Cornell Jackson Tabbed as UTEP Running Backs Coach

Sean Kugler added a sixth assistant to his evolving staff today, bringing on Cornell Jackson to take over as the running backs coach for the Miners. Jackson, who was actually a defensive back in his playing days, has coached on both sides of the ball for over 25 years now.

In 1987, Jackson took his first coaching gig as the running backs coach at Butler County Community College. He then took a position coaching defensive ends as a graduate assistant at Central Missouri State from 1988-1989.

After his stay at Central, he moved on to coach linebackers at Utah State from 1990-1991, Pacific from 1992-1994, and then had his first stop with the New Mexico Lobos in 1995.

In 1996, Jackson made the move to the offensive side of the ball when he became the running backs coach at Arizona State, where he stayed through 1999. But, in 2001 he moved to the defense, once again coaching linebackers, this time for the University of Houston.

Following his stint with the Cougars, Jackson moved on to Washington where he coached linebackers in 2003, safeties in 2004, and was then named the running backs coach and recruiting coordinator.

However, following the 2004 season, he had his second stop in Albuquerque, where he became the running backs coach for the Lobos from 2005-2006. After UNM, Jackson took over running backs at Baylor for the 2007 season.

In 2008, Jackson coached at Kansas State as the linebackers coach, before moving to Purdue in 2009. From 2009-2012, he was the running backs coach for the Boilermakers, and helped lead them to bowl bids each of the last two years.

Along the way, he also did four internships in the NFL with the Seattle Seahawks (linebackers - 1993), the St. Louis Rams (running backs - 1999), the Denver Broncos (running backs - 2001), and the San Diego Chargers (linebackers - 2004).

Coach Kugler had this to say about Jackson:

"Coach Jackson has vast experience...He worked at Baylor, New Mexico, Arizona State, Washington and Purdue. He has unbelievable background. He actually coached on the staff where my son plays. The feedback I have gotten from everybody, including my son, is that he's a fair coach, he gets the best out of his players and they all respect him. I am excited to get somebody of his caliber on our staff."

I don't think that Jackson's knowledge of the game can be questioned. He's spent time coaching the running backs at multiple schools from the power conferences around college football. He also spent time doing a running backs internship with the Broncos under Mike Shannahan. That's intriguing.

However, the one thing that pops up is just the lack of stability throughout his career. It seems like he never spent more than a year at a place before he got to Purdue. Why? Who really knows. If this guys gets as much out of his players, and as much respect from his players as claimed, he should be a great hire.

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