Jan. 20, 2009
Tulsa, OK – University of Tulsa Head Football Coach Todd Graham announced today the appointment of Clemson assistant coach Ron West as co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach for the Hurricane.
West brings 29 years of collegiate coaching experience to Tulsa. He has had 13 years experience coaching on defense, including seven seasons as a coordinator, and 16 years on the offensive side of the ball.
He has spent the past 10 seasons on the coaching staff at Clemson University (1999-2008), helping the Tigers win 76 games and play in nine bowl games. This past season, Clemson posted a 7-6 record and played Nebraska in the Gator Bowl.
“We’re excited to have Ron join our coaching staff,” said Graham. “He has great experience and success coaching on the collegiate level. Ron gives us another outstanding coach on the defensive side of the ball, and one who has had success as a coordinator on the Division I-A level (FBS). He is also a very good recruiter. Ron’s work at North Texas, Texas Tech, Baylor, Tulane and Louisiana-Lafayette allowed him to develop high school relationships that will greatly assist us in continuing to recruit the state’s of Texas and Louisiana.”
A 1979 graduate of Clemson, West began his stint on the Tigers’ coaching staff as offensive line coach in 1999. He coached the offensive line for five seasons and spent the past five years on the defensive side of the ball.
While on the defensive coaching staff at Clemson, West has coached the outside linebackers. In 2005, the Clemson defense finished among the top-25 in six defensive categories. In 2006, West coached one of the greatest players in Clemson history, Gaines Adams, who became the No. 4 overall pick in the 2007 NFL draft. The Clemson defense was in the top-25 in all four major categories, including a top-10 finish in scoring defense and total defense.
Clemson’s defense ranked 18th in total defense and 13th in scoring defense this past season.
Before coming to Clemson, West spent two years on Tommy Bowden’s coaching staff at Tulane University (1997-98), where he coached the offensive line. His influence as line coach saw the Green Wave total nearly 4,700 yards and a school record 375 points. A year later, Tulane posted a 12-0 record as the offensive line helped pave the way for an offense to average over 300 passing yards and 200 rushing yards.
West began his coaching career as a graduate assistant coach at Livingston College in 1979. He was at East Carolina in the spring of 1980 and became the offensive line coach at North Texas for the 1980 season. In 1981, West joined the Texas Tech coaching staff as the offensive line coach and special teams coordinator. He served in that capacity for four years before moving to defense in 1985 as assistant linebackers coach.
His next stop was at Louisiana-Lafayette where he spent seven seasons (1986-92) as defensive coordinator and inside linebackers coach. His defenses were ranked among the nation’s top-20 in total defense three times. West joined the Baylor coaching staff for four seasons (1993-96) as offensive line coach and served as the running game coordinator in his final year.
During his playing career, West was a reserve offensive lineman in 1977 and 1978 for the Clemson Tigers after transferring from Marion Institute, where he earned junior college All-America accolades. He started two games as a senior and helped his team post an 11-1 record and No. 6 national ranking in the final Associated Press poll.
West, 51, and his wife, Becky, have two adult children: Brad and Lori.
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