Getting To Know: Chris Cosh
Coach Cosh Begins His First Season As Defensive Coordinator
Head coaches are at the front and center of every college athletic team. Their assistant coaches are tirelessly working behind the scenes, juggling multiple things at once. What are their stories?
Every Wednesday during the summer, MeanGreenSports.com will be featuring an assistant coach from a North Texas team.
Chris Cosh begins his first season at North Texas as the defensive coordinator. The veteran coach has been all over the country in more than 30 seasons of coaching at the highest level of college football. Cosh has made coaching stops at Kansas State, Maryland, South Carolina, Michigan State and Illinois. Cosh spent the 2014 season as the defensive line coach at the University of Buffalo.
We had a chance to sit down with the Mean Green's new defensive coordinator to learn a little bit more about how he ended up at North Texas, his favorite bowl games and best players he's ever coached.
How did you get into coaching?
"I kind of got forced into it because of an injury. I had an ongoing neck injury that I played with throughout my career in college and it got to the point where I couldn't get another doctor to say I could play. So my senior year I couldn't play anymore. I was kind of disappointed, but Coach (Vince) Dooley was my coach and said I should start coaching. I told him I don't want to coach, but he said I don't care your gonna do it anyways.
So we compromised, and I became a coach."
Tell me about your coaching journey and how you ended up at North Texas?
"I've been all over, and I remember when I met my wife, I told her I was going to be a college coach and we are probably going to have to move quite a bit, and this was a guy talking who grew up on the same block and lived in the same neighborhood all his life, as opposed to my wife who was a military kid who moved around. So she said 'so what, I've moved around I can handle it, you haven't.'
She's really been the one to handle it and has been a great asset for me and my family. It took me to Texas, which I was able to come down here and I had worked with Kevin Patrick at South Florida and he was the first one to let me know that they were interested in me and it was a great fit."
Top three bowl games that you have been to?
"Well if you talk to my wife she will tell you the Cotton Bowl. She loves the Cotton Bowl. I enjoyed it too, but sometimes when you're a coach you don't get to enjoy all the things outside of the game because you're still coaching, but your family gets to be involved in everything.
The Holiday Bowl was another great game and we loved going out to San Diego, and the Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando. If you ask my two young boys at the time, when you're in Orlando and around all the rides and Disney World, they enjoyed that quite a bit. But there is no bad bowl game by the way, all of them are good."
Top five players you have coached?
"Hmmm......That's hard, I've been fortunate to be around a lot of great people and players that have made a great impact on my career.
Dana Howard was probably one of the toughest players I've ever coached at Illinois, he won the Butkus Award. Just a relentless football player, it was a lot of fun to coach him.
Recently is Arthur Brown I had the privilege to coach at Kansas State. He was probably the most humble leader I've ever been around. One of the most talented people and caring players I've ever been around. He's one of those guys that makes people around him better.
Jon Abraham was just a great talent, when I walked in he always had his hand down, but I stood him up and played him at linebacker and he looked at me different, but we were smart enough on short-yardage downs to put him down, but his talent was tremendous.
Eric Barton at Maryland is another guy who had like a third-eye, just an amazing talent who could see things that nobody else could see. And if you're making me pick five, I could go on and on and on. Justin Tuggle, Sam Barrington and so many others."
If someone came up to you and said "I want to be an assistant coach" what is the one thing you would tell them about the job that people outside the sport don't know about?
"Everyone sees what you do on Saturday and those two hours and 50 minutes of a game, but they don't know all the other hours you put in to preparing, the recruiting in the winter, the development in the spring and the summer. Just the time you spend away, you spend most of your time raising and developing other people's children, you sometimes worry spending the time away from home, but when you're able to couple you're family with your job it helps and it's a passion and it's about people and developing people and reach their goals."