Coaching Staff

HEAD FOOTBALL COACH

Malzahn
Gus Malzahn

  • Gus Malzahn is in his sixth year as Auburn’s Head Football Coach (53-27, .663)
  • Malzahn has led Auburn to six consecutive bowl games including 4 New Year’s Day bowls
  • Malzahn led Auburn to the BCS National Championship Game, a SEC Championship in 2013 and two SEC West Division Championships (2013, 2017)
  • Named 2013 National Coach of the Year (AP, Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden, Eddie Robinson, Home Depot, Liberty Mutual, SB Nation and  Sporting News)
  • Auburn Offensive Coordinator (2009-2011); National Champion and SEC Champion – 2010; Won Broyles Award
  • Coached Cam Newton, Heisman Trophy Winner, Drafted No. 1 overall by the Carolina Panthers
  • Coached Nick Marshall, now with the Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Produced 13 1,000-yard rushers in nine seasons as a college head coach/coordinator, at least one in each season, including Heisman Trophy finalist Tre Mason (1,816) and Nick Marshall (1,068) in 2013 and Cameron-Artis Payne (1,608) in 2014
  •  Salary: $7,000,000 plus Performance Incentives
OFFENSIVE COACHES

Auburn football Kenny Dillingham mug on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018 in Auburn, Ala.Todd Van Emst/Heisman Trust
Kenny Dillingham
OC/QBs

  • Kenny Dillingham is in his first year as Auburn’s Offensive Coordinator
  • Dillingham comes from Memphis where in 2018 he led the Tigers to impressive offensive numbers, ranking fourth nationally in total offense (534.3 ypg), third in rushing offense (285.5 ypg) and seventh in scoring offense (43.6 ppg).
  • Under Dillingham’s lead, Walter Camp First Team All-American and Doak Walker Award finalist Darrell Henderson rushed for 1,909 yards and 22 scores for the Tigers this season, while quarterback Brady White threw for 3,125 yards and 25 touchdowns.
  • In 2017 as quarterbacks and tight ends coach, Dillingham helped Memphis set school single-season records for points (592), total plays (941), total yards (6,917), passing yards (4,355), completions (307), attempts (488), offensive touchdowns (72) and passing touchdowns (39).
  • Dillingham mentored quarterback Riley Ferguson who blossomed into one of the nation’s top signal-callers. Ferguson finished 2017 as the country’s third-best quarterback for passing yards (4,257) and touchdowns (38).
  • During his first season at Memphis in 2016, Dillingham was on staff working with quarterbacks. Memphis’ offense that season racked up 6,028 total yards and 505 points and scored 57 touchdowns, all third-most in school history.
  • Under Dillingham’s guidance in 2016, Ferguson, threw for 3,698 yards and 32 touchdown passes to set a then-program season mark, only to break his own mark a season later.
  • Prior to coming to Memphis, Dillingham served on the Arizona State staff as an offensive assistant in 2014-15. In his time with the Sun Devils, he worked directly with the tight ends and also assisted in recruiting, with his primary focus being the state of Arizona.
  • From 2007-12 Dillingham served in several coaching capacities with the Chaparral High School football program in Scottsdale, Ariz.
  • Dillingham married the former Briana Pimpton in February of 2018.

Kodi Burns
Kodi Burns
Co-OC/WRs

  • Kodi Burns is in his third year as Auburn’s Wide Receivers coach
  • Comes to Auburn from Arizona State where he had been named the running backs coach earlier this year.
  • Burns spent the 2015 season as the wide receivers coach at Middle Tennessee State, where he mentored Richie James and Ed Battlies. James led Conference USA with 108 receptions and his 1,346 receiving yards were third in the conference, and Battlies’ 82 receptions and 1,048 receiving yards ranked fourth and fifth in the conference, respectively.
  • Burns was the running back coach at Samford University in 2014
  • Burns was a graduate assistant at Arkansas State under Malzahn in 2012
  • Former Auburn QB and WR from 2007-2010, including playing a key role during the 2010 National and SEC Championship season
  • Burns served as an offensive graduate assistant in 2013, helping Auburn to an SEC Championship and an appearance in the 2014 BCS Championship game
  • Salary: $350,000

J.B. Grimes
OL
  • J.B. Grimes coached at Auburn from 2013-2015.
  • Previous stops: UConn (2017), Arkansas State (2015), Kansas (2010-11) and Mississippi State (2004-08), Virginia Tech (1993-97)
  • A coaching veteran of over 30 years, Grimes has coached in 18 bowl games and mentored over 50 players that have played in the National Football League.
  • As an offensive lineman at Henderson State, he helped his team to a 40-6 record in four seasons, including a berth in the 1974 NAIA Championship game. He earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Henderson State in 1977 and a master’s degree in education from Louisiana-Monroe in 1981.
  • Grimes grew up in Clarendon, Arkansas, and is married to the former Jennifer Graves, who received a degree in advertising and public relations from Arkansas. The couple has four children, sons Aaron and Nick and daughters Danielle and Lindsey.
  • Salary:  TBA
Carnell WilliamsCarnell Williams
RBs
  • Former Auburn All-American Carnell ‘Cadillac’ Williams was named running backs coach at Auburn in January 2019.
  • Williams helped lead Auburn to an undefeated season in 2004 while earning All-America honors that year. The 2005 NFL Rookie of the Year, Williams had a seven-year NFL career before entering the coaching ranks.
  • A native of Gadsden, Alabama, and product of Etowah High School, Williams finished his Auburn career (2001-04) with 3,831 yards on 741 attempts with 45 touchdowns. He broke the Auburn career record of most running attempts, passing Joe Cribbs, and most TDs scored, passing Bo Jackson, while finishing second in total rushing yards and all-purpose yards.
  • The 2004 SEC Special Teams Player of the Year, Williams received nine SEC Player of the Week honors in his career, while helping AU to a 37-14 record and three SEC Western Division titles.
  • The fifth pick overall pick of the 2005 NFL draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Williams was named the NFL Rookie of the Year after leading all rookies in rushing yards with 1,178, while posting six 100-yard rushing games in 14 starts. Williams spent six seasons with Tampa Bay before spending his final season in 2011 with the St. Louis Rams.
  • Williams’ coaching career started at Henderson State in 2015 where he served as the running backs coach. After a stint at the University of West Georgia in 2016, Williams was the running backs coach for IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida for two season (2017-18). Williams most recently served as the running backs coach for the Birmingham Iron of the Alliance of American Football (AAF).
  • Williams graduated from Auburn in December 2014. He and his wife Evan Williams have two boys: Cole (4) and Cuinn (2).
  • Salary: $ 350,000
Larry PorterLarry Porter
TEs/H-Backs & Special Teams
  • Larry Porter is in his third year as Auburn’s Tight Ends and H-Backs coach and Recruiting Coordinator
  • Porter comes to Auburn from North Carolina, where he coached running backs and coordinated special teams for the past three seasons
  • Before UNC, Porter coached running backs at Texas and Arizona State. From 2010-11, he was the head coach at Memphis, his alma mater.  Porter earned the head coaching opportunity after excelling on Les Miles’ staff at LSU for five seasons from 2005-09.
  • At LSU, Porter twice earned National Recruiter of the Year honors by Rivals.com, in 2007 and 2009.
  • Porter coached 1,000-yard rushers at Arkansas State, Oklahoma State, LSU and North Carolina. In 2015, UNC’s Elijah Hood ran for 1,463 yards and 17 touchdowns.
  • A four-year letterman at Memphis, Porter rushed for 2,194 career yards and served as co-captain as a senior in 1993.
  • After coaching high school football in Memphis, Porter moved to college football in 1998, coaching running backs at Tennessee Martin. The 2017 season will be Porter’s 20th coaching college football.
DEFENSIVE COACHES

AuburnKevin Steele
DC

  • Kevin Steele is in his third year as Auburn’s Defensive Coordinator
  • Steele has six years as a defensive coordinator in the SEC and ACC including previous estops at Alabama, LSU and Tennessee.  He’s also coached at Clemson, Florida State, Baylor and Carolina of the NFL.
  • Named Rivals national recruiter of the year in 2005.
  • Steele’s brother, Jeff, is the associate athletics director for facilities and operations at Auburn
  • Steele played three seasons of collegiate football as a linebacker. He spent his freshman year at Furman University before transferring to Tennessee, where he was a member of Johnny Majors’ 1978 and 1979 squads.
  • Salary: $1,100,000 (3 year contract)
Travis Williams
T. Williams
LBs
  • Travis Williams is in his third year coaching Auburn’s linebackers
  • Williams signed with Auburn in 2001, redshirted his first season, and played the next four, winning All-SEC honors during the Tigers’ unbeaten 2004 season and winning all-conference honors again in 2005. He led Auburn in tackles in 2004, was second in 2005 and third in 2003. He won the Pat Dye Leadership Award for defense in 2004 and 2005.
  • Williams played for the Atlanta Falcons in 2006 and 2007.
  • Williams returned to Auburn in 2009 as a graduate assistant and was part of Auburn’s 2010 national championship season. He rejoined the Auburn program in 2014 as a defensive analyst and served as an on-field coach for the last two bowl games in the midst of coaching changes.
  • Williams graduated from Auburn in 2005 with a degree in criminology and criminal justice. He earned a master’s degree from Auburn in 2011 in adult education.
  • Salary: $225,000

R. Garner
Assoc. HC / DL
 

  • Rodney Garner is in his sixth year as Auburn’s defensive line coach
  • Garner played for Auburn and was named All-SEC offensive line and honorable mention All-America as a senior at Auburn in 1988, captaining the team that captured the 1988 SEC Championship.  After his playing career at Auburn, Garner had a free agent tryout with the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers and played with the Pittsburgh Gladiators arena football team in 1989. He began his coaching career at Auburn in 1990.
  • Previously at Georgia for 15 years where he coached five NFL first round draft choices — Richard Seymour (Patriots) and Marcus Stroud (Jaguars), both Pro Bowl starters; David Pollack (Bengals); Charles Grant (Saints); and Johnathan Sullivan (Saints). He also coached draft picks DeAngelo Tyson (7th, Ravens, `12), Geno Atkins (4th, Bengals, ’10), Corvey Irvin (3rd, Panthers, `09), Jarius Wynn (6th, Packers, ’09), Kedric Golston (6th, Redskins, `06), Robert Geathers (4th, Bengals, ’04), Emarlos Leroy (6th, Jaguars, `99), and free agents Ken Veal (Chargers, `04), Paul Snellings (Colts, 2000), Brandon Miller (Colts, 2000), Charles Johnson (Panthers, ’07), Tyrone Robertson (Bills, 2000) and Demetric Evans (Cowboys, `01)
  • At Auburn, coached Dee Ford, who was a Ted Hendricks Award semifinalist and SI.com All-America honorable mention as well as both a Coaches All-SEC first-team and Associated Press All-SEC first-team selection; drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs; Also coached Gabe Wright, an AP All-SEC honorable mention pick; drafted by the Detroit Lions
  • Garner’s cousin is Charles Barkley
  • Salary: $550,000
Wesley McGriffWes McGriff
Co-DC /
Secondary
 

  • Wesley McGriff, who coached on the 2016 Auburn football staff is returning to the program as a defensive assistant coach, Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn announced Wednesday. McGriff, who helped the Auburn defense achieve great success during his season on the Plains, served the previous two seasons as defensive coordinator at Ole Miss.
  • In his one season as secondary coach and co-defensive coordinator at Auburn, McGriff helped guide the Tigers to a Sugar Bowl berth as the Tigers went from the bottom third of the SEC in 2015 to top three in the league in 2016 in scoring defense (11th/26.0 to 2nd/15.6), rushing defense (11th/182.7 to 3rd/124.8) and third-down conversion defense (13th/44.9 to 2nd/34.0).
  • McGriff was named defensive coordinator at Ole Miss on December 16, 2016. He was promoted to associate head coach on July 20, 2017.
  • McGriff spent three seasons (2013-15) with the NFL’s New Orleans Saints, working with the defensive backs. In his first two years, McGriff oversaw the development of young players such as safeties Rafael Bush, Kenny Vaccaro and Pierre Warren and cornerback Terrence Frederick, as well as veterans like safety Jairus Byrd and cornerback Keenan Lewis. In 2015, Lewis led the Saints with 13 passes defensed, while adding two interceptions. Vaccaro led the New Orleans secondary with 113 tackles and added one sack and two interceptions. McGriff also worked the undrafted rookie Warren into the starting lineup for the final six games due to injuries in the secondary and he responded, tying for the team lead with three takeaways.
  • Salary: $300,000
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Ryan Russell
Strength &
Conditioning

  • Russell is in his sixth year, serving as the director of strength and conditioning for Auburn football
  • Russell held a similar position on Malzahn’s staff at Arkansas State, where he served as director of athletic performance during the 2012 season
  • From 2010-11, Russell served an assistant strength and conditioning coach at Auburn, working with the football program. He was also football’s director of sports nutrition.
  • Russell was an associate strength and conditioning coach for the Boise State football team from 2007-09
  • He served professional internships as a strength and conditioning coach at Pitt (2005) and Louisville (2004-05) before coming to Auburn as a graduate assistant coach in 2005-06
  • Russell played professional football in the Arena Football League for the Las Vegas Gladiators and the Louisville Fire in 2003
  • Salary: $285,000