D-Line Coach Wilson Joining OU Football Staff
Courtesy Oklahoma Sports Information Office
NORMAN, Okla. - Chris Wilson, formerly a linebacker and two-time team captain for Oklahoma and most recently an assistant coach at Colorado, is joining the OU football staff as defensive ends coach. Sooner head coach Bob Stoops made the announcement today.
Wilson joins Cale Gundy and Jackie Shipp as former Sooner players on this coaching staff.
"Chris has been a tremendous asset to the University of Colorado and its football program," Colorado head coach Gary Barnett said. "The University of Oklahoma is getting a tremendous father, coach and person. We wish him well, and hope to see him in the (Big 12) championship game."
"Being in the same conference with Chris, we recognize the job he has done in coaching Colorado's defensive ends and defensive linemen over the last five years," said OU head coach Bob Stoops. "That program has been in the Big 12 title game in three of the last four years and the staff there has done very good work in keeping the team at a high level.
"Obviously, Chris has a strong and excellent background at Oklahoma and that makes us especially excited to be bringing him back."
The return to Norman made Wilson think back to his high school days.
"As a player out of high school there was no other college that I wanted to attend than Oklahoma," he said. "Now, there is no other college I'd rather coach. I've come full circle. I feel very fortunate that I've had the opportunity to go out and see different parts of the world and now I am back at OU. And I realize how special that place is."
Wilson's return also reunites him with several long-time acquaintances.
"I have worked with Kevin (Sumlin), I played with Cale (Gundy) and have been friends with Jackie (Shipp) for a long time so I have good familiarity with several on that staff, and of course we see them all of the time on the recruiting trail," Wilson said. "I have cheered for them every game but one.
"I know I will be coaching along side some very good coaches and I know the talent level is there. I am excited to coach those guys. We'll have some young players at defensive end, but I recruiting several of them so I know their quality. It will be my job to limit their youthful mistakes."
Wilson just finished his fifth year at CU, after joining the Buffalo staff as defensive line coach on May 26, 2000. He also coached CU's field goal and PAT defensive unit on special teams. Stoops said that Wilson will have special teams duties at Oklahoma as well.
Wilson, 36, went to CU from Army, where he had joined the Cadet staff in January, 2000, as defensive line coach under Todd Berry. Wilson had spent the 1998 and 1999 seasons with Berry at Illinois State. Those Redbird teams advanced to the NCAA I-AA semifinals in 1999, finishing with an 11-3 record and a 6-0 league mark to win the Gateway Conference title. It marked the first and only time that ISU had ever won the Gateway title. Those post-season appearances also stand as the only in school history.
A four-year letterman at linebacker for Oklahoma between 1988-91, he recorded 311 tackles, a number that still stands as at No. 18 in Sooner history, and No. 11 among linebackers. He had 104 tackles as a sophomore, 86 as a junior, despite missing two-plus games to injury, and posted 97 as a senior. He was a preseason nominee for the '91 Butkus Award. Wilson earned second-team All-Big Eight honors three times and was a third-team All-America selection as a junior by the Football News. The Chicago Bears drafted him in the 12th round in 1992.
Wilson played for both Barry Switzer and Gary Gibbs at Oklahoma, and played in three bowl games.
Wilson entered the coaching ranks in 1993 as a graduate assistant at Indiana State, and was then hired by the Sycamores full-time in the spring of 1994 to tutor the inside linebackers. He moved to Northern Illinois in 1995, coaching the outside linebackers and coordinating the team's nickel package. He was the defensive coordinator and line coach for Northeastern Oklahoma A & M in 1996, and then returned to Indiana State for the 1997 season as outside linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator before joining Berry at Illinois State and then Army.
He has also had three minority internships with NFL teams, Dallas (1995), Arizona (1997) and Miami (1998).
A two-time team captain, Wilson graduated from OU with a degree in communications in 1992.
Wilson was born January 8, 1969 in Dallas, Texas, and graduated from Richardson (Texas) High School, where he lettered in football and track. He is married to the former Tina Brown, a schoolteacher, and they have two children, son Caleb (8) and daughter Colby (4). His hobbies include collecting old music, particularly jazz.