Courtney Coard is in his third season as the Aggies defensive line coach. He has taken two undersized defensive lines and transformed them into one of the best foursomes in the MEAC and the nation.
In the past two seasons, the Aggies have produced a Top-5 nationally ranked rush defense. At season’s end in 2012, the Aggies had the second-best total defense in Division I-FCS. Defensive end Tony Mashburn developed into one of the best in the MEAC over the past two years. Mashburn collected an impressive 22 ½ tackles for loss, more than any other Aggie over the last two years. He also made 82 tackles and 11 sacks in two years under Coard.
At the other defensive end spot, Tyree Hearn has 13 tackles for loss and five sacks over the last two years. Defensive tackle Chris Neal also had a career year during his senior season in 2012. He had career highs in tackles (33), tackles for loss (9) and sacks (3).
Before coming to A&T, Coard coached defensive ends and assisted in coaching defensive tackles at Grambling. Coard assisted defensive coordinator/defensive line coach Cliff Yoshida in 2009 and ‘10. Coard helped the defensive line produce 7.8 tackles for loss per game. It helped the Tigers rank 15th nationally in tackles for loss. Defensive lineman Christian Anthony ranked 31st in the nation in sacks per game and finished 19th in tackles for loss. The following season, defensive lineman Antonio Leonard registered 1.2 tackles for loss per game.
Prior to his arrival at Grambling, Coard served as N.C. Central’s assistant defensive line coach in 2008. He assisted with the weekly game plan by breaking down film. He also oversaw study hall and student-athlete tutoring.
Coard was a four-year starter at defensive tackle for N.C. Central from 2004-07. His presence helped the Eagles win consecutive CIAA titles in 2005 and ‘06. In 2004, he was named to the CIAA’s All-Rookie Team. Academically, Coard earned a B.A., degree in business management in 2008. Two years later, he received a M.S., degree in sports administration from Grambling.