LEXINGTON, Ky. – A former All-Southeastern Conference defensive tackle at Auburn and member of LSU’s staff during its national championship run in 2007, Jimmy Brumbaugh has joined Mark Stoops’ staff at Kentucky as an assistant coach for defensive linemen, Stoops announced Tuesday.
“I think Jimmy will do a tremendous job in player development,” Stoops said. “It’s of major importance to teach defensive line play at the level of expectation that Coach Eliot (defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot) and I have.
“Jimmy comes from the heritage of the legendary Pete Jenkins,” Stoops continued. Jenkins coached defensive line play for decades in the SEC (including Brumbaugh at Auburn), other colleges and in the National Football League. “When I talked with Jimmy, he blew me away with his organization and plan of how he teaches and develops the defensive line.”
Brumbaugh has impressive credentials as a player and most recently a coach over the last 15-plus years. Brumbaugh’s most recent BCS stop was a two-year stint at Syracuse University, where he coached the defensive tackles in 2011 and the defensive line in 2010. While with the Orange, Brumbaugh helped guide the team to an 8-5 record his first season and a victory in the 2010 New Era Pinstripe Bowl over Kansas State.
SU showed drastic improvements in national defensive rankings in 2010 under Brumbaugh, moving from 81st in scoring defense to 17th and 37th in total defense to seventh. One of the reasons for the defensive improvements was two-time All-Big East defensive end Chandler Jones, who was drafted 21st overall by the New England Patriots in the 2012 NFL Draft.
“I’m glad to be part of Coach Stoops’ vision for the Kentucky program,” Brumbaugh said. “Watching his defense this year, and knowing his attention to detail, is exciting.
“I’m glad to be part of the Big Blue Nation. When you think of the tradition of the SEC, and having played at Kentucky (during the 1995 season), I’m glad to be here and have the opportunity to be in this one-of-a-kind league.”
Prior to his time at Syracuse, Brumbaugh coached the defensive line at Louisiana Tech in 2008 and 2009, helping the Bulldogs to an 8-5 record, including a win over SEC foe Mississippi State and a win in the 2008 Independence Bowl over Northern Illinois. Brumbaugh took over a defensive front that ranked 46th nationally against the rush in 2007 and moved that ranking to 13th at the conclusion of the 2008 season.
Brumbaugh’s defensive front also ranked 45th nationally in sacks in 2008, led by D’Anthony Smith, who was a two-time first-team All-Western Athletic Conference performer after ranking second in the league among defensive linemen with 65 tackles. Smith was not the only player that saw success under Brumbaugh in 2008 as eight Bulldog defensive linemen recorded at least one sack. Overall, Louisiana Tech earned 27 sacks in 2008, which was the most by a Bulldog team in nearly a decade. Tech also recorded a 21-0 shutout win against San Jose State in 2008, which was the school’s first shutout since 1996, spanning 148 games.
The native of Keystone Heights, Fla., is not only known for his coaching of defensive fronts, but also his knowledge of strength and conditioning. Brumbaugh served two seasons as an assistant strength and conditioning coordinator at LSU in 2006 and 2007, helping lead the Tigers to the 2007 national championship and a Sugar Bowl championship after the ’06 season. While with the Tigers, Brumbaugh helped produce NFL-ready talent, helping 12 players get drafted, including five first-round picks.
Before his stop at LSU, Brumbaugh got his first coaching role at Jacksonville State as a student assistant coach, guiding the Gamecocks to the 2004 Ohio Valley Conference championship and a 9-2 record. He spent the 2005 season at Tennessee-Chattanooga as the defensive line coach before going to LSU.
Brumbaugh recently completed a one-year term at East Mississippi Community College, where he was in charge of the defensive line and the strength and conditioning coordinator. Brumbaugh helped lead the Lions to a top-10 national ranking with an 8-2 record en route to the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges North Division championship. Brumbaugh’s defensive line had a solid season, collecting a combined 224 tackles, including 44.5 tackles for loss, 21.5 sacks and seven fumbles forced. For the season, the EMCC defense allowed just 74.5 rushing yards per game and only 15.3 points per game.
Before moving into the coaching ranks, Brumbaugh had a fantastic career as a player at Auburn and spent some time in professional football. At Auburn, Brumbaugh started 44 of his 48 career games, gathering 291 tackles and 15 sacks as a nose tackle and defensive tackle. Brumbaugh was named Freshman All-SEC in 1995, second-team All-SEC in 1996 and first-team All-SEC in 1997. During his time at Auburn, Brumbaugh helped the team earn the 1997 SEC Western Division championship and won the 1997 Peach Bowl and 1996 Independence Bowl. Auburn played in the Outback Bowl following his freshman season.
After his collegiate career ended, Brumbaugh signed a free-agent deal with the San Francisco 49ers in 2000 although most of his professional playing career was spent in the XFL with the Birmingham Bolts and in arena football with the Georgia Force and Birmingham Steel Dogs.
Brumbaugh graduated from Auburn University with a degree in health and human performance. He is married to the former Kelly Jones. They have two sons, Legend and Nash.