Joey Jones Football Camps
Director of Operations
Brendt Bedsole is in his fifth season serving as South Alabama’s director of football operations, and in the offseason he added the duties of recruiting coordinator to his responsibilities for the program.
In his role, Bedsole assists with many of the program’s day-to-day activities including coordinating the budget, all aspects of travel and serving as USA’s professional scout liaison. He also has responsibilities assisting with the scheduling of preseason camp and practices, clinics and community relations projects.
Last fall, as an assistant coach, Bedsole guided USA’s outside linebackers. Under his direction, Clifton Crews collected a career-high 49 total tackles — a total that included five behind the line of scrimmage, and two sacks — while Maleki Harris added 20 to go along with a pair of forced fumbles. Bedsole was part of a defensive staff whose unit ended the year ranked second in the Sun Belt Conference in total yards allowed per game.
Bedsole came to the program after working the previous two years at Hoover (Ala.) High School as a teacher and assistant football coach. In 2007, when Bedsole served on the Buccaneer football staff, HHS reached the quarterfinals of the state 6A playoffs.
Prior to his tenure at the high school level, Bedsole spent nine years as an assistant coach at four universities. He was an assistant at Samford during the 2005 and ’06 seasons — the Bulldogs finished .500 in Ohio Valley Conference action his first year on the staff — while working at fellow OVC member Murray State the previous four falls. While at MSU, Bedsole handled a variety of responsibilities, including coaching tight ends, outside linebackers, free safeties, defensive ends, and he was the program’s special teams coordinator. The Racers won 22 games during his tenure, which included advancing to the NCAA Division I-AA playoffs in 2002 after they tied for the league title with a 5-1 mark — MSU tied for second with a 6-2 OVC record in 2004 as well.
Dating back to his undergraduate days, Bedsole also served on Auburn’s staff on three different occasions. He was a student assistant during the 1987 and ’88 campaigns, later working as a graduate assistant in 1997 and again from 1999-00. In those five seasons, the Tigers played in the Sugar Bowl twice, the Florida Citrus Bowl and the Peach Bowl while compiling a 43-16-2 (72.1%) overall record and a 25-11-1 (68.9%) mark in the Southeastern Conference. AU won the league championship twice and added a pair of SEC West Division titles in his time with the program.
Bedsole also worked as an assistant at Trinity (Ala.) High School — serving as head junior varsity coach as well — in 1998.
He received his bachelor’s degree from Auburn in 1989 and his master’s degree from the school in 2000. Bedsole was a walk-on for the Tigers during the 1985 and ’86 seasons, as they were 18-6 during that stretch while playing in both the Cotton and Citrus Bowls.
Bedsole — who was a corporate businessman from 1990-97 — and his wife Beth have a eight-year-old daughter, Sarah Catherine and one son, Wilson, who turned two this year.
Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Backs
After one season as part of the University of South Alabama coaching staff, Travis Pearson was promoted to defensive coordinator prior to the start of spring practice. In his new role, Pearson will work with the Jaguar secondary.
A year ago, he led USA’s inside linebackers while working with a defensive unit that ranked second in the Sun Belt Conference in pass, total and scoring defense. Under his direction, Enrique Williams led the squad with 105 total tackles, ranking fifth in the league and among the top 50 nationally with nearly nine per contest earning honorable mention all-Sun Belt recognition.
Pearson helped Bryson James contribute 34 stops — one shy of equalling his career high — and Desmond LaVelle to chip in with a career-best 27; the latter added two tackles for loss with a sack, as the Jag defense paced the SBC and was among the top 25 in the country in both stops behind the line and sacks.
Pearson was the defensive coordinator at Colquitt County (Ga.) High the two seasons prior to coming to USA, helping the Packers to back-to-back semifinal appearances in the state AAAAA playoffs; the program posted an overall record of 21-7 during that span. In the fall of 2012 CCHS recorded 51 takeaways en route to an 10-4 finish, while in Pearson’s first year on the staff the unit forced 38 turnovers, returning eight of those for scores.
He was the head coach and athletic director at Jefferson Davis High School in Montgomery, Ala., during the 2009 and ’10 campaigns, and also has been a head coach at Elmore County (Ala.) High (2002-04) — where he was selected the Metro 4A Coach of the Year by the Montgomery Advertiser after guiding the Panthers to a 12-1 mark and the quarterfinals of the state playoffs his final year — and Central Hayneville (Ala.) High (1998-99). Pearson helped guide the latter to a berth in the state 4A playoffs his second season at the helm of the program.
He was an assistant at Elmore County H.S. for two years prior to becoming the Panthers’ head coach, and was the defensive coordinator for two seasons at Oxford (Ala.) High, where the Yellow Jackets made back-to-back state playoff appearances; after OHS qualified for postseason action at the 5A level in 2005, the school made the playoffs again the following fall in the 6A classification. Pearson was selected to serve as a defensive coordinator in the 2004 Alabama North/South All-Star Game, and worked at football camps conducted by the staff at Auburn for five years.
Pearson served as director of football operations at Iowa State during the 2007 and ’08 seasons as well.
A 1997 graduate of Alabama State with a degree in physical education, he was a three-year letterwinner for the Hornets. He would go on to play eight seasons in the Arena Football League for three teams, and was selected to the league’s 15th Anniversary Team in 2003.
Pearson and his wife Maria have three children: daughter Marissa (13), and sons Travis II (11) and Trevor (9).
Robert Matthews has seven years of collegiate coaching experience at the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision level as he enters his second season as South Alabama’s offensive coordinator. In addition to those duties, he will once again work with the Jaguar offensive line.
Under his direction, the Jag offense set school records during the 2012 campaign in completions (244), passing yards (2,728), yards per game through the air (209.8) and first downs (252). Ross Metheny set a new school season mark with 189 completions while becoming the first USA quarterback to surpass 2,000 yards passing — he would finish with 2,148 while ranking in the top 10 in both passing and total offense yards per outing. Three Jaguar wide receivers would finish among the top five on the program’s season record list for both catches and receiving yards as well, highlighted by the performance of Jeremé Jones, who finished with 45 receptions for 513 yards and a school-record seven touchdown catches.
And, in the classroom, starting center Trey Clark became the first USA football player to earn Academic All-America accolades.
Prior to joining the USA staff, Matthews was part of the Southern Mississippi staff for two seasons, serving as tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator in 2011 while helping the Golden Eagles to a 12-2 finish and the 2011 Conference USA championship. USM defeated then sixth-ranked Houston 49-28 in the C-USA title game, then earned a 24-17 victory over Nevada in the Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl; the Golden Eagles would also beat Western Athletic Conference champion Louisiana Tech and bowl participant Virginia while ranking in the top 20 nationally in both scoring (15th, 36.86 points per game) and total (16th, 461.36 ypg) offense.
USM averaged better than 200 yards per outing both rushing and passing in 2011, which included collecting a league-best 205.14 yards per contest on the ground. It was the second straight season that the Golden Eagles recorded better than 200 yards per game rushing and passing; in Matthews’ first year on the staff — he served as a staff assistant working with the offensive line — USM posted a then school-record 5,894 total yards while accomplishing the feat. The Golden Eagles would participate in the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl and end the campaign with eight victories.
Matthews served in various roles the previous four seasons at Oklahoma State, where he was part of a staff that guided the Cowboys to four bowls games during that span. As the program’s quarterbacks coach in 2009, Matthews helped OSU to a 9-4 record — which included a 6-2 mark in the Big XII Conference — and a berth in the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic. He was the Cowboys’ director of recruiting in both 2007 and ’08, and served as OSU’s coordinator of football operations in his first year with the program; while in the former role, Matthews’ responsibilities included directing the school’s walk-on program as well as other internal operations.
During his tenure on the Cowboy staff Matthews worked with a pair of future National Football League quarterbacks, Zac Robinson and Brandon Weeden, with the latter chosen in the first round of the 2012 draft by the Cleveland Browns.
He earned his bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Georgia, adding a master’s degree from the school in science education. Matthews played three seasons for the Bulldogs, and in addition to being part of Outback and Peach Bowl champion squads he was named to the Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll on three occasions.
Before moving to the collegiate level, Matthews was tight ends coach and special teams coordinator at Oconee (Ga.) High in 1999, Camden County (Ga.) High’s wide receivers coach and special teams coordinator the following fall and offensive coordinator at North Gwinnett (Ga.) High for two seasons from 2001-02. He also served three seasons as head coach at Shiloh (Ga.) High, where in addition to guiding the program to postseason berths in the state’s highest classification he played a key role in a facility upgrade for the school that included a new strength center, locker room and coaches’ offices.
His wife, the former Laura Henderson, was a member of the Canadian national golf team for over 10 years, going on to play collegiately at Georgia prior to coaching the women’s golf team at both UGA and Oklahoma State. The couple’s first child, Lilly, turned one in April.
Defensive Ends/Outside Linebackers
Freddie Roach is in his second season at University of South Alabama working with defensive ends and outside linebackers.
In his first year with the program, Roach helped a pair of seniors earn first-team all-Sun Belt Conference honors and another who would join them ranked among the top five in the conference in multiple categories. Romelle Jones and Alex Page were both recognized after tying for second in the league with 7½ sacks, a figure that was among the top 50 in the nation. The duo were second and third in the conference with 14 and 13½ stops behind the line of scrimmage, respectively, and Pat Moore — the SBC Defensive Player of the Week the final week of the season — matched Jones in the category while adding 5½ sacks.
With the work of that trio, Roach helped the Jaguars end the year third nationally in sacks per game and 21st in tackles for loss per contest while finishing second in the Sun Belt in pass, total and scoring defense.
Roach came to USA from Murray State, where he was the Racers’ defensive line coach while assisting with the strength and conditioning program during the 2012 season. The previous fall, he coached the defensive line and was the director of strength and conditioning at East Mississippi C.C., helping lead the Lions to a 12-0 record and the National Junior College Athletic Association national championship. For their efforts, EMCC was selected the national coaching staff of the year.
Roach spent three seasons as an assistant strength and conditioning coach at Alabama, during which time the Crimson Tide won both the BCS national championship and Southeastern Conference title in 2009. Following the ’09 campaign, he was part of a staff that was selected the National Strength Staff of the Year.
He has also served as a volunteer assistant coach at Brooks (Ala.) High during the 2006 campaign, where he coached linebackers, cornerbacks and wide receivers.
As a player, Roach was a four-year letterwinner for the Crimson Tide from 2002-05, during which time he was named the national Freshman of the Year, a Freshman All-American, and was twice selected second-team all-SEC. He would go on to be selected to Alabama’s All-Decade Team for the 2000s while helping the program to three bowl appearances, also signing as a free agent with the New England Patriots in 2006. Roach graduated from the school with a degree in human environmental sciences in 2008.
Tim Bowens enters his first season as wide receivers coach at the University of South Alabama, although he has extensive experience at the NCAA Division I level in the state.
Bowens joins the Jaguar program after spending the last two seasons as wide receivers coach at Samford, where his efforts helped the 2013 Bulldog squad become the school’s first to earn a berth in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoffs since 1992.
SU led the Southern Conference last fall in both passing (292.8 ypg) and total (415.6 ypg) offense as three of Bowens’ wideouts were among the top six in receiving yards per game. Under his direction, Kelsey Pope caught 68 passes for 789 yards to earn first-team all-league honors from both the league’s coaches and media panel — he would end the year the school’s career record holder with 250 receptions — while Karel Hamilton was voted first-team Freshman All-American and to the conference’s All-Freshman Team after adding 38 catches for 657 yards and a team-high seven touchdowns.
The effort helped the Bulldogs claim a share of their first SoCon championship since joining the league in 2008 and record a top-20 finish in both The Sports Network and coaches’ polls, going 8-5 overall and 6-2 in conference action.
In his first season at Samford, Bowens helped Pope earn all-conference accolades after ending up in the top five in the league in receptions and receiving yards per game.
Bowens also coached wide receivers at UAB for five years, where he helped Frantrell Forrest reach second on the Blazers’ all-time receptions list. Prior to that, he was wide receivers coach at Alabama in 2006; that was the last of a four-year stretch on the Crimson Tide staff during which time he also was in roles as assistant director of operations and director of high school/NFL relations. While with the ‘Bama program, more than 30 Crimson Tide players were picked up by NFL squads and 25 were chosen to play in postseason All-Star games.
He was a wide receiver at Alabama from 1996-99 — making the Academic All-Southeastern Conference Team his senior year — helping the Crimson Tide to three bowl games and a pair of appearances in the SEC Championship contest. During that time ‘Bama had a pair of 10-win seasons and twice won the league’s West Division title, going on to play in the Orange Bowl Bowens’ senior year after defeating Florida in the SEC title game.
After the conclusion of his playing career, Bowens served as a student assistant on the Tide staff in the spring of 2000. The next two years he was the offensive coordinator at Coffee (Ala.) High School before moving on to be head coach at Tanner (Ala.) High; the Decatur Daily named him the Limestone County Coach of the Year in 2002.
Bowens — who earned his degree from Alabama in 2000 — and his wife, Kesha, have three sons; Timothy, Taylor and Tanner.
Recruiting Coordinator/Defensive Line Coach
Brian Turner enters his seventh season as a member of the South Alabama football staff, working with defensive tackles while also serving as the program’s recruiting coordinator.
Last fall, Turner helped the Jaguar defense rank among the leaders in the Sun Belt Conference after allowing less than 385 total yards and just over 25 points per outing — USA was second in both categories — while topping the league with more than three sacks and seven tackles for loss per contest. His efforts helped Montavious Williams rank in the top 10 in the SBC in sacks after posting a career-high four among his total stops, while Jesse Kelley recorded career-best figures with 34 stops and 6½ tackles behind the line of scrimmage. Jerome McClain also finished with 34 total tackles — including 4½ stops for loss and three sacks — in his first season as a Jag behind Turner’s efforts.
Prior to spring practice a year ago he worked with the entire defensive line, and in that role he helped Alex Page earn second-team all-Sun Belt honors following the 2012 campaign. Page was honored after posting career highs with 64 total tackles, 11½ stops for loss and six sacks — he ranked among the top 10 in the league in the latter two categories — while as a group Turner’s unit contributed 18 of the team’s 24 sacks a year ago. Pat Moore also finished among the top 15 in the league in tackles for loss (nine) and sacks (4½), while five linemen ended the season with at least 20 stops.
The group played a key role in helping the Jags rank second in the Sun Belt in total defense.
Jaguar defensive linemen combined to post 30 of the team’s 67 tackles for loss in 2010 as USA completed a second straight undefeated season, with Romelle Jones pacing the squad with six, Randon Carnathan and Anthony Taylor supplying five each, and Andy Dalgleish and Williams collecting four apiece; Jones and Taylor would lead the group overall with both posting 19 total stops. Turner’s unit also broke up eight passes, recovered four fumbles and blocked two kicks as USA allowed only 81.2 yards rushing, 254.6 total yards and 13 points per contest.
The previous fall, 11 of Turner’s players combined to account for 18 tackles behind the line of scrimmage, helping the Jaguar defense allow under 235 yards and seven points per game while going 7-0 in the school’s inaugural season. Three USA defensive linemen — Taylor, Williams and Jones — paced the group after posting double-figure tackle totals, with Taylor tying for fourth on the squad with four stops for loss.
In 2011, Jones led the Jags for the second consecutive season with seven stops for loss, while Williams added five and Dalgleish four in helping USA surrender less than 150 yards per outing on the ground while ranking 16th in the country at the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision level in total defense at 309.7 yards per contest.
As the program’s recruiting coordinator, Turner’s efforts assisted the Jags in putting together signing classes to help add to the talent level and depth in the program. That has included inking multiple players ranked among the best at their position by Scout, Inc., as well as numerous individuals who have helped their high schools to state championships and deep postseason runs.
Before coming to Mobile, Turner had worked the previous five years on the coaching staff at Sun Belt Conference rival Troy. In addition to serving as recruiting coordinator, he spent his last season as coach of the defensive ends after working with the safeties in 2006. A guard and center for the Trojans in the mid-1990s, Turner previously worked with the offense, focusing primarily on tight ends and wide receivers.
In five years with the program, Troy compiled a 33-27 (55%) mark overall while going 20-8 (71.4%) in Sun Belt action. The Trojans earned invitations to a pair of bowl games — they were an at-large participant in the 2004 Silicon Valley Bowl, and they defeated Rice 41-17 in the 2006 New Orleans Bowl after receiving the bid as SBC champion — while winning league titles in each of his last two years.
During Turner’s playing career, the Trojans posted a 31-6-1 (82.9%) record, including the school’s first perfect regular-season (11-0) in 1995. In 1993, Troy advanced to the semifinals of the NCAA Division I-AA playoffs with victories over Stephen F. Austin and McNeese State, while the 1994 and 1995 squads qualified for postseason play as well.
A native of Fort Meade, Fla., Turner began his coaching career as the tight ends coach at Dothan (Ala.) High in 1996. After three seasons on the Tiger staff, he served as a graduate assistant at Troy from 1999-01. The Trojans recorded a winning record all three seasons, posting a 28-8 (77.8%) mark in that span including a 13-1 (92.9%) record in Southland Football League action. Troy won the conference championship in both 1999 and ’00 before moving up to the NCAA Division I-A level his final year; the Trojans advanced to the quarterfinals of the playoffs his first season as a graduate assistant while participating in postseason play the following fall as well.
His first full-time appointment at the collegiate level came in 2002, when he spent a year as offensive line coach at North Alabama before returning to Troy.
Turner joined his brother John on the USA football staff, making South Alabama one of the few programs at the NCAA Division I-A (Football Bowl Subdivision) level with brothers patrolling the same sideline. Their father, Blaine, played football at University of Tampa and later coached at the high-school level for 30 years.
Turner completed his bachelor’s degree in social science in 2000. He is married to the former Kristi Jernigan, an All-American basketball player at West Florida who was inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame; the couple has one daughter, Bryce (6).
With experience playing in the Atlantic Coast Conference and as a coordinator at a pair of NCAA levels, Robby Brown was added to the University of South Alabama football staff as running backs coach and run game coordinator in February.
Last fall Brown was offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Northwestern (La.) State, where he guided a Demon offense that averaged nearly 400 total yards per contest including over 230 per outing through the air. NSU led the Southland Conference and ranked among the top 10 at the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision in both fumbles and turnovers lost, while his efforts helped quarterback Zach Adkins rank in the top 30 in the country in passing yards per game, passing touchdowns and completion percentage en route to being named the league’s Newcomer of the Year.
The Demons recorded 226 yards and three scores passing in a victory over nationally-ranked Central Arkansas, while also posting 490 yards of total offense against eventual conference champion and No. 4 seed in the FCS playoff bracket, Southeastern Louisiana.
The previous fall, Brown was offensive coordinator at Valdosta (Ga.) State, where his unit averaged 469 yards and 40 points per game on the way to claiming the NCAA Division II national championship. In addition to ranking ninth in the country in scoring and 13th in total offense, his efforts helped the Blazers pace the Gulf South Conference in every major statistical category; VSU had both the league’s Offensive Player and Freshman of the Year, with nine individuals earning all-conference honors and five named to the all-region team.
He joined the Blazer staff in 2009, helping Cedric Jones set the GSC all-time receptions record, and just one year later the team was among the top 25 nationally in both passing and total offense. Five individuals would earn All-America recognition on seven occasions his last two years guiding the VSU offense.
Brown has also been the offensive coordinator at Southwest Baptist and Henderson (Ark.) State. At the former, his players set 29 school and six Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association records while Nick Smart broke the all-divisions standard with 143 catches in a season. At the latter, Brown helped the Reddies rank third in the country in passing and 18th in total offense while setting 12 school records; he had an All-American and two all-Gulf South selections in his unit.
He began his coaching career at Troy in 2005, and in his second year on the staff the Trojans won the Sun Belt Conference title before capping the season with a 41-17 win over Rice in the New Orleans Bowl.
Brown played quarterback for two years at Georgia Tech, helping the Yellow Jackets to a pair of winning seasons and postseason bowl victories, earning his degree from the school in history, technology and society in 2004. He received his master’s degree in sports and fitness management from Troy in 2007 as well.
Brown and his wife Rachel have one daughter, Parks.
After helping South Carolina State post a winning record in seven of eight seasons, four conference championships and a quartet of NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoffs berths, Mike Adams came to the University of South Alabama in February and will work with Jaguar inside linebackers.
Adams joined the SCSU staff in 2006 as defensive backs coach and special teams coordinator — he was promoted to defensive coordinator two seasons later — and would help the Bulldogs record a 64-30 (68.1%) overall mark while going 52-12 (81.3%) in Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference action. SCSU won two outright (2008 and ’09) league championships and shared two others (’10 and ’13) during that span, while he helped 13 individuals earn all-MEAC accolades.
And, his efforts aided five former Bulldogs in reaching the National Football League: Phillip Adams, Rafael Bush, Dominique Ellis, Marshall McFadden and Christian Thompson.
Adams led a unit during the 2013 campaign that topped the FCS level in total (238 ypg) and pass efficiency (92.35 rating) defense, also ranking second against the run (90.9 ypg) and pass (147.1 ypg) and third in scoring defense (15.2 ppg). The Bulldogs ended a two-year postseason drought, claiming a share of the MEAC crown while finishing 9-4 on the season including a 7-1 record in the conference.
SCSU was first in the country in pass defense, second in total and pass efficiency defense, and fourth against the run and in scoring defense en route to a 9-3 mark and a playoff appearance in 2010. The previous fall — while going 10-2 with an undefeated league record — Adams guided a unit that ranked in the top 10 nationally in four of those categories; the Bulldogs were 11th in pass defense as well that year. SCSU also won 10 contests and was undefeated in MEAC play in 2008 while allowing just 17 points per outing, a figure that was seventh in the nation.
Adams is a 1998 Ball State graduate — earning a degree in sport administration — where he served as a student assistant during the 1997 season. The next three years he was an assistant at St. Joseph’s (Ind.), where after his first season on staff he made the move from working with wide receivers and running backs to guiding Puma defensive backs.
Prior to joining the SCSU staff, Adams served as defensive backs coach and special teams coordinator at West Georgia.
He is married to the former Natasha Taylor, and the couple have one son, Nataysuan.
John Turner is in his third season working with South Alabama tight ends and his seventh overall as a member of the Jaguar coaching staff.
Wes Saxton was a first-team all-Sun Belt Conference selection a year ago under his guidance after ranking in the top 10 in the league in both catches and receiving yards per game; the junior tied a program record with 50 catches while totalling a career-best 635 yards. He wasn’t the only individual to make an impact at the position under Turner’s direction, however, as Davin Hawkins caught two passes for 45 yards including a 30-yard touchdown reception in a 41-39 victory at Tulane — USA’s first win of the season — and Ryan Onkka scored on his first career catch as the Jags defeated Louisiana-Monroe.
In the classroom, Rush Hendricks was the program’s lone academic all-district selection after earning first-team honors from the College Sports Information Directors of America.
Turner’s efforts helped Jag tight ends become a more significant factor in the USA passing game in 2012 as Saxton (23 catches, 336 yards, 1 TD) and Greg Hollinger (22 catches, 321 yards, 2 TDs) became the first two individuals at the position to record double-digit reception totals in the same season.
In the program’s first-ever season, Turner’s unit played a key role in helping the Jaguars average better than 45 points and nearly 440 yards per outing. The offensive line cleared the way for USA running backs to record an average of more than six yards per carry, while the passing game accounted for over 170 yards per contest as the group surrendered just seven sacks in seven games. Five Jag linemen recorded five knockdown blocks per game or more, including two — Jon Griffin and Chris Brunson — who paced the group with 55 and 53 pancakes, respectively.
In 2010, the offensive line was just as effective as USA averaged more than 41 points and nearly 440 yards per game while winning all 10 outings. The unit helped the Jaguars collect more than 200 yards per game both on the ground and through the air, and it allowed just 12 sacks despite missing the services of a pair of upperclassmen for multiple games. Both Griffin and Trey Clark were credited with better than seven pancake blocks per contest, with six individuals reaching double digits in the category.
The Jaguars averaged better than 325 yards and nearly 25 points per contest last year against an upgraded schedule that featured the first two NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision opponents in school history, while the unit’s pass-blocking efforts helped USA quarterbacks throw for better than 170 yards per contest. Seven lineman were credited with at least 10 knockdown blocks on the season, while off the field Clark became the first member of the program to earn national academic honors after he was named to the Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association Academic All-Star Team.
A native of Fort Meade, Fla., Turner served as offensive line coach at Chattanooga beginning in 2003 and was promoted to assistant head coach following the 2005 season. His line units surrendered less than a sack per game on average over his last three years and he produced a trio of all-Southern Conference selections — tackle Josh Shinpaugh in 2005, guard Justin Matherson in 2006 and center Garrett Windham in ’07.
Turner went to UTC after one season at Western Carolina. He has also had collegiate coaching stops at Clemson as a graduate assistant for Tommy Bowden in 2001 and at Auburn in 1997 and ’98, when he was offensive line and special teams assistant under Terry Bowden. AU won the SEC West and defeated Clemson in the Peach Bowl his first year with the program, while Clemson went 7-5 and defeated Louisiana Tech 49-24 in the Humanitarian Bowl in his lone season with the program. CU spent eight weeks in the national rankings, with the highlight of its season a 47-44 overtime victory at then-No. 9 Georgia Tech.
A 1988 graduate of Jacksonville State with a degree in physical education, Turner was a standout offensive lineman for the Gamecocks in 1986 and 1987. JSU finished 5-4-1 in each of his two seasons as a letterwinner.
He began his coaching career immediately as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, working with a team that reached the NCAA Division II quarterfinals. The Gamecocks ended that season 10-2 overall, and they went 7-1 in Gulf South Conference play to tie for the league championship — JSU would defeat West Chester 63-24 for the school’s first postseason victory in six years.
Turner also has ties to the high school ranks in the state, coaching at Daleville High School (1989-93), Dothan High School (1994-96) and UMS-Wright Prep (1999-00). In just his second season on the staff, Daleville High advanced to the second round of the state 4A playoffs before falling 27-21 in double overtime to the eventual runner-up. After a two-point loss in the second round to the same school the following fall — this time, the opposition would go on to earn the title — his DHS team won the state championship in 1992 and advanced to the state finals in 1993.
Dothan HS advanced to the state 6A playoffs in his final year on the staff as well, while his efforts helped UMS-Wright win a pair of postseason contests to make the quarterfinals of the 4A bracket in each of his two seasons with the school.
Turner has coaching in his heritage as his father, Blaine, is a retired head coach in the Florida high school ranks, while his brother Brian is also on the USA staff.
While at Auburn, Turner earned his master’s degree in physical education in 1998. He and his wife Kim have one son, Walker Wilson (7).
Strength & Conditioning Coach
Justin Schwind, who previously had worked with head coach Joey Jones at Birmingham-Southern, is beginning his sixth season on the South Alabama staff as the program’s head strength and conditioning coach.
In his role, Schwind is responsible for designing and implementing football’s strength and conditioning program, supervising the day-to-day operation of the football weight room and overseeing a staff that includes four full-time assistants as well as graduate and student assistants. He also assisted in the design of the weight room facility that is part of the program’s $10 million field house.
His efforts with the Jaguar football program led to his being named the 2011 NCAA Football Championship Subdivision Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year by Samson Equipment. Schwind was one of nine individuals recognized by the company, which honors recipients each year including strength and conditioning coaches from the National Football League, all college divisions and a pair of high school coaches.
Schwind also works directly with the school’s men’s golf team, and he has a hand in supervising the strength and conditioning programs for each of USA’s 17 sports. His efforts helped the Jaguar golf squad claim the 2010 Sun Belt Conference championship, while last fall he worked with the Jag soccer program as it claimed its first-ever league tournament title and NCAA Tournament berth.
He was at BSC for two years as the school’s head strength and conditioning coach, where he was responsible for working with all 21 programs. In addition to maintaining a schedule for both teams as well as his student assistant staff, Schwind supervised the day-to-day operations of three weight rooms — he was responsible for helping to design one of those as well.
Schwind earned his bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Texas State in 2004, getting his start in the profession as a student assistant for the school as he worked primarily with the Bobcats’ baseball and football teams. After serving as a strength and conditioning intern at Rice, where he also assisted with neuroscience research at Baylor’s College of Medicine on a study involving athletic performance and visualization, he would go on to work as a graduate assistant for two years at Mississippi State. While in Starkville, he designed and maintained strength and conditioning programs for MSU’s track and field, women’s soccer, and men’s and women’s golf teams.
He would earn his master’s degree from Mississippi State in physical education in 2007.
Schwind is certified by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches Association (CSCCA), United States Weightlifting Association (USAW) and the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), and has received his crossfit football certification as well.
He was married to the former Erin Boles on May 18, 2013.
Chase Smith will assume total responsibility for coaching the South Alabama offensive line in his second year as a full-time assistant as he enters his fourth season as part of the Jaguar staff.
Smith assisted with the line during the 2013 campaign, working with a USA offense that averaged more than 250 yards per game passing and 425 overall while scoring nearly 30 points per outing. The Jaguar offensive line allowed less than 1½ sacks per contest contest as well last fall to lead the Sun Belt Conference in the category, and after the season both Chris May (first-team) and Ucambre Williams (second-team) were named to the all-league team.
In 2012, Smith was the program’s director of football operations, while he was a graduate assistant coach helping with the offensive line the previous fall. That season, the Jags — who were in the first of a two-year transition to the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision level — recorded a 6-4 mark against what was then the toughest schedule in program history.
He received his bachelor’s degree in 2005 and master’s degree in ’08, both in physical education, from Jacksonville State, gaining extensive experience coaching at the high school level in Alabama after earning the first. He began as an assistant working with offensive and defensive linemen on the freshman team at Spain Park High in the fall of ’05, moving on to Greenville HS to work with running backs a year later —the Tigers would finish 10-3 while advancing to the quarterfinals of the state 5A playoffs that season.
Smith then joined the staff at Spanish Fort High, where he worked with running backs in 2007, the defensive line from 2008-09 and the offensive line in ’10. During his time on the Toro staff, SFHS put together a 39-13 (75%) mark culminating with the state 5A championship in Smith’s final year with the program. The Toros went 11-2 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the state playoffs in 2008, reached the semifinals of the state playoffs the following fall while putting together an 11-3 record prior to winning the title. Smith served as offensive coordinator that year as well, which SFHS ended with a 13-2 mark.
Director of Player Personnel
Mark Hewes has been a member of the South Alabama football support staff since the 2009 season; after serving as an equipment assistant as both an undergraduate and graduate student, he begins his fourth year as the Jaguars’ director of player personnel.
Hewes’ responsbilities include supervising the academic standing and progress of football student-athletes through daily collaboration with Athletic Academic Services, monitoring the APR of the football program, providing daily assistance in regards to student housing, and managing the walk-on program. In addition, Hewes serves as USA’s liaison for high school relations, assists with camps, and provides community relations.
His efforts helped the program see 22 members earn Sun Belt Conference academic honors following the 2012 season, including two who were named academic all-district by the Collegiate Sports Information Directors of America — Trey Clark would go on to be the first-ever Jag to be voted Academic All-American. Rush Hendricks was a first-team CoSIDA academic all-district selection at tight end last fall, going on to be named the Sun Belt Conference Postgraduate Scholar Athlete of the Year, while 38 individuals posted a 3.0 grade-point average in the spring including 14 who were named to the Dean’s List.
As a student equipment manager and a graduate assistant, Hewes was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the football equipment room. Those duties included the preparation, distribution and maintenance of team apparel and equipment. Hewes provided inventory levels, assisted with the purchase of apparel and equipment, developed annual budgets, and oversaw the student manager’s hours and responsibilities. His efforts helped the Jaguars record back-to-back undefeated seasons, which included a combined 17-0 record.
Prior to coming to USA, Hewes previously served three years as an athletic marketing intern at UAB from 2000-03. In that role, he was responsible for the development and implementation of marketing plans for the men’s and women’s soccer and baseball programs. In addition, he assisted with the planning and coordination of all football and men’s and women’s basketball marketing and advertising plans, game day activities and promotions. Hewes was also responsible for membership initiatives, as well as design and layout of the Junior Blazer Kids’ Club newsletters.
Hewes received his bachelor’s degree from USA in 2010 and is slated to earn his master‘s degree in communication in August. Hewes is a member of the Lambda Pi Eta National Communication Honor Society (2010) and is currently a member of the Athletic Equipment Managers Association (AEMA).
Hewes — who was a corporate account executive from 2003-09 — and his wife Amy have two daughters, Ella Kate (10) and Morgan (6). They reside in Daphne, Ala.
Equipment Operations Manager
Jeff Bailey is in his seventh season as USA’s equipment operations manager. In his role, Bailey is responsible for fitting and ordering all equipment — including practice and game uniforms, helmets, shoulder pads, shoes and cleats — for the football program. He is in charge of maintaining inventory levels and projecting future equipment needs, assists in coordinating the Jaguars’ practice and game day itinerary, and oversees the program’s staff of student managers.
He came to South Alabama after serving as the equipment manager and director of football operations at Prattville High School since August 2003, where he worked for former Jaguar assistant coach Bill Clark. At PHS his responsibilities included ordering, organizing and distributing equipment for more than 200 student-athletes on the varsity, junior varsity and freshman teams, maintaining facilities and grounds, supervising the Lions’ managers and ball boys, organizing travel arrangements and organizing public events for fund raising.
Prior to working at PHS, Bailey served as the recreation coordinator for the City of Prattville Parks and Recreation Department for six years, where he assisted in managing the city’s recreation program. He also served as equipment manager for the Montgomery Biscuits, the Double A Minor League affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays, during the summer of 2005.
A baseball player at Huntingdon (Ala.) College in 1983, Bailey and his wife Jan have five sons; Justin (27), Jarrett (25) — a four-year pitcher for the Jaguar baseball team — Codey Owens (22), and twins Travis and Trevor Owens (17). The couple also have two grandsons, Easton Bailey and Aiden Bailey.
Director of Football Video
Sam Ogden begins his first season as South Alabama’s director of football video.
In the role, Ogden is responsible for coordinating the filming and breakdown of practices and games for coaches’ analysis, directing the production of motivational, promotional, and recruiting highlights, and overseeing the exchange of video with opponents.
A 2014 graduate of Jacksonville State — earning his degree in communications — Ogden worked with the Gamecock football and men’s basketball teams for four years. In handling the day-to-day video duties for both programs, he was part of a staff that helped JSU make two appearances in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoffs (2010, ’13) while winning the Ohio Valley Conference championship in 2011.
Following his final year with the school, Ogden was selected the FCS Video Coordinator of the Year by the Collegiate Sports Video Association.
Ogden has also helped capture video of community services events including Isaiah 58, an organization that buys and packs meals for over 100,000 people in Honduras on a quarterly basis. He has also had motivational and recruiting videos highlighted as the video of the day on several web sites.
A native of Bellefontaine, Ohio, Ogden has been a member of the CSVA since 2012