Tigerville, SC – New North Greenville University head football Coach Carroll McCray has put the finishing touches on his new coaching staff with the hiring of one returning coach and five newcomers with a wide array of NCAA Division I experience.
Coach Brett Hickman, who begins his fourth year at NGU, is the sole returnee from last year’s staff that led North Greenville to an 11-3 mark and a berth in the NCAA Division II national quarterfinals. He will serve as Co-Defensive Coordinator and coach the linebackers next year for McCray.
Rocco Adrian, who played four years at Furman University and has 13 years of experience, joins Hickman as Co-Defensive Coordinator for the Crusaders. Adrian worked with Coach McCray as a coach under Coach Bobby Lamb’s staff. He got his start at Greenville’s Christ Church Episcopal and comes to NGU from the Newport News Apprentice School in Virginia. Adrian will coach the secondary.
Kenneth Ray, a 1995 graduate of Southern Mississippi University where he played with Brett Favre, has been named the Offensive Coordinator for the Crusaders. Ray has 15 years of coaching experience and comes to NGU from Tennessee State University. He has also served on the staffs at Howard, Alabama State, North Carolina A&T, and Samford, where he worked with Coach McCray. He also coached tight ends and tackles at Division I FBS Louisiana-Monroe.
La’Donte Harris, a former Clemson University four-year letterman at wide receiver for the Tigers, joins NGU as its wide receivers and tight ends coach. Harris was the player development coach at Clemson last year and also worked with the Tigers’ wide receivers and running backs. He played for Coach Tommy Bowden and competed in several bowl games. He also has the distinction of catching the first touchdown pass thrown at Clemson by last year’s NGU quarterback Willy Korn in a game against Furman in 2007. Harris earned a sport management degree from Clemson in 2008.
Former University of South Carolina quarterback Brett Nichols has been named the quarterbacks coach for North Greenville. Nichols is a native of Greenville, SC where he attended Hillcrest High School. He played quarterback for Coaches Lou Holtz and Steve Spurrier at Carolina and his position coach at USC was current South Florida Coach Skip Holtz. He comes to NGU from Brevard College where he was the Tornado’s wide receivers coach. He earned a Business degree from Carolina in 2006.
Issac Mooring, a seven year college coaching veteran who played on the defensive line at the University of North Carolina alongside NFL superstar Julius Peppers, is the new Crusader defensive line coach. Mooring comes to NGU from North Carolina Wesleyan where he coaching the line on both sides of the ball. He lettered four years at UNC and also played with Dorman High School graduate Ryan Sims. He helped the Tar Heels win the Peach Bowl over Auburn.
Coach McCray and his new staff are midway through spring football practice and will culminate their first spring together with the NGU spring game Saturday, April 14 at 10:00 a.m. at Younts Stadium.