Offensive coordinator David Marsh takes over the Texas Southern offense for the 2019 season. He arrives at TSU following two successful seasons at Campbell University which included several all-conference players and two freshman All-Americans that were both named Jerry Rice Award finalists as National Freshman of the Year.
In his second season as Campbell’s offensive coordinator, the university transitioned into the Big South Conference as a scholarship program. Although the numbers would be down from 2017, the 2018 squad started string before injuries took hold in the second half of the season.
The offense would be led by two Big South First Team All-Conference wide receivers Caleb Snead and Aaron Blockmon. Snead would go on to be named Freshman All-America and was a finalist for the Jerry Rice Award. Quarterback Daniel Smith also earned All-Big South Second Team honors.
Smith would also become the school’s career leader in total offense by posting 5,411 total yards. A true dual threat quarterback, Smith would also become the career leader in rushing touchdowns (25) and touchdowns responsible for with 56. Other rushing career records Smith broke included yards per rush and yards per game. Smith would not just break the rushing records but also the career passing records: yards, touchdowns, attempts, completions and yards per completion. He also set the total offense per game record with 270.5 yards per game.
Marsh led Campbell’s offense to a banner year in 2017, guiding the Camels to becoming the Pioneer Football League’s top offensive unit, averaging 436.5 yards per game, a school record. CU was also one of two squads in the PFL to average more than 33 points per game, adding the league’s second highest rushing yards per game total at 228.7 yards per game.
Campbell also set a school record for passing touchdowns (21) and passing yards per game (207.8), while hitting the 50 touchdown mark for the second time in the program’s 10 seasons.
Smith was named First Team Freshman All-America by Phil Steele, finishing the 2017 regular season with the fourth-most rushing yards in the country, with his 1,272 yards on the ground leading all FCS freshmen and quarterbacks. Smith also led the nation in rush yards per carry (9.13), while standing second in rushing yards per game, fifth in points responsible for per game, ninth in total offense, 11th in points responsible for, 11th in rushing touchdowns, 17th in all-purpose yards, 18th in total touchdowns, 20th in passing yards per completion and 24th in scoring.
Smith set Campbell single-season records for rushing yards, total offense (3,161), all-purpose yards (1,272) and touchdowns responsible for (30). After just one season, Smith was already Campbell's career leader in touchdown passes with 18. The Leesburg, Va. native rushed for 12 touchdowns on the season, adding 1,889 yards passing.
In addition to being named the PFL’s Offensive Freshman of the Year and Second Team All-PFL, Smith was a finalist for the STATS Jerry Rice Award for FCS freshman player of the year, finishing fourth in the final voting, and was also named to the STATS Walter Payton Award watch list, as well as the College Football Performance Awards' (CFPA) 2017 midseason watch list for the FCS National Performer of the Year Trophy.
Marsh came to Campbell after spending the 2016 season as an assistant at Texas A&M under head coach Kevin Sumlin and offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone.
The Aggies ranked second in the SEC in total yards (6,071) and third in points per game (34.9), while wide receiver Josh Reynolds led the SEC In receiving yards (1,039). Texas A&M went 8-5 overall, falling to Kansas State 33-28 in the Texas Bowl.
Prior to his time in College Station, Marsh was a member of Mazzone’s offensive staff at UCLA, coaching inside receivers with the Bruins from 2013-16, also coaching the offensive line in the spring of 2015. With Marsh’s help, UCLA ranked 23rd nationally in total offense in 2014 (467.8), also standing 34th in rushing yards (209.5), paced by the PAC-12’s leading rusher, Paul Perkins.
With UCLA, Marsh coached NFL Draft picks Thomas Duarte (Miami Dolphins) and Shaq Evans (New York Jets), as well as free agent signee Devin Fuller (Atlanta Falcons), guiding Bruins to all-conference honors five times.
Marsh spent the 2011 and 2012 seasons at Saguaro High School in Scottsdale, Ariz., serving as passing game coordinator while coaching quarterbacks and wide receivers in 2011, then taking offensive coordinator duties in 2012. The Sabercats won the 2011 Arizona State Championship, and ranked No. 1 in the state in total offense in 2012 (521.3). He coached 2015 Texas A&M Freshman All-American Christian Kirk to two MaxPreps All-American seasons, as well as 2011 Arizona Player of the Year D.J. Foster, who went on to play collegiately at Arizona State, signing with the New England Patriots as a priority free agent in 2016.
Marsh began his coaching career at Mesquite High School in Gilbert, Ariz. under head coach Mike Reardon in 2008, where he spent three seasons. With the help of Marsh, Mesquite hosted the school’s first playoff game in 2009, again hosting in 2010. He coached the state’s leading rusher in 2010, future University of Arizona running back Anthony Lopez, as well as future Northern Arizona University tight end R.J. Rickert, who was an all-state selection and region player of the year in 2010.
Marsh was a member of the United States Marine Corps from 2003-08, serving as a member of the Cherry Point Base Ruby Team in 2006-07, and deploying to Iraq in 2008 as a squad leader.
Veteran coach Manny Martinez returns to Texas Southern for his third stint as the team’s offensive line coach.
Martinez holds the distinction of being the last offensive line coach at TSU since the mid-1990s to pave the way for a pair of 1,000-yard rushers on two separate occasions. During his first stint at TSU in 2005, running back Brent Wilson rushed for 1,032 yards and 10 touchdowns while Marcus Wright rushed for 1,200 yards in 2010.
A former student-athlete at McMurry University, Martinez began his coaching career at the University of Houston where he served as a student assistant before moving on to Texas A&M as a graduate assistant offensive line coach. In 2001, Martinez received his first break on the collegiate level as the offensive line coach at Dodge City Community College before returning to Texas as the offensive line coach at Blinn College. In his final season at Blinn, Martinez’s line allowed running back Derrick Ross to run for 1,629 yards and 22 touchdowns.
He moved to TSU in 2004 and spent four seasons as the team’s offensive line coach. In 2005, Wilson surpassed the 1,000-yard mark as it marked the first time since 1998 a Tiger running back has rushed over 1,000 yards. He returned to the high school ranks in 2008 as the offensive line coach at Alvin (Texas) High School before returning to TSU in 2010 for his second stint as the team’s offensive line coach. In his first season back at TSU in 2010, Martinez’s line produced a 1,000-yard rusher for the first time since his first tour at TSU in addition to a pair of All-SWAC performers in Charles Smith and Skyler Trimble. In 2011, TSU fielded the No. 2 ranked rushing offense in the SWAC (164.5 ypg) and ranked third in sacks allowed.
Martinez moved to the nation’s capital and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference in 2013 as the offensive line coach at Howard University. In 2013, HU led the MEAC in total offense and ranked No. 2 in rush offense with 200 yards per contest. The offensive line also led the conference in sacks against as they only allowed 13 sacks. Martinez had the opportunity to coach multiple All-MEAC performers during his tenure from 2013-15 at Howard. In quarterback Greg McGhee’s final two seasons behind the offensive line’s protection, he passed for nearly 5,000 yards and compiled 6,000-plus yards of total offense. Running back Anthony Philyaw also dazzled as a true freshman in 2013 with 721 yards and 15 rushing touchdowns.
In 2016, Martinez returned to Houston and served as the offensive line coach at Stake Jesuit College Prep. Playing in the state of Texas’ top football classification with one of the smallest enrollments, Martinez helped lead the Crusaders to back-to-back playoff appearances in 2017 and 2018. His offensive line paved the way for University of Arizona signee Michael Wiley as Wiley rushed for 2,632 rushing yards on 340 carries with 29 touchdowns over his junior and senior seasons.
In an effort to hone his craft and stay abreast of current trends, Martinez has participated in NFL Minority internships with the Detroit Lions (2001), Houston Texans (2006), Seattle Seahawks (2007) and Minnesota Vikings (2010). He is married to Michelle and they have a son, Matthew, and daughter, Emma Rose.
Wilson comes to Texas Southern after spending the past six years as head coach and the past three years as Athletic Director at Woodlawn High School in Shreveport, La. Wilson had a successful tenure as he led his team to the Class 4A playoffs in all six seasons as head coach. He also led Woodlawn to the 2017 Quarterfinals, which was the school’s first trip since 1979. He also led the Knights to a 10-win season in 2016 and its first undefeated district championship since 1990.
Wilson was named the 2016 Shreveport Times All-City Coach of the Year, 2016 District 1-4A Coach of the Year, 2016 Football Frenzy Chevyland Coach of the Year and 2018 Shreveport Times Sports Awards Richard Lary Coach of the Year. He was influential in the signing of over 40 student-athletes to college scholarships during tenure, including 11 in February of 2018.
Prior to becoming head coach at Woodlawn in 2013 at 26-years old, he spent four seasons as the Woodlawn’s offensive coordinator (2009-2012) and four seasons as offensive coordinator at his alma mater, Arcadia High School (2005-2008). Under his watch at Arcadia, the team advanced past the Bi-district round and the Regional Playoffs in 2007 and 2008. His offense averaged more than 35 points per game.
The Arcadia, La. native attended the 2012 U.S. Army All-American Bowl Coaches Academy and has served as a coach in nearly 20 FBS summer camps. He is a member of the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), Louisiana High School Athletic Directors Association (LHSADA), Louisiana High School Coaches Association (LHSCA) and Louisiana Football Coaches Association (LFCA).
Wilson received a Bachelor of Science in Business Management in 2008 and a Master of Arts in Teaching in 2010 both from Louisiana Tech University. Wilson also received a Master of Science in Criminal Justice from Grambling State University in 2013. Wilson has two daughters, Zerenity and Zaniyah.
Michael Allen, II joins the TSU staff for his first season as the linebackers coach in 2019.
Allen comes to TSU after serving as the associate head coach and defensive coordinator at Silsbee High School in East Texas during the 2016-18 seasons. At Silsbee, Allen led the Tigers to their longest playoff run since 1977 as the team advanced to the Class 4A Division II state semifinals in 2018. In 2017, the team went three rounds deep after only one round the season before. The Tigers were a regular stop for college recruiters as four defensive players signed to continue their football careers in 2018.
Prior to joining the staff at Silsbee, Allen coached the wide receivers and special teams at Cypress Ranch High School in Cypress, Texas for two years (2014-15). In his first season at Cy Ranch, Allen helped make history as the team advanced to the Class 6A Division I State Championship game as it marked the school’s first title game appearance in only its fifth year of varsity football. In his second year, the Mustangs rolled through their district with an undefeated record before closing out his tenure with an 11-1 mark in 2016.
Allen got his start on the high school level at Livingston High School as the co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach in 2013. Before his stint at Livingston, he served two years as the defensive and special teams assistant for the NFL Players Association Collegiate Bowl on the staff of former NFL and Super Bowl XXXIV winning head coach Dick Vermeil.
Allen began his collegiate career at the College of Sequoias in California before transferring to Lamar University for his final two seasons of eligibility. The San Marcos, Calif. native holds a bachelor’s in communications and a master’s of science in Kinesiology and exercise science. Allen and his wife, Taylor, have three children; Michael, Madelyn and Myles.
Sanders joined the Texas Southern coaching staff in 2019 as the team’s defensive backs coach and brings a wealth of experience as both a coach and player across all levels of football.
He comes to TSU after spending three seasons at nationally acclaimed junior college power East Mississippi Community College. Featured on the popular Netflix series Last Chance U, EMCC won back-to-back NJCAA National Championships and three consecutive MACJC State Championships under his watch. EMCC finished with a 23-1 record over the past two seasons and ranked No. 1 nationally in scoring defense after the 2018 season.
Before joining the staff at East Mississippi, Sanders was on the staff at Texas A&M as a graduate assistant in the secondary during a pair of eight-win seasons and back-to-back bowl game appearances.
Prior to his recent stint in College Station, Texas, Sanders received his first taste of collegiate coaching experience at the University of North Carolina. As a two-year defensive graduate assistant for the Tar Heels, Sanders helped mentor 2014 NFL Draft selections Tre Boston and Jabari Price of the Carolina Panthers and Minnesota Vikings, respectively. Sanders was also a part of UNC's 2013 Belk Bowl-winning team.
A native of Pearl, Miss. Sanders started his coaching career in his home state of Mississippi as a mathematics teacher and assistant coach in Quitman and Richland School Districts. After helping lead Quitman High School to three straight playoff appearances and developing four All-South State players as an assistant coach, he spent the 2011 campaign as Richland's defensive coordinator while also serving as head coach of the school's junior high football squad.
As a player, Sanders began his career at Northeast Mississippi CC and was voted the 2005 MACJC North Division's Defensive Back MVP in addition to helping lead the NEMCC Tigers to a 7-2 record, postseason bowl appearance and No. 15 final NJCAA ranking. He caught the attention of the University of Illinois and helped make history in 2007 as the Fighting Illini made a complete turnaround from the previous year by finishing 9-4 along with an upset over No. 1 ranked Ohio State on the road. Illinois earned a berth to the prestigious Rose Bowl and finished No. 20 in the final AP ranking, Sanders had 57 total stops, including four tackles for loss, eight pass breakups and three forced fumbles en route to earning a free agent contract with the NFL’s Detroit Lions in 2008.
Sanders and his wife, Ravonda, have a daughter, Journee.
J.B. Brown was named TSU’s special teams coordinator in the spring of 2019. Prior to arriving at TSU, Brown served a graduate assistant at the University of Houston and the University of Kansas.
Brown spent two seasons (2017-18) at the University of Houston as a graduate assistant with responsibilities for special teams and the secondary. Assisting with the team’s cornerbacks in 2018, the Cougars ranked second in the American Athletic Conference with 14 interceptions with two returned for touchdowns. UH was also second in PATs with 75-of-76 PATs converted and led the AAC in on-side kicks.
In 2017, a pair of safeties earned AAC Postseason honors in Khalil Williams (2nd team) and Terrell Williams (honorable mention) under Brown’s watch as the team ranked 39th nationally and second in conference in pass defense efficiency while ranking 23rd nationally in red zone defense. On special teams, UH led the AAC in PATs and was third in punting and kickoff return yardage. Williams signed with the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers while cornerback Isaiah Johnson was a fourth round draft pick by the Oakland Raiders.
During Brown’s two seasons at UH, the team participated in both the Hawaii (2017) and Armed Forces Bowls (2018).
Brown cut his teeth on the Power 5 level for two years (2015-16) in the Big 12 at the University of Kansas as a graduate assistant for special teams, recruiting, running back and linebackers. The Jayhawks ranked second in kickoff coverage in 2015 while linebacker Cameron Rosser ranked amongst the sacks leader in the Big 12. The Jayhawks also finished 21st nationally in red zone defense, 31st in third down conversion defense and second in the Big 12 in tackles for loss.
A native of Alvin, Texas, Brown was a standout baseball player and two-time all-conference second baseman at the University of Pacific. He was drafted in the 14th round of the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft by the New York Mets and played for the Brooklyn Cyclones, St. Lucie Mets and Savannah Sand Gnats as a minor leaguer. He also served as an undergraduate assistant coach at Pacific as he holds a degree in communications (2015).
The son of a successful Texas High School football head coach, Brown and his wife Jessica have a son, James Thomas Brown III.