Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy announced the hiring of two coaches today. Dan Hammerschmidt, who has experience coaching in all three phases of the game, will serve as a defensive coach and Eric Wolford, who served as head coach at Youngstown State from 2010-14, will serve as an offensive coach.
Both hires are contingent upon completion of background checks.
“Dan brings experience and maturity to our defensive staff and I'm excited about what he brings to the table for our defensive backs,” Gundy said. “The same as Dan, Eric is a very experienced and mature coach. Both of them have recruiting ties in the state of Texas and we are looking forward to their contributions to Oklahoma State.”
Gundy also announced today that Jason Ray will not return. “We appreciate Jason's contribution to our team and wish him well moving forward,” Gundy said.
A closer look at the two new coaches:
29 years of coaching experience | Colorado State, 1987
A 29-year coaching veteran who comes to OSU after coaching running backs at the University of Houston in 2014, Dan Hammerschmidt played safety at Colorado State from 1982-85 before breaking into the coaching ranks as a student assistant with the Rams in 1986. He served as a graduate assistant at TCU in 1987 before earning his first full-time appointment at Duke, where he coached outside linebackers, special teams and the secondary from 1988-94. He helped the Blue Devils to a pair of bowl appearances in 1989 and 1994.
He coached the secondary at Virginia Military Institute in 1995 before returning to his alma mater, where he coached the Colorado State receivers from 1996-2000. He moved into the role of co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach and served in that capacity from 2001-07. With Hammerschmidt on staff, CSU appeared in seven bowl games and quarterback Bradlee Van Pelt earned Mountain West Conference Offensive Player of the Year accolades in 2002 and 2003. Eight of Hammerschmidt's pupils at CSU earned all-conference accolades.
He coached wide receivers at Rice in 2008, and his one year with the Owls resulted in Jarrett Dillard becoming the first Owl to earn All-America honors from the Football Writers Association of America since 1958. Buoyed by the 20 touchdown receptions he made with Hammerschmidt as his position coach, Dillard finished his career as the NCAA's all-time leader with 59 career touchdown receptions.
From there, Hammerschmidt served as assistant head coach and mentored the receivers and tight ends at Wyoming in 2009, then returned to Fort Collins, where he was passing game coordinator and receivers coach at Colorado State from 2010-11.
He moved on to the NFL, where he was an offensive assistant with the Houston Texans from 2012-13. With Hammerschmidt on staff, the Texans set a franchise record with 26.0 points per game in 2012 as seven offensive players earned Pro Bowl invites. Arian Foster led the NFL with 17 touchdowns and ranked second in the AFC with 1,424 yards rushing while receiver Andre Johnson had 1,598 yards receiving and four touchdowns. Quarterback Matt Schaub earned Pro Bowl honors as did three offensive linemen: left tackle Duane Brown, left guard Wade Smith and center Chris Myers.
Hammerschmidt returned to the college ranks in 2014 as running backs coach at the University of Houston. During his one season, the Cougars ranked second in American Athletic Conference in rushing offense with 183.8 yards per game and running back Kenneth Farrow led the league with 20 rushing touchdowns, ranked second with 1,037 rushing yards and was among the top 40 players in the nation by averaging 5.58 yards per carry.
21 years of coaching experience | Kansas State, 1994
Eric Wolford joins the OSU staff after serving as head coach at Youngstown State from 2010-14. During his time there, the Penguins compiled a 31-26 overall record, highlighted by an 8-4 record in 2013.
He led Youngstown State to a 2012 victory over Pittsburgh and a 2011 road win over top-ranked North Dakota State. His 2011 squad set more than 30 team and game individual and season school records and the offense ranked among the top 15 in the Football Championship Subdivision in 13 different categories. Playing an 11-game regular season, the Penguins were the only team in the FCS to rush and pass for more than 2,500 yards.
After starting his career as a graduate assistant for Bill Snyder at Kansas State in 1994, Wolford made full-time coaching stops at Emporia State, South Florida, Houston, North Texas, Arizona, Illinois and South Carolina before taking the head coach position at Youngstown State.
His first full-time job was as the offensive line and strength coach at Emporia State in 1995. He moved to Tampa to help start up the program at South Florida from 1996-99, where he coached the Bulls' offensive line. In 1996, the team practiced, but did not compete.
He moved on to the University of Houston, where he coached all three phases from 2000-02, serving as tackles and tight ends coach in 2000, running backs and special teams coach in 2001 and defensive line coach in 2002.
In 2003, he moved on to North Texas, where he served as offensive line coach for a Mean Green squad that won nine games and featured the Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year, Patrick Cobbs.
From 2004-06, he coached the offensive line at Arizona before moving on to Illinois, where he enjoyed a good deal of success as run game coordinator and offensive line coach from 2007-08. In 2007, the Illini led the Big Ten in rushing and in 2008, the Illini led the Big Ten in passing.
The 2007 Illini squad played in the Rose Bowl and Wolford's offensive line paved the way for a rushing attack that amassed 3,338 yards on the ground – a school record. Running back Rashard Mendenhall broke school records for rushing yards, rushing touchdowns and total scores in a season that year en route to earning Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honors. In 2008, Wolford's offensive line led the way for an Illinois offense that ranked second in the Big Ten with 438.8 yards per game and amassed over 5,000 yards of offense for the second consecutive season.
He left Champaign to join Steve Spurrier's staff at South Carolina in 2009, where he served as run game coordinator and offensive line coach during his lone season in Columbia before getting the call to serve as head coach at Youngstown State.
A four-year starter as an offensive lineman during his playing days at Kansas State, Wolford was part of Bill Snyder's first recruiting class.
He and his wife, Melinda, have a son, Stone, and a daughter, Marlee.