Head Football Coach
Phone: (503) 725-5625
Nigel Burton and quarterback Connor Kavanaugh
The transformation of the program began in 2010, and Head Coach Nigel Burton reaped the results in 2011 as he made Portland State football one of the most improved teams in the nation.
Simply put, PSU
was one of the most improved teams in the nation, and Burton
was one of 20 finalists for national Coach of the Year.
was also named as a finalist for the Oregon Sports Awards' Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year.
Here is a quick summary of all the Portland State Football program's accomplishments in 2011:
• Portland State had its first winning season and best record since 2006 (7-4).
The Vikings, picked seventh in preseason polling, finished third in the Big Sky Conference (5-3)... PSU made its first appearance in the national polls since the first week of the 2007 season (25th on Nov. 14)... second-year Head Coach Nigel Burton was named a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award for engineering the Vikings' turnaround.
placed 14th in the final balloting.
Off the field, Burton
has worked hard to transform the image, structure, discipline and support for the program.
That has included:
Nigel Burton was named the new head football coach at Portland State University on December 8, 2009.
Burton, who had been the Defensive Coordinator for the Nevada Wolf Pack the past two seasons, returned to the school for which he was an assistant coach during the 2001 and 2002 seasons.
He is the 13th head coach in the history of Portland State football, and is charged with returning the Vikings to prominence in the Big Sky Conference and nationally at the NCAA I Football Championship Subdivision level.
"I'm thrilled to have Nigel Burton as our Head Football Coach.
Nigel brings the whole package - great recruiting skills, a focus on student-athlete success, strong interpersonal skills, and an ability to teach," said Portland State Director of Athletics Torre Chisholm.
has been a leader in all his
endeavors, as well as a winner.
I expect great things from the football program and student-athletes under Nigel's leadership."
Said Portland State President Wim Wiewel: "Nigel is the right man for the job.
"The opportunity to come back to a university that I loved being a part of before was outstanding," Burton
"I believe the potential is here to return to the dominance that Portland State once had.
The improvement of facilities and campus life is a big part of that.
Portland State is a great place to get a world-class education, to play great football and live in one of the best cities in the country."
spent the two seasons with the Nevada Wolf
In that time, Nevada improved from 6-7 prior to his
arrival, to 7-6 in 2008 and 8-5 in 2009.
Prior to his
time with Nevada, Burton
spent five seasons at Oregon State as the secondary coach (2003-08).
During that time, Oregon State was 39-24 and won all four bowl games in which it participated.
The Beavers ranked among the top three teams in total defense in the Pac-10 each of those five seasons.
Six of the defensive backs coached by Burton
during those years have gone on to NFL careers.
Former Viking Head Coach Tim Walsh hired Nigel Burton as his defensive backs coach in 2001.
had two first-team All-Conference performers in his
two seasons at PSU
(Reynard Carrie, 2001; Mitchell Fitzhugh, 2002).
was scheduled to take over as special teams coordinator at Portland State
in 2003 before getting a position as secondary coach to Oregon State.
Burton began his coaching career as a defensive assistant at the University of South Florida in 2000.
More than coaching, Burton
brought with him a reputation as one of the west coast's top football recruiters.
has shown the ability to attract talented student-athletes to his
In 2006, Burton
was named one of the top 10 recruiters in the Pac-10 by Rivals.com.
also has strong plans on student-athlete academic progress and student-athlete development off the football field.
came from a program at Nevada that has maintained an APR rate over 925 throughout current head coach Chris Ault's tenure.
A 1999 graduate of the University of Washington, Burton was a three-year starter at safety, leading the Huskies to three bowl games.
was a three-time Academic All-Pac-10 and Academic All-District selection as well.
As a senior in 1998, Burton was a team captain.
He started his career at University of the Pacific in Stockton, CA and was a starter as a freshman before the program was eliminated.
While at Washington, Burton was appointed to the Management Council to represent the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (1997-99).
Other honors include the Black Coaches Association
Postgraduate Award (2000) and the NACDA John McClendon Memorial Minority Scholarship (2000).
Burton served as a Championships Intern with NCAA in 1999.
He was a graduate assistant at the University of Florida in 1999, assisting with football recruiting and the Life Skills program.
He moved on to coach and earn an MBA at South Florida the following year.
Other credits include being a consultant for the NCAA
Initial Eligibility Consultants' Group from 1999-2004 and serving as a defensive intern with the Denver Broncos
Burton is a native of Sacramento where he attended Jesuit High School.
He earned a bachelors degree in Business Administration at Washington in 1999, and an MBA from the University of South Florida in 2001.
However, including Washington, Portland State
and Oregon State, Burton
has spent 10 years in the Pacific Northwest.
and his wife, Heather, have a son, Jace (6), and daughter, Ella Joyce (3).
ALL-BIG SKY CONFERENCE VIKINGS UNDER NIGEL BURTON