Dave Harper Named Ferrum Football Coach
Ferrum College Names Dave Harper New Football Coach
Longtime offensive coordinator tapped after national search.
Ferrum, Va. (December 9, 2010) – Ferrum College Director of Athletics Abe Naff has announced that Dave Harper has
been named Head Football Coach. Harper succeeds Dave Davis, who retired at the end
of the 2010 season.
Harper has been a member of the Ferrum coaching staff for 18 years, where he has served
as offensive coordinator since 1999. Prior to that, he served as defensive coordinator
from 1993-1998. Harper came to Ferrum after a two-year stint as an assistant coach
at Davidson College.
Ferrum President Jennifer Braaten expressed special thanks to the search committee.
“The work of the committee during this intensive nationwide search was extremely
important for Ferrum. We are confident that our historic football legacy will continue
and flourish under Dave Harper’s proven leadership and his vision for future NCAA
Division III championships,” said Braaten.
The committee, comprised of faculty, staff, Board of Trustees and alumni members,
considered over 100 applications for the position.
Supporters of the Ferrum football program, including many former students, sent dozens
of letters and e-mails to the school on Harper’s behalf. He also enjoys a strong
working relationship with members of the athletic department. “Dave was an excellent
candidate right from the beginning,” said Naff, also a member of the search committee.
“We needed to go through the process and see who else was out there, and we feel strongly
that we selected the best candidate.”
Harper has enjoyed a great deal of success overseeing the offense. Ferrum’s rushing
offense has finished 12th or higher in the nation in 10 of his 12 seasons as offensive
coordinator. Ferrum's 2005 offense broke school records for rushing yards in a season
(4,332) points in a season (439) and single-game yards (686).
Harper, who played football at Ferrum from 1986-89 becomes just the sixth head football
coach at Ferrum in the 56-year history of the program. The number 56 is significant
to Harper, having twice earned All-America honors at linebacker while wearing number
56 on his jersey. His jersey is one of only two to have been retired by the College.
“I’m extremely excited about becoming Ferrum’s new head coach,” said Harper. “I plan
to use this opportunity to lead the next generation of Ferrum College student-athletes
in the right direction, so that they too can understand what wearing a black helmet
at this great institution means to many alumni. I’d also would like to thank the
alumni, faculty, staff and friends who showed their support to my family and me throughout
the search process.“
Harper and his wife Beth reside in Ferrum with their two sons, Max and Sam. He will
begin his work as head football coach immediately.