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MTSU names former SEC coach Derek Mason new Blue Raider head football coach

By MTN Sports Reporter: Dixon Riggins

The Middle Tennessee State Blue Raider football team’s search for a new head coach has come to a close today as they announced the hiring of former Vanderbilt head coach and Auburn defensive coordinator Derek Mason.

“We are ecstatic to welcome Coach Derek Mason to Middle Tennessee and the Blue Raider football program,” MTSU athletic director Chris Massaro said. “With his experience as a head coach, his reputation for coaching fast, aggressive defenses, his strong reputation as a recruiter, and deep connections in college football to formulate an outstanding staff, Coach Mason's vision for MTSU football fits exactly what we were looking for during our interview process.”

Mason spent seven seasons at the helm for the Commodores, amassing a 27-55 record with two bowl game appearances. His teams went 10-46 in SEC play and 3-23 against Top 25 ranked opponents.

After parting ways with the Commodores eight games into the 2020 COVID-shortened season, he spent a season each as the defensive coordinator for two Power 5 programs: Auburn and Oklahoma State. Over those two seasons, his defenses allowed 21.8 points per game and 372.0 yards per game (2021), and 28.9 points per game and 435.7 yards per game (2022) respectively.

He had also previously served on the defensive coaching staff for the 2010-13 Stanford Cardinal football teams that won two Pac-12 championships, as well as spending time in the NFL on the staff of the Minnesota Vikings.

Mason signed a five-year contract to become the next head football coach, and will be looking to give his head coaching career and the MTSU football program a fresh new start come 2024.


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