A couple of days after officially losing its defensive coordinator to West Virginia, Arkansas State has filled the vacancy.
The Sun Belt school announced via a press release that head coach Gus Malzahn has tabbed Arkansas native John Thompson as his coordinator. Thompson will replace Keith Patterson, who was hired by Malzahn in early January but left less the two months later for a spot on the Mountaineers’ defensive staff.
“We are excited to add another coach to our staff who has strong ties to the state of Arkansas,” said Malzahn in a statement. “Coach Thompson is not only well respected for the great success he’s enjoyed at the highest level of college football, but also as a person of tremendous character. We are happy to welcome him to our Arkansas State family.”
Thompson has spent the past two seasons as coordinator/assistant head coach for scheduling and strategic planning — seriously, that’s what the release stated — at Georgia State. Prior to that, Thompson served as coordinator or co-coordinator at South Carolina (2005), Florida (2002) and Arkansas (2001-02).
He was also the head coach at East Carolina from 2003-04.