(Courtesy: Simpson Athletics)
INDIANOLA, Iowa – Simpson College Director of Athletics Brian Niemuth announced today the hiring of Storm alumnus Matt Jeter as the next head coach of the Simpson football team. Jeter comes to Simpson from the University of Central Missouri, where he served as defensive coordinator.
“We are excited to welcome Matt Jeter back to Simpson as our new head football coach,” Niemuth said. “He is an outstanding coach, a strong leader and a proven recruiter. He experienced great success during his playing career at Simpson and has the vision to return the program back to that level. His passion for the College, the game of football and the development of his student-athletes is evident in everything he does. We are excited to start the next chapter of Simpson football and Coach Jeter is the man to lead us forward.”
Jeter becomes the 33rd head coach in program history following a six-year stint at NCAA Division II Central Missouri. Jeter started out as the special teams coordinator and defensive backs coach for the Warrensburg, Mo. institution before taking over as the defensive coordinator from 2011-15. Jeter was a two-year starter at cornerback for the Simpson football team from 1996-97, helping the Storm to a record of 22-2 and two trips to the NCAA Division III Playoffs.
“I couldn’t be more excited to accept the position of head football coach at Simpson College,” Jeter said. “As a former player and team captain at Simpson, my life was transformed in every way – academically, athletically and socially. I feel well-prepared for this new position and the challenges and opportunities that are ahead. My vision is to align our program with Brian Niemuth’s plan for the entire department, to place the well-being of our student-athletes as the focal point, to remain in full compliance with all NCAA standards and to expect comprehensive excellence in all we do.”
Jeter helped Central Missouri to a 47-22 mark in his six seasons on staff, including three postseason appearances. The Mules won at least six games each season during Jeter’s tenure, highlighted by a record-setting 11-win season in 2010 when the Mules finished 11-3 and advanced to the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Division II Playoffs. Central Missouri posted eight-win campaigns in 2011, 2014 and 2015, appearing in the Kanza Bowl in 2011 and winning the Texarkana Bowl in 2014. The Mules went 8-3 last fall, narrowly missing a berth in the postseason.
Jeter’s defenses consistently ranked among the best in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association. The Mules were third in total defense in 2015 (365.8 ypg), fifth in 2013 (391.6 ypg) and fourth in 2012 (365.8). His units had a knack for creating turnovers, generating 59 in the last two seasons, including a MIAA-leading 30 in 2014. In five years as defensive coordinator, Jeter’s teams allowed less than 23 points per game while 16 defensive players earned all-MIAA honors.
Prior to joining the staff at Central Missouri, Jeter spent eight years as an assistant at NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision member Drake University. He served as the defensive backs coach and recruiting coordinator for the Bulldogs, helping Drake win the Pioneer Football League title in 2004. He was the defensive coordinator in 2007, piloting a unit that led the PFL in redzone scoring and ranked fourth in the nation with 31 forced turnovers. Jeter helped the Bulldogs to six consecutive winning seasons from 2004-09, including a 10-2 mark in 2004, a 9-2 record in 2006 and an 8-3 mark in 2009.
Jeter started at cornerback for head coach Jim Williams in 1996 and 1997, the most successful two-year period Simpson football history. The Storm won back-to-back Iowa Conference titles, going 10-1 in 1996 in 12-1 in 1997. Jeter was a team captain on the 1997 team that set a school record for wins in a season and made an appearance in the national semifinals. He also earned two letters as a member of the track and field team.
He transferred to Simpson from Iowa Central Community College, where he was a first team all-region selection and team captain as a sophomore in 1995.
Jeter earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education from Simpson in 1998. He and his wife, Kimberly, have two sons: Jordan and Jayden.
Matt Jeter File
Hometown: Des Moines, Iowa (Roosevelt HS)
DOB: March 23, 1975
Family: Wife, Kimberly; Sons, Jordan (10) and Jayden (8)
Education: B.A., Simpson, 1998; A.A., Iowa Central, 1995
Playing Experience: Simpson [1996-97]; Iowa Central CC [1994-95]
2016 Simpson, Head Coach
2011-2015 Central Missouri, Defensive Coordinator
2010 Central Missouri, Special Teams Coordinator/Defensive Backs
2002-2009 Drake, Defensive Backs/Recruiting Coordinator*
1998 Des Moines Lincoln HS, Assistant Coach
*Defensive Coordinator in 2007