Jennings worked as Houston's safeties coach during the 2005 and 2006 seasons, helping the Cougars to back-to-back bowl appearances (2005 Fort Worth Bowl and 2006 Liberty Bowl) and the 2006 Conference USA championship. In 2006, Cougars' free safety Will Gulley earned Conference USA Defensive Player of the Year honors and freshman safety Brandon Brinkley was named to the league's all-freshman honor squad.
In his first season at Houston, Jennings saw one of his pupils, Rocky Schwartz, earn Conference USA third-team all-league honors and freshman Kenneth Fontennette was an honorable mention Sporting News Freshman All-America pick.
Prior to his two-year stint at Houston, Jennings spent two seasons (2003 and 2004) as the defensive backs coach at Louisiana-Lafayette, where he helped the Ragin' Cajuns to a No. 11 national ranking in pass defense. Three players Jennings tutored while with the Cajuns were Antwan Spann (currently with the New England Patriots), C.C. Brown (currently with the Houston Texans) and Mike Adams (currently with the Arizona Cardinals).
Before going to ULL, he worked two years (2001 and 2002) as secondary coach and recruiting coordinator at Sam Houston State. He helped the Bearkats to a share of the 2001 Southland Conference championship and the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Division I-AA Playoffs. At SHSU, Jennings coached All-American and Buck Buchanan Award finalist Keith Davis, who just completed his fourth season with the Dallas Cowboys.
Jennings also coached the secondary at Southern Arkansas (Feb. 2000-March 2001), Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa (March 1999-Feb. 2000) and Morehouse College in Atlanta (Jan. 1998-Feb. 1999). At SAU, Jennings mentored the Seattle Seahawks starting left cornerback, Jordan Babineaux, while at Morningside he coached Matt Walker, a first-team All-America safety.
A four-year letterwinner as a defensive lineman and special teams standout at North Texas from 1992 through 1995, Jennings was a member of the Mean Green's 1994 Southland Conference championship team and the school's first NCAA Division I-A entry in 1995. He began his coaching career first as a student assistant (1996) and then as a graduate assistant (1997) at North Texas before moving on to Morehouse.
The 1996 North Texas graduate (bachelor's of science in kinesiology) and his wife Belinda, have two children, son Kirby and daughter Kenzie. He graduated from Waco's La Vega High School in 1992.
The Jennings File
Birthdate: Nov. 3, 1973, in Waco, Texas
High School: La Vega High School, Waco, Texas
Alma Mater: North Texas, 1996
Collegiate Playing Experience: North Texas, defensive lineman, 1992-95
Children: Kirby and Kenzie
1996-97: North Texas, graduate assistant
1998: Morehouse College, secondary
1999: Morningside College, secondary
2000: Southern Arkansas, secondary
2001-02: Sam Houston State, secondary and recruiting coordinator
2003-04: Louisiana-Lafayette, secondary
2005-06: Houston, safeties
2007: Baylor, cornerbacks
1994: NCAA Division I-AA Playoffs (player)
2001: NCAA Division I-AA Playoffs (coach)
2005: Fort Worth Bowl (coach)
2006: Liberty Bowl (coach)
Did You Know?
Clay Jennings played defensive line and special teams at North Texas from 1992-95. He was a member of the Mean Green's 1994 Southland Conference championship team and their first Division I-A team a year later.