Southern Virginia changes coaches twice
|Jason Walker was a grad assistant at BYU, then offensive coordinator and head coach at Southern Virginia in the course of just a couple of months.|
Jason Walker was first hired as defensive coordinator, then head coach in separate transactions taking place at Southern Virginia a little over a month apart this spring.
Walker follows Tyler Hughes, who was hired in mid-March after having been a quality control coach at Ohio State. Hughes was on staff for a little over a month before he left to take the coaching job at Division II Minot State, the position left open when Todd Hoffner returned to Minnesota State-Mankato.
DeLane Fitzgerald coached Southern Virginia last season as the Knights compiled an 8-2 record. Southern Virginia is joining the New Jersey Athletic Conference in football this fall. Fitzgerald was hired at Frostburg State earlier in the offseason.
Walker comes to Southern Virginia after serving as a defensive graduate assistant the past four seasons under Bronco Mendenhall at Brigham Young.
"We are thrilled to have Coach Walker leading our football program," said Southern Virginia president Paul Sybrowsky. "During his time here, Jason has proven himself a great defensive mind and an exceptional leader. He is committed to the university and our goal to build an elite NCAA Division III football program dedicated to high academic standards and our LDS values."
Prior to BYU, Walker served as the defensive coordinator and special teams coach at Sky View High School in Smithfield, Utah, and had previous experience coaching the defensive secondary and special teams at Ben Lomond High School in Ogden, Utah.
"Coach Walker has displayed excellent leadership skills both prior to being hired as our defensive coordinator and over this past month during spring camp," said Southern Virginia athletic director Jason Lamb. "He has a winning attitude that his team will feed on. Coach Walker has tremendous potential to do great things with the program and we're excited to see what the team can accomplish under his leadership."
Before his coaching career began, Walker played collegiate football for two seasons at Snow College followed by two seasons at Utah State. He received a bachelor's degree in business from Utah State and is currently pursuing a master's degree in public administration from BYU.
"I am thrilled to have this opportunity and am ready to make the most of it," Walker said. "I want to thank president Sybrowsky, vice president Brett Garcia, director of athletics Jason Lamb and the university administration for trusting me with this tremendous responsibility. I also want to thank Bronco Mendenhall and the football staff at BYU for the opportunities for growth they offered me in this profession. I'm grateful for my family and the support they have always provided.
"During the course of spring camp the past few weeks I have seen how hard the boys work and I am excited to be their leader," Walker continued. "Becoming a head coach has always been a dream of mine and I feel prepared to help these young men be successful on and off the field."