The Presbyterian College Athletic Department and head football coach Harold Nichols announced today that former PC Head Coach Tommy Spangler is re-joining the Blue Hose as Defensive Coordinator. He will assume his new role March 1, 2013.
"I'm excited about coming back and I know the people at Presbyterian College are excited as well. I've been coaching for close to 30 years and the best 10 of those were spent at PC," said Spangler. "I want to thank Coach Nichols, Director of Athletics Brian Reese and President Claude Lilly. They wanted me to come back, not just an assistant coach but as someone who means a lot to the program and the institution, as well as someone who could help create something special at PC."
"Louisiana Tech has been a great place for me and my family the past six years, but we're excited to be returning to Clinton and Laurens County."
"This is a great day for our football program and Presbyterian College with the announcement of Tommy Spangler coming back as defensive coordinator," said Coach Nichols. "Coach Spangler brings a history of success in Division I football to help us build a championship program at PC. We welcome his family with his wife Kim and children Pierce, Peyton and Gracie to be a part of our family."
"Coach Spangler returning as defensive coordinator is a huge step for the football program and the entire athletics department," said Reese. "He brings a tremendous coaching resume back to PC and I am excited to see what he brings to the team. I'd like to thank Dr. Lilly for playing a tremendous role in recruiting Coach Spangler."
Spangler has spent the last six years as defensive coordinator at Louisiana Tech. During that time, Spangler took a Bulldog defense that ranked dead last in the country (among FBS programs) in scoring defense, rushing defense and total defense prior to his arrival and coached them into one of the top defensive units in the Western Athletic Conference.
He guided a defense that had six All-WAC selections for the 2011 season and a group that scored six defensive touchdowns, the best scoring defense Tech saw in two decades. The Bulldog defense ended the year ranked 13th in the nation in turnover margin and had a +15 turnover margin during the team's seven-game winning streak. Spangler was a 2011 Broyles Award nominee for his defensive efforts that season.
Spangler spent the past two decades as a full-time coach on the college football sideline where he served the first 10 years at Georgia Southern, helping lead the program to a pair of Division I-AA national titles.
After taking the job as the secondary coach at Georgia Southern in 1987, Spangler was promoted to co-defensive coordinator in 1990 and then took over the sole reins of the program's defense in 1992.
The Stone Mountain, Ga., native earned the Southern Conference Defensive Coach of the Year Award in 1993 as the Eagles won the league title and advanced to the playoffs. His defense ranked sixth nationally in scoring defense.
Spangler spent 10 seasons at PC the first time around, first as an assistant coach from 1997- 2000 and then as head coach from 2001-06, During his six years as PC's head football coach, Spangler guided the Blue Hose to a 42-24 record - a mark that stands as the highest winning percentage (.571) among the school's 14 head football coaches.
In 2006, Spangler's defense at Presbyterian College ranked first in the South Atlantic Conference in scoring defense (13.2 ppg) and total defense (233.5 ypg) en route to a 7-4 record. In 2005, he led PC to a 10-2 mark, the South Atlantic Conference title and the school's first appearance ever in the NCAA Division II playoffs and a top 10 national rankings, earning him the league's Coach of the Year Award.
He also garnered two American Football Coaches Association Region 2 Coach of the Year Awards while with the Blue Hose. His defenses were ranked in the top half of the South Atlantic Conference in all defensive categories each of his last eight seasons there, and his 1998 Blue Hose unit forced 48 turnovers in 11 games and ranked first nationally in turnover margin (+2.27).
"Our former players and alumni will be excited Coach Spangler is coming back as he had tremendous success as an assistant coach then head coach," said Nichols. "He understands PC and the great institution that it is. He'll be a great asset to the football program and, the college and the community."
"Coach Spangler has helped me my entire coaching career as a mentor and close friend of mine," said Nichols. "I owe him a lot in establishing my coaching and football philosophy. Having the opportunity to coach together again will be exciting for me professionally and personally."
Spangler played defensive back at the University of Georgia from 1979 through 1982 and was a member of the 1980 Division I National Championship team that defeated Notre Dame in the Sugar Bowl. He lettered his senior season helping Georgia to the 1982 Southeastern Conference title, the program's third straight.
"I made many good friends while at PC and developed several longstanding relationships with the players," said Spangler. "I'm excited to work with Coach (Todd) Varn, who was my Offensive Coordinator when I was head coach. Klay Killingsworth was my graduate assistant when I first started as an assistant coach and David Dunagan played for me. Of course, I can't wait to work with Coach Nichols again after having spent many years together at PC and Georgia Southern."
Spangler earned his bachelor's degree in physical education from Georgia in the spring of 1984. He is married to the former Kim Pierce of Ft. White, Fla., and they are the parents of three children, Pierce, Peyton, and Gracie.
1985 - 1986 Georgia (Graduate Assistant)
1987 - 1989 Georgia Southern (DB)
1990 - 1991 Georgia Southern (Co-DC)
1992 - 1996 Georgia Southern (DC)
1997 - 2000 Presbyterian (DC/Asst. HC)
2001 - 2006 Presbyterian HC
2007 - 2012 Louisiana Tech (DC)
1 SAC (2005)
1993 SoCon Defensive Coach of the Year
2005 SAC Coach of the Year
2005 AFCA Region 2 Coach of the Year
2011 Broyles Award nominee