GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Furman head coach Clay Hendrix has announced the recent hiring of Josh Miller as the Paladins' new defensive line coach.
Miller comes to Furman following four seasons at Charleston Southern, where he served as special teams coordinator and outside linebackers coach, working alongside Chad Staggs, the former Buccaneer defensive coordinator who joined the Furman staff in that same capacity in January.
While at CSU, Miller oversaw impressive special teams play and played a key role in some of the top defensive units in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS). From 2013-16 the Buccaneers posted a 35-14 record, won two conference championships, and earned a pair of invitations to the NCAA FCS Playoffs.
In 2016 one of Miller's pupils, Darius Hammond, earned All-Big South Conference honors for a third consecutive season and took home special teams player of the year honors after leading the league and ranking high nationally in punt returns and kickoff returns. In addition long snapper Joseph Smith collected all-conference honors for a second consecutive year to go along with second team STATS All-America honors.
Among Miller's group of outside linebackers Solomon Brown garnered first team all-conference laurels this past fall after registering 70 tackles, 14.5 tackles for-loss, and 4.5 sacks, helping the Bucs rank seventh nationally in total defense (294.1 ypg) and 18th in sacks (2.6/game), while also contributing significantly to CSU's third place ranking in passing defense (158.8 ypp).
The 2016 Buccaneer stop troops headlined a pair of late season victories over ranked Big South foes Liberty and Kennesaw State to secure a league championship and FCS playoff berth. In a 15-14 first round playoff loss at Wofford, Magee's front was central to the Bucs limiting the Terriers to 185 yards total, including just 141 on the ground, after Wofford entered the game ranked fifth nationally in rushing offense (295.8 ypg).
CSU finished the 2016 season ranked 14th in the final FCS poll, extending its streak of Top 25 rankings to a school record 22 weeks.
Miller's impressive work with the Bucs' special teams and defense helped CSU post a 4-0 record against cross-town rival The Citadel from 2013-15, highlighted by a pair of victories over the Bulldogs in 2015, including a 14-6 triumph in second round playoff action. In both victories that season, part of a 10-3 campaign, CSU put the clamps on The Citadel's prolific rushing attack, limiting the Bulldogs to 181 and 162 rushing yards, respectively.
The turnaround that paved the way for Charleston Southern's impressive four-year run began in 2013, when Miller helped the Bucs win their first seven games, highlighted by a 27-24 triumph over FBS transition Appalachian State, en route to a 10-3 worksheet and No. 22 final national ranking.
Miller joined the Charleston Southern staff following one season at Delta State University. Prior to Delta State, he spent the 2007-11 seasons as an assistant coach at Brevard College, where he served as defensive line, strength and conditioning, and special teams coach.
He got his start in coaching at his alma mater, Appalachian State, as a student assistant coach in 2007 and later at West Alamance (N.C.) High School.
The Burlington, N.C., native was a member of Appalachian State's football program from 2006, seeing action on the offensive and defense and also serving as a long snapper. A four-time SoCon Academic Honor Roll recipient, he received the SoCon Commissioner's Medal his junior and senior years.
Hunter Reid, Furman Sports Information