Napier adds LB coach, special teams coordinator to Cajuns staff

Special to the Advertiser

Cajuns football head coach Billy Napier announced the addition of Matt Powledge to his staff as outside linebackers coach and special teams coordinator.

Billy Napier selected as the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns 26th Head Coach in Louisiana football history. Monday, Dec. 18, 2017.

Powledge served as tight ends coach and special teams coordinator for ULM from 2016-17. ULM ranked second in the Sun Belt Conference in 2017 in kickoff returns, averaging 25.2 yards per return.

“I’m extremely excited to announce a big addition to our staff in Matt Powledge,” Napier said. “Matt is a quality coach and has had success as a student-athlete and coach. His recruiting experience and relationships will be a great fit for our plan. His passion for and production as a Special Teams Coordinator speaks for itself. It’s a great day for the University of Louisiana!”

Meet the staff: 

Offensive Coordinator | Defensive Coordinator | Conditioning coach | Director of football operations | Assistant coach, offense | Assistant coach, safeties | Assistant coach, running backs | Assistant coach, wide receivers/recruiting 

The News-Star in Monroe reported Powledge's move Wednesday with the news of fellow ULM assistant Tim Leger also being hired to Napier's staff.

Prior to ULM, Powledge spent two seasons at Sam Houston State where he led his alma mater to arguably its best special teams season of all-time. The Bearkats ranked atop the Southland Conference in four different categories (punt return yards, blocked kicks, special teams scores and PAT percentage). The squad was also one of six teams in the NCAA to block two-plus punts and return two or more for touchdowns.

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Powledge also helped lead the Bearkat offense to a No. 1 ranking in the country as well as top-five finishes in scoring offense and rushing.

In 2013, Powledge served as a graduate assistant at Kentucky. While with the Wildcats, Powledge assisted the special teams coordinator with weekly planning and was in charge of film input, breakdowns of weekly opponents and compiling scouting reports among other things.

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Powledge's previous two stops were in the Southland Conference. He was a member of the Northwestern State staff for the 2012 season and mentored Philip Harvey to All-American honors for returning while serving as the running backs and fullbacks coach as well.

Prior to Northwestern State, Powledge served as a graduate assistant from 2010-11 at Southeastern Louisiana. He earned his Master of Arts in Sports Management there while assisting with everyday planning for the opponents.

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Powledge was a standout at Sam Houston State from 2005-09, culminating in All-Southland and team captain honors his senior season. He also made the Academic Honor Roll and was invited to the Elite Pro Football Combine.

Playing for coach Mitch Coey at Huntsville (Texas) High School, Powledge was an all-district running back and linebacker and earned area “Red Zone Player of the Year” honors.

He earned his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from Sam Houston in 2009 and his Master’s degree in sports management from Southeastern Louisiana in 2011.

Powledge's hiring is pending approval by the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors.

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Alma Mater: Sam Houston State, 2009

Hometown: Huntsville, Texas


2016-17, ULM Assistant Coach (Tight Ends/Special Teams Coordinator)

2014-15, Sam Houston State Assistant Coach (Running Backs/Special Teams Coordinator)

2013, Kentucky Graduate Assistant

2012, Northwestern State Assistant Coach (Running Backs)

2010-11, Southeastern Louisiana Graduate Assistant