Mark Elder accepts Eastern Kentucky head coaching job

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Tuesday December 08, 2015

Tennessee tight ends coach / special teams coordinator Mark Elder is the new head coach at Eastern Kentucky, CoachingSearch has confirmed. The news was first reported by ABC36.

Elder has been at Tennessee since 2013 and has produced some of the nation's top special teams units. This year, the Vols had the No. 1 kickoff returner and No. 1 punt returner and were No. 2 in average defensive starting field position.

"I'm excited, blessed and honored for the opportunity to lead one of the most tradition rich programs in college football," Elder said in a release. "It didn't take me long to realize that this is a special place.  Lindsey and I look forward to becoming a part of the Richmond community."

He replaces Dean Hood, who was dismissed after a 55-38 record in eight seasons, including 6-5 this year. 

Other stops in Elder’s coaching career since 2000 include Cincinnati, Central Michigan, Michigan, Iona, Lehigh and Akron.

"One of the things that I really like about Mark is he's a very well-rounded coach," athletic director Steve Lochmueller said.  "He has coached on the defensive side, the offensive side and on special teams.  He has a strong background of success coaching each phase of the game.  He also has coached at a variety of different levels of college football, all the way from Division II to the top of the mountain in college football – the SEC."

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Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to