David Brown, who guided Missouri S&T's football team to its best season in more than three decades in 2012, is stepping down from the head coaching post as he has accepted a position on the staff at Fresno State University.
Brown will join the Bulldogs' staff as a defensive secondary coach after spending the last three seasons as the Miners' head coach, leading S&T to a mark of 19-14 in those three years which included a 10-1 record and a No. 24 national ranking in the final American Football Coaches Association poll in the 2012 season. Prior to taking over the S&T program in 2010, Brown was the defensive backs coach at Ohio University for four seasons.
"My family enjoyed our time in Rolla and coaching at Missouri S&T," Brown said. "We appreciated the friendly supportive people around town and campus. I can't say enough about the players that I was able to coach. They are great young men and will definitely be successful in life. They were a great group to work with every morning. We were able to accomplish a lot in a short period of time.
"The guys really know how to work and I know that they will continue to work hard for each other as well as for the next head coach," Brown added. "Missouri S&T is one of the few places that a student athlete can get a great education while playing good football. I appreciate the positive examples that our players showed my sons, which meant a lot to me. "
"David has worked hard in support of our program and we thank him for his efforts. He has done a great deal to move our football program forward and leaves it in great shape for our next head coach," said Missouri S&T director of athletics Mark Mullin. "We wish him and his family the very best in this new phase of their lives. Although I am sorry to see David leave, I am excited about the future of Miner football. "
During the 2012 season, the Miners had one of the top defensive units in both the Great Lakes Valley Conference and NCAA Division II. It led the nation in turnover margin at plus two per game, while finishing second in sacks with a school record 45 and fifth in rushing defense as it allowed only 86.7 yards per game. Three members of that unit – Eddie Rascon (Canutillo, Texas/Canutillo), Freddy Dugard (Queens Village, N.Y./St. Francis Prep) and Jimmy Barnhart (Union, Mo./Union) – all ranked among the top 100 in Division II for sacks.
The overall defensive unit finished 10th nationally with an average of just 293.1 yards allowed per game and 12th in pass efficiency defense. S&T's defense allowed just 18.6 points per game on the year, which was the 17th-best average out of the 158 teams in NCAA Division II.
Missouri S&T led the GLVC in total defense as well as four other defensive categories, while the Miner offense also led the league in scoring with a school record 458 points during the year, as the Miners finished second to NCAA playoff participant Indianapolis in the inaugural season of football in the GLVC.
The 10 wins posted by the Miners last fall tied the most in a season in school history and earned the Miners their first end-of-season national ranking since 1980, when they originally set the win mark in a 10-0 season. S&T was ranked among the top 25 teams in the nation during a season for the first time since 1984.
The Miners finished 14th in NCAA Division II in sacks during the 2011 season with 34 as S&T improved from a 3-8 mark in Brown's first year at the helm to 6-5. Brown was named as the co-recipient of the Great Lakes Football Conference's "Coach of the Year" award following the 2011 campaign.
"I truly appreciate the efforts of the coaching staff, athletic trainers and support staff." Brown said. It takes a team effort to be successful in football. We had a lot of good help from a lot of good people."
A native of Los Angeles, Calif., and a former player at California Polytechnic State University, Brown is joining a Fresno State team that finished with a record of 9-4 and earned a berth in the Sheraton Hawai'I Bowl last season.
Mullin said that the search for Brown's successor will begin immediately.