Head coach Dabo Swinney enters his 16th season in charge of the Clemson Tigers and is one of the most successful in the game. But who makes up the rest of the 2023 Clemson coaching staff?
Clemson Tigers Coaching Staff
Head Coach, Dabo Swinney
Since assuming the role of head coach full-time in 2009 (he was only the interim HC in 2008), Swinney has transformed Clemson into a team at the very forefront of college football. Under his stewardship, the Tigers went to four national championship games in five years, emerging from two of them with a national title.
The incredible run of success enjoyed by the Tigers under Swinney includes 12 double-digit win seasons dating back to 2011. Meanwhile, he’s led Clemson to eight ACC titles, amassing a 99-19 (.839) record in ACC regular-season games. Furthermore, Swinney has the fifth-most wins for a coach through 200 games in FBS history.
It’s a testament to the standard that Swinney has set at Clemson that anything short of double-digit wins and an ACC title is considered nationally as disappointing for the Tigers, especially given that prior to 2011, they hadn’t surpassed 10 wins since 1990.
Remarkably, Clemson is Swinney’s first head coaching role. Prior to taking over the reigns on an interim basis in 2008, he previously filled multiple roles at Alabama between 1993 and 2000 — his alma mater. He arrived on the Clemson coaching staff in 2003, working with the wide receivers up until 2008.
Offensive Coordinator, Garrett Riley
After a difficult season offensively in 2022, Swinney bolstered the Clemson coaching staff by adding Garrett Riley as offensive coordinator, quarterbacks coach, and assistant coach.
Riley heads to the Tigers hot off one of the most astonishing success stories of the 2022 campaign. The new Clemson OC received the Broyles Award as college football’s top assistant coach after leading TCU to the College Football National Championship Game.
Between his solo season in Fort Worth and two seasons as offensive coordinator at SMU, Riley has produced top-15 offenses in his last three campaigns. The former Texas Tech and Stephen F. Austin QB has been a college coach since 2012, and you can find his coaching history below.
- Augustana (Ill.) College (RB coach, 2012)
- East Carolina (general assistant, 2013-2014; WR coach, 2015)
- Kansas (offensive analyst, 2016; QB coach 2017; TE/FB coach, 2018)
- Appalachian State (RB Coach, 2019)
- SMU (OC, 2020-2021)
- TCU (OC, 2022)
Defensive Coordinator, Wes Goodwin
Other than as a three-year flirtation at the NFL level with the Arizona Cardinals, Wes Goodwin has been a fixture on Clemson’s coaching staff since 2009. Goodwin is the epitome of a homegrown talent, working his way up through the ranks until being named defensive coordinator in 2021.
In addition to his role as DC, Goodwin is also responsible for coaching Clemson’s linebackers. In his first season leading the defense, the Tigers ranked in the top 25 across a multitude of defensive metrics — headlined by the second-most tackles for loss in the country.
While he has been described as one of the “best young defensive minds” in football, Goodwin actually got his coaching start as a baseball manager at his alma mater, Mississippi State.
In 2009, he arrived on Clemson’s coaching staff as a graduate assistant before serving as a defensive analyst under Brent Venables between 2012-2014. Upon returning from his NFL sojourn, Goodwin was a senior defensive assistant between 2018 and 2021 until his promotion to defensive coordinator.
Cornerbacks Coach, Mike Reed
After coaching cornerbacks for ACC rival North Carolina State between 2007 and 2012, Mike Reed joined the Clemson coaching staff as the cornerbacks coach in 2013. He’s overseen some of the best defensive backs in college football during that time. Reed also serves as special teams coordinator and assistant HC.
Wide Receivers Coach, Tyler Grisham
Another homegrown talent on Clemson’s coaching staff, Tyler Grisham, reeled in 132 receptions for 1,390 yards and eight scores as a Tiger before serving as a graduate assistant and offensive analyst between 2014 and 2019. He was named WR coach in 2020 and is also a recruiting coordinator for the team.
Tight Ends Coach, Kyle Richardson
A highly successful head coach at the high school level, Kyle Richardson joined the Clemson coaching staff after leading Northwestern HS to state titles in 2013 and 2015. Richardson served multiple roles before being named passing game coordinator and tight ends coach in 2021.
Offensive Line Coach, Thomas Austin
A 38-game starter for the Tigers as a player, Thomas Austin has had two stints on Clemson’s coaching staff, sandwiching a two-year spell as Georgia’s OL coach. Formerly a graduate assistant, Austin was named the offensive line coach in 2022 — taking over from the long-tenured Robbie Caldwell.
Running Backs Coach, C.J. Spiller
Is there anyone more qualified to coach running backs at Clemson than C.J. Spiller? Residing in the Clemson Athletic Hall of Fame, the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame, and College Football Hall of Fame after a record-setting career at the position, Spiller joined the Clemson coaching staff as an intern in 2020 before being named the RB coach early in 2021.
Defensive Tackles Coach, Nick Eason
A former Clemson team captain, Nick Eason’s coaching career has seen him work in the NFL for the Cleveland Browns, Tennessee Titans, and Cincinnati Bengals.
He served as a defensive analyst at Austin Peay in 2018 and returned to the college game with Auburn in 2021 before joining Clemson’s staff as DT coach and defensive run game coordinator in 2022.
Defensive Ends Coach, Lemanski Hall
Lemanski Hall assumed the position of defensive ends coach on the Clemson coaching staff in 2018. All the Tigers have done since is wreck opposing offensive lines and put players in the NFL. Hall was on the 1992 Alabama national title-winning team alongside head coach Swinney.
Safeties Coach, Mickey Conn
Mickey Conn has been the safeties coach for the Tigers since 2017. However, he’s filled multiple roles for Clemson’s staff, seeing time as special teams coordinator in 2021 before assuming co-defensive coordinator responsibilities. Prior to Clemson, Conn was a highly successful head coach at Grayson (Ga.) High School, leasing the Rams to a 2011 state title.