Jay Mills #100
Position: Head Coach Ht.:
Previous School: Western Washington, '84
Eligibility: 3 Major: 7119
Jay Mills begins his 10th year at the helm of the CSU program, seeking to return the program to contender status after back-to-back losing seasons.
Hit hard by injuries each of the last two years, Mills has remained steadfast in his belief that CSU can again be one of the top programs in the Big South. It was not that long ago when CSU sat at or near the top of the league standings, as the Bucs claimed the league crown in 2005, and compiled a 37-30 overall record between 2005 and 2010 while testing itself against a schedule which featured more FBS opponents than any other school in the Big South.
Mills guided the program to its first-ever Big South title in 2005 in only his third season, as CSU banded together after the tragic death of wide receiver Eddie Gadson prior to the season. The Bucs stood at 2-4 midway through the campaign, before ending the season on a five-game winning streak which was capped off by a dramatic 34-27 come-from-behind victory over rival Coastal Carolina. Following the year, Mill was selected as Big South Coach of the Year, CSU quarterback Collin Drafts was named Big South Offensive Player of the Year, linebacker Jada Ross was tabbed as Big South Defensive Player of the Year, and defensive lineman Adam DeGraffenreid earned distinction as Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
CSU then showed the ability to live up to heightened expectations in 2006, winning its first nine games en route to posting the nation's second-longest winning streak at 14 games. The 2006 team was nationally-ranked for the first time in school history, and finished with a school-record 9 wins.
Honored with the All-American Football Foundationís Lifetime Achievement Award in 2002, Mills was named the 2005 Big South Conference Coach of the Year, and the 2005 Buccaneers were named the "Team of the Year" by collegesports.com.
Mills is the winningest coach in CSU history and has led CSU to six winning or .500 records in his nine years at the helm. Included in that stretch was a 7-5 mark in 2008 and a 6-5 finish in 2009, as the Bucs rebounded from a 2-5 start to post triumphs over VMI, Presbyterian, Edward Waters, and a 24-0 shutout of Coastal Carolina.
Despite struggling in 2011, the Bucs continued to excel in the passing game under Millsí watch, as sophomore wide receiver Nathan Perera earned First Team All-Big South honors. Perera hauled in 43 catches for 709 yards, and finished second in the conference in receiving yards per game and receptions per game. Perera was particularly good against Stony Brook, when he made 10 catches for 232 yards, coming up just three yards shy of the Big South single-game mark, and nine yards short of CSUís single-game record. On the defensive side of the ball, Chris Kuzdale and Charles James excelled in the second as each was named to the all-conference first team. Junior linebacker Mike Chocholousek, meanwhile, was named to all-conference second team.
During his tenure at CSU, the Buccaneers have literally rewritten the record books offensively. Under his direction, CSU quarterback Collin Drafts became the schoolís all-time leading passer and all-time leader in total offense in only three seasons.
Mills is recognized nationally as a top offensive mind, having operated highly successful passing offenses at Harvard and Boise State University prior to becoming CSUís head coach.
Mills served as the Crimsonís quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator for seven seasons, leading the school to high national rankings for total offense and establishing numerous school records.
In 2001, Harvard committed the fewest turnovers of any Division I-AA school and ranked 11th nationally in total offense. In 2000, Harvard set school records for passing yards (2,885) and total yards (4,679). During those two seasons, eight offensive players earned All Ivy League honors.
After serving three seasons as a graduate assistant at Notre Dame, one year under former head coach Lou Holtz, Mills was named quarterbacks and passing game coordinator at Boise State. Mills helped guide Boise State to a pair of NCAA Division I-AA playoff appearances, including a berth in the national semifinal game in 1990. Boise State was ranked second nationally in total offense in 1987.
Millsí experience as a head coach came at the University of Minnesota Morris, where he helped lead the program from NAIA status to NCAA Division II status in 1993.
Mills and his wife, Kimberly, reside in Goose Creek and are the parents of six children; Stacey Jo (28), Josh (24), Jared (22), Chris (21), Derek (20) and David (15), and on July 12, 2008, the Mills added son-in-law Ryan Tiť to the family.