Jan. 12, 2011
WACO, Texas - Baylor has hired two new defensive coaches, Jim Gush and Carlton Buckels, head coach Art Briles announced Wednesday.
Gush is a 30-year coaching veteran who comes to Baylor from Stony Brook after two seasons as assistant head coach for defense. Buckels has coached 12 collegiate seasons, the last two at North Texas.
"Both of these coaches have a wealth of experience and knowledge," Briles said. "They both have extensive experience with coach (Phil) Bennett and we're excited about what they can bring to the table on the defensive side of the ball to help us continue our climb."
The new defensive staff being put together by Briles and incoming coordinator Phil Bennett will retain Chris Achuff, who coaches the Baylor defensive line, as well as associate head coach Brian Norwood (secondary). Departing are Larry Hoefer, Kim McCloud and Theo Young.
Gush, who will coach linebackers at Baylor, coached alongside Bennett at SMU, Kansas State and Iowa State. As defensive coordinator at Stony Brook, his 2010 defense led the Big South in interceptions (17) and turnovers forced (26). In 2009, Stony Brook led the Big South in scoring defense, allowing a conference-low 15 touchdowns in six games.
Prior to Stony Brook, Gush spent six seasons (2002-07) as SMU's defensive coordinator. The Mustangs led Conference-USA and ranked 24th nationally against the run in 2006 under Gush. He coached from 1999 to 2001 at K-State, where the Wildcats ranked among the top four in the nation in total defense all three seasons and made three bowl appearances with a 28-10 combined record.
Prior to Kansas State, Gush spent 12 seasons at Garden City Community College in Kansas, three as head coach and nine as defensive coordinator. He compiled a 29-7 win-loss record in three seasons as head coach and led Garden City to top 10 finishes each year - No. 7 (10-2) in 1996, No. 4 (10-2) in 1997 and No. 7 (9-3) in 1998. In 1997 Gush led Garden City to a Jayhawk Conference championship and a berth in the Red River Bowl, the national championship game. His 1996 squad played in the Real Dairy Bowl and his 1998 team won the Valley of the Sun Bowl.
Gush began his collegiate coaching career at Albany in 1983 where he coached defensive backs. He moved to Iowa State in 1984 as a graduate assistant on Bennett's defensive staff before moving to Garden City. He is a 1981 graduate of Bucknell and was a four-year starter for the Bison. He earned his Master's degree from Iowa State in 1986. He and his wife Anne have two children, Stephanie and Jordan.
Buckles will assist associate head coach Brian Norwood in coaching the Baylor secondary. He comes to Waco from North Texas, where he coached cornerbacks in 2009 and 2010. In 2009, Buckels' cornerbacks helped UNT lead the Sun Belt Conference in passing defense (217 ypg).
From 2005 to 2007, Buckels coached defensive backs at New Mexico State. Prior to NMSU, Buckels served as recruiting coordinator and secondary coach at Southeastern Louisiana. He spent two seasons (2001 and 2002) as an assistant at Delta State.
Buckels got his start in collegiate coaching at his alma mater, LSU, where he served as graduate assistant under Nick Saban and Gerry DiNardo and earned his Master's degree in 2001. Buckels played at LSU under then-Tiger assistant head coach Bennett. He lettered four years at LSU (1989-92) serving as team captain and earning special teams MVP honors in 1991. He tallied six career interceptions and returned one for a touchdown.
After LSU Buckels had stints in professional football with the CFL's Baltimore Colts and the semi-pro Lousiana Bayou Thunder before coaching and teaching high school in Louisiana.