March 20, 2012
FORT COLLINS, Colo. -- Colorado State's coaching staff will be at full strength Wednesday when the Rams open their first spring under Jim McElwain.
The Rams' new head coach on Tuesday announced the hiring of Greg Lupfer as defensive line coach. The move also means co-defensive coordinator Marty English will shift his position-coaching responsibility from defensive line to linebackers, a position he'll share with Tim Skipper in the Rams' multiple defense. Co-defensive coordinator Al Simmons continues to coach the secondary.
Now in his 18th season as a coach, Lupfer has 11 years of experience as a defensive coordinator, including the previous three seasons (2009-11) at Division I FCS Cal Poly, in San Luis Obispo, Calif., where he also coached the linebackers and secondary.
At Cal-Poly, Lupfer coached a pair of standout defenders. CB Asa Jackson, a first-team all-conference selection for three straight years, was an FCS All-American who is eligible for the 2012 NFL Draft. He also coached 2010 Great West Defensive Player of the Year Marty Mohamed, who signed with the CFL’s Hamilton TigerCats during the NFL lockout of 2011.
Lupfer spent one season in the Mid-American Conference, coaching the safeties and outside linebackers at Toledo, in 2008.
Before that stop, he coached for 12 seasons (1995-2006) at Portland State, his alma mater, finishing his long stint there as the Vikings’ interim head coach during the winter of 2006-07. At the reins of some of the top-rated defenses in the Big Sky Conference, his units produced a pair of NFL players. Colorado State transfer Adam Hayward was the conference player of the year and a finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award as the top defender in the country. Lupfer also tutored future Carolina Panthers starting linebacker Jordan Senn.
Portland State in 2006 allowed only 12.4 points per game in conference games, easily the top mark in the league, and the team’s 18.4 overall points per game marked the program’s lowest mark since it joined the Division I-AA level in 1996. What’s more, only one other team in the country had more than Portland State’s 31 takeaways. Lupfer’s unit also excelled in 2004, when the Vikings led the league in every significant category, including scoring defense (20.3), rushing defense (110.1) and total defense (346.3). And in 2000, the Vikings knocked off No. 23-ranked Hawaii, a Division I-A team.
From 1995-99, prior to his appointment as Portland State defensive coordinator, Lupfer coached the program’s outside linebackers (1995) and secondary (1996-99), while coordinating special teams from 1996-99. He got his start in coaching as a graduate assistant, working with outside linebackers, for one season at Boise State in 1994. That year, the Broncos advanced to the Division I-AA national championship.
A standout linebacker at Portland State, Lupfer earned All-Western League honors in 1991, leading the team in tackles and helping the Vikings (11-3) to the NCAA Division II semifinals. An injury sidelined him during the 1992 campaign, but he rebounded in 1993 to lead the Vikings back to the postseason. Lupfer finished with 177 career tackles at PSU, after beginning his playing days at Walla Walla Community College, near his hometown of Dayton, Wash.
A 1994 graduate of Portland State, Lupfer owns a degree in social science. He and his wife, Tina, have three children, Taylor (11), Colby (9) and Demi (1).
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