HARRISONBURG, Va., February 26, 2013 - James Madison University Football has named Jeff Hanson as its new defensive line coach, head coach Mickey Matthews announced today.
Hanson, previously the University of Virginia defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator, brings 39 years of collegiate football coaching experience, 28 of which were at fellow Colonial Athletic Association-school Richmond.
"I am really happy we have been able to attract Jeff Hanson to coach our defensive line," Matthews said. "After coaching against him for many years, we are fortunate to have him on our sideline."
Last season was Hanson's third year for the Cavaliers after working under Head Coach Mike London at Richmond the preceding two years as the defensive line coach, head of recruiting and assistant head coach. Hanson recruited well for the Cavaliers, bringing in talented young players to Virginia and earning the school top-30 rankings in recruiting for 2011 and 2012.
Prior to his hiring, the Cavs struggled defensively surrendering 173.8 yards rushing per game during the 2009 season. However, two years later in 2011 the team improved to number three in total defense and number five in defending the run in the ACC, while only giving up 139.5 rushing yards per game.
Before his time under London at UVA, Hanson coached at six different schools including Richmond ('71-'79, '89-'06, and '08-'09), VMI ('07), West Texas State ('87-'88), Southwest Texas State ('83-'86), Lamar ('82-'83) and Marshall ('80-'81). While working with the Richmond Spiders, he helped the team to a 2008 FCS National Championship and one year later, a share of the 2009 CAA title.
During the 2008 season, Hanson guided Lawrence Sidbury and Sherman Logan to possibly the best season ever by a pair of defensive ends in Richmond history. The tandem combined for 17.5 of the teams 36 sacks and both earned All-CAA honors for their efforts.
A native of Beloit, Wisconsin, Hanson graduated from Beloit High School in 1967. He played linebacker for Richmond and was part of the 1968 Tangerine Bowl Championship team.
Hanson remained with the Spiders as a graduate assistant, coaching the freshmen defensive lineman from 1971-73 while completing his degree in physical education and his master of education. Hanson then became a full-time member of Richmond's staff, working with the tight ends and receivers during his first year and with the defense over the next four seasons.
Hanson and his wife DeDe have three daughters, Laurie, Kristin and Katie.