NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Southeastern announced on Tuesday that the hiring of former St. Louis Rams defensive coordinator Blake Williams for the same position with the Lions. He will be on the field when the team begins spring practice this week.
"Blake is going to be a tremendous addition to our staff," said SLU Head Coach Ron Roberts in a statement released by the school. "He brings with him a wealth of experience as a coach at the professional level, as well as playing experience from his time at Princeton. Blake shares the same philosophy that we do, so we expect to be very similar on defense in 2015. But, Blake is going to bring a fresh perspective that is going to be a plus for our program."
The hiring comes on the heels of former Lions defensive coordinator Karl Scott leaving to become the safeties coach at Louisiana Tech.
Williams, the son of former New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, has spent the last two seasons serving as a defensive consultant for Division II William Jewell College. His other stops include two years as a coaching intern with the Washington Redskins, linebackers coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2008 and as an offensive assistant for the Saints from 2009 to 2011 where he was a part of the 2009 Super Bowl winning team.
Joining his father in St. Louis as a linebacker coach before the 2012 season, Williams was promoted to defensive coordinator after Gregg was suspended for the season in the fallout from the Saints' bounty scandal. They were both fired after just one season.
Williams takes over a Southeastern defense that, under Scott, led the Southland Conference in both scoring and total defense in 2014. Among the players returning to the Lions' defense for the 2015 season is senior All-American cornerback Harlan Miller, safety Micah Eugene and defensive back Denzel Thompson.
"We feel great about where we are on defense," said Roberts. "We have a lot of talent on that side of the ball and several players with aspirations of playing at the next level and Blake has the knowledge to help them not only succeed here, but also realize their future dreams."