than 25 years of combined experience in both the National Football League and college football.
The duo will try and help turn around a Mississippi State defense that allowed 31.8 points and 281.5 passing yards per game last season.