University of South Carolina head football coach Will Muschamp has added a few more pieces to his coaching staff, he announced today. Bryan McClendon has been named co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach; Pat Washington has been selected as the tight ends coach; and Jamie Speronis has been retained as Associate Athletics Director – Football Operations.
Bryan McClendon comes to Columbia following a stint at his alma mater, the University of Georgia. A former wide receiver at UGA, McClendon held several titles during the 2015 regular season, including wide receivers coach, assistant head coach and passing game coordinator. He was named interim head coach of the Bulldogs on Dec. 3, 2015, and will serve in that capacity through Georgia’s appearance in the TaxSlayer Bowl. From 2009-2014, he was the Bulldogs’ running backs coach. McClendon also served as recruiting coordinator in 2014-15.
“Bryan is an up-and-comer in the coaching profession,” said Muschamp. “It says a lot about his abilities as a coach to be named the interim head coach for the Bulldogs in their bowl game.”
Since joining the full time staff, Georgia teams won 63 games and two SEC Eastern Division titles. McClendon has been part of an offensive staff that led Georgia to the 2014 SEC scoring offense title (41.3 ppg) and three consecutive record-setting seasons: Total Yards in a Season (6,547 in 2012, 6,294 in 2013, 5,964 in 2014); Average Yards Per Game (467.64 in ‘12, 484.2 in ‘13, 458.8 in ‘14); and Most TDs in a Season (72 in 2012, 58 in ‘13, 70 in ‘14).
He has coached some of the country’s best tailbacks including Todd Gurley (2015 1st round draft choice of the St. Louis Rams), 2014 Freshman All-American Nick Chubb, and 2011 SEC Freshman of the Year Isaiah Crowell.
McClendon was a four-year letterman with the Bulldogs (2002-05) and his senior class won 44 games–most by any class in Georgia history. During his tenure, the Bulldogs won three Southeastern Conference Eastern Division titles (2002, ‘03, ‘05), two SEC championships (2002, ‘05), and played in four bowl games (2003 Nokia Sugar, ‘04 Capital One, ‘05 Outback, ‘06 Nokia Sugar), winning three of them.
McClendon’s career blossomed in 2005, when the Bulldogs won the SEC championship. The Atlanta, Ga., native caught 35 passes with six going for touchdowns. He caught the game-winning TD pass in the closing minutes against Georgia Tech, and then blocked a punt in the SEC Championship game, which led to the Bulldogs’ third TD in the 34-14 victory over LSU.
Following his Georgia career, McClendon signed a free agent contract with the NFL’s Chicago Bears. After one summer with the Bears, he returned to Georgia as a graduate assistant from 2007-08.
Born Dec. 28, 1983, McClendon graduated from Georgia in December 2005, with a degree in Recreation and Leisure Studies. He is the son of former Georgia tailback Willie McClendon, 1978 SEC Player of the Year and running back for the Chicago Bears. Bryan is married to the former Amber Arnold of Atlanta, Ga. They have two children, Bryan and Brooke.
Pat Washington, a 28-year collegiate coaching veteran, has 18 years of experience under his belt on four different SEC staffs, including an 11-year stint as wide receivers coach at Tennessee (1995-2005), which included an undefeated 1998 season and a national championship for the Volunteers. He comes to South Carolina from the University of Missouri, where he has served as the Tigers’ receiving coach since 2013.
“Pat brings a wealth of experience in the SEC,” said Muschamp. “He will bring a lot of intangibles to our coaching staff.”
Under Washington’s tutelage, senior receiver Bud Sasser was named 1st-team All-SEC in 2014 following an outstanding season which included team-bests in receptions (77), receiving yards (1,003) and receiving touchdowns (12). Sasser became Mizzou’s first first-team all-conference wide receiver since 2009.
Mizzou’s wideouts enjoyed a banner year in 2013, and played a critical role as the Tigers became one of the most improved offensive attacks in the nation. Leading the way was Dorial Green-Beckham, who earned Second-Team All-SEC honors by the Associated Press after catching 59 passes for 883 yards and 12 touchdowns – the latter of which tied for most in the SEC in 2013. Washington’s receivers solid downfield blocking also helped spring the Tiger ground game for a 3,000-yard season and a national rushing ranking of 16th as part of MU’s 12-2 campaign.
Washington, 50, has enjoyed success throughout his career, as he’s coached on teams that have reached bowl games 18 times. Tennessee posted a sterling 105-31 record during his tenure that featured 10 bowl appearances – including three Citrus Bowls, two Fiesta, Peach and Cotton Bowls, and one Orange Bowl. The Volunteers also reached the SEC Championship Game four times with Washington on staff. A win in the 1998 SEC title game vaulted UT to the 1999 Fiesta Bowl, where the Vols downed Florida State, 23-16, to cap an undefeated season and a national championship.
During his tenure at Tennessee, Washington developed a line of standout receivers, including Peerless Price, Donte Stallworth, Joey Kent, Marcus Nash, Robert Meachem and Cedrick Wilson, among others. Nash, Stallworth and Meachem were National Football League first-round draft picks, and all six enjoyed NFL careers.
Washington’s coaching career began at Auburn, where he served his alma mater as a graduate assistant coach from 1987-88. After the Tigers reached bowl games both years, Washington landed his first full-time position in the industry, as the receivers coach at Louisiana-Lafayette (1989-91), and that was followed by a two-year stop at TCU (1992-93) as receivers coach. He spent one year at Baylor (1994) as running backs coach, and the Bears reached the 1994 Alamo Bowl during his time there, before he left to join Tennessee the following year.
Following his time at UT, Washington coached receivers at Kansas State in 2006, helping the Wildcats to a berth in the Texas Bowl. Two of his wideouts, Jordy Nelson and Yamon Figurs, went on to play in the NFL.
Washington returned to the SEC next, as the receivers coach at Mississippi State from 2007-08. The Bulldogs broke a six-year postseason drought during his time there, as MSU won the 2007 AutoZone Liberty Bowl. From 2009-11, Washington coached running backs at Southern Mississippi, and his backfield played an integral role in Southern Miss’ Conference USA Championship in 2011. He spent the 2012 season at Kentucky as wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator.
A native of Mobile, Ala., Washington played quarterback at Auburn from 1982-85, with the Tigers reaching bowl games all four years. He was the starter his final two seasons, and guided Auburn to a combined 17-8 record in those years and to 1984 Liberty Bowl and 1986 Cotton Bowl appearances. His backfield mate, Bo Jackson, won the Heisman Trophy in 1985.
Washington earned a management degree from Auburn in 1987. He and his wife, Claudette, are the parents of sons Tyson and Justin.
Jamie Speronis has spent the past 11 seasons overseeing South Carolina’s football operations. He served as the Director – Football Operations for seven years before being promoted to Associate Athletics Director/Football Operations on March 1, 2012.
Speronis manages the administration and day-to-day operations of the football program. In this capacity, he oversees the logistics relating to the spring, preseason and postseason practices. He directs the walk-on program, works with NFL personnel and serves as the liaison to the compliance office and several other athletics and university departments. In addition, Speronis coordinates team travel arrangements and oversees the football budget.
“Jamie did a great job with Coach (Steve) Spurrier,” said Coach Mushchamp. “I’m looking forward to working with him with South Carolina Football.”
Speronis is well regarded among his peers. He was named to the executive committee of the AFCA Football Operations in 2006. Speronis was also named one of three finalists for national Director of Football Operations honors in 2009 as selected by FootballScoop.com. In addition, Speronis served as the President of the AFCA Football Operations National Executive Committee in 2014. He currently is part of the National Championship Advisory Group for the College Football Playoffs.
Speronis has significant experience in the position, as he was the Director of Football Administration at the University of Florida from 1996-2002 and served as the Director of Football Operations for the Washington Redskins from 2002-04.
A 1985 graduate from Florida with a bachelor of science degree in physical education, Speronis earned a master of exercise and sports sciences in sport administration from UF in 1989. A member of the American Football Coaches Association, Speronis started his career in football as a student assistant in the strength and conditioning program at Florida from 1982-88. He served as a graduate assistant from 1988-92 and then moved on to a senior administrative assistant position from 1992-95.
Speronis and his wife, Kristy, have two sons, Conner and Bryson.