Jeff Girsch | Angelo State University

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Team: Angelo State University
Organization: NCAA Football
Position: Head Coach
Hometown: Waterloo, Iowa


Jeff Girsch, who has spent more than 20 years as a college football coach, will enter his fifth season as head coach of the Rams in 2022, ninth overall at Angelo State.

Taking over the program in 2018, Girsch transformed a .500 win team into a national championship contender in just three seasons. The Rams finished the 2021 campaign with an 11-3 overall record, advancing to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division II National Championship for only the second time in program history. They also tied the most wins in a season in the Division II era with 11. The Rams tallied 26 All-Conference honors including the Lone Star Conference Defensive Player of the Year in Hunter Kyle, the Offensive Lineman of the Year in Willis Patrick, and the Running Back of the Year in Nathaniel Omayebu III. The Rams ranked 11th in Division II in rushing yards per game with 224.9 and had the eighth ranked defense, allowing 253.3 yards of offense per game. He was named the AFCA Region 4 Coach of the Year after leading the Rams to one of the most historic seasons the program has ever seen.

The 2020 LSC season was canceled due to the pandemic but the Rams found a way to get better, going 2-2 in a shortened fall season with wins over West Texas A&M and Division I FCS Abilene Christian. In his first season as head coach, Girsch led the Rams to an 8-3 overall record, going 5-3 in the Lone Star conference to finish third overall.

As the Defensive Coordinator, Girsch led a defensive unit in 2017 that received four Lone Star Conference first-team selections and was second in the conference by limiting opponents to 348.5 yards per game. Three defensive players, Markus Jones, Justin Jackson and Fred Lawrence were named All-Americans after the season where the Rams held quarterbacks to 211.6 yards per game in 2017 and rushers to 136.8 yards. ASU’s defense allowed only 22.5 points per games and saw Bright Ihegworo, Jones, Jackson and Lawrence each earn LSC first-team honors. Jones was named the LSC Defensive Player of the Year after finishing the season with 10.5 sacks and 63 total tackles. Jackson earned LSC Linebacker of the Year and Lawrence was LSC Defensive Back of the Year. 

The 2016 Ram defense only allowed 341.2 yards per game in one of the more prolific offensive leagues in the nation. The yards per game was the second lowest given up since 2002. The Rams defense also finished 1st in the LSC conference and  5th  in the nation in opponents 3rd down percentage holding them to a 26.5% rate. Six players were named all-conference highlighted by Markus Jones and Justin Jackson on the first team. Jones and Bright Ihegworo picked up all-region honors for their play on the defensive line and combined for 13 sacks between the two.

The 2015 Ram defense finished second in the conference in total defense, scoring defense, sacks, opponents 1st downs, and opponents 4th down conversions.  They also finished first in the conference in opponents 3rd downs percentage while forcing 19 turnovers. Opponents were held to just 207.1 yards per game passing. Clayton Callicutt, Fred Lawrence, John Siliga, Jeremy Johnson, Willie Brown, Richard Franklin and Ryan Clapsaddle earned LSC All-Conference selections. Clayton Callicutt was also named LSC Defensive Lineman of the Year for the second straight season.  The Rams were No. 13 nationally with four defensive touchdowns and No. 15 in tackles for loss.

Girsch’s defense produced four LSC All-Conference players including two first team selections in linebacker Rush Seaver (148 total tackles,  second highest season total in ASU history) and defensive end Clayton Callicutt (LSC Defensive Lineman of the Year), and two second team selections in cornerback Jarred Ross and defensive tackle John Siligia. 

Prior to joining Angelo State University, Girsch had spent 18 years coaching at St. Ambrose University, with his last six as the Defensive Coordinator and Assistant Head Coach.  He was named the MSFA Assistant Football Coach of the Year in 2008. During his tenure at St. Ambrose, Girsch coached over 50 All-Conference Players, Five All-Americans, and was a part of Seven Mid-States Football Association Conference Championships. His defense finished in the top 25 in scoring five of his six years as the Coordinator, highlighted by a No. 2 finish in 2009 and a No. 5 finish in 2011. 

Girsch is a graduate of St. Ambrose University, where he excelled as a four-year starter as a wide receiver on the football team.  He currently ranks fourth in career receiving yards (1,617), 10th in career receiving touchdowns (11), and 10th in career receptions (94). 

Girsch and his wife Erin, who is the Tutoring Center & Supplemental Instruction Coordinator at ASU are proud parents of two daughters, Jamee and Jill.

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