DELAND MCCULLOUGH RETURNS TO IU AS ASSOCIATE HEAD COACH
Credit Source: Indiana University Athletics
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana head football coach Tom Allen announced on Tuesday the hiring of Super Bowl champion Deland McCullough as associate head coach and running backs coach. McCullough spent 2018-20 as the Kansas City Chiefs running backs coach and will enter his second stint with the Hoosiers (2011-16).
“The opportunity to return to IU in this role is very special to me and my family for a host of reasons,” McCullough said. “Coach Allen has done an amazing job of galvanizing and advancing the program’s culture, which has been displayed by success on the field. I welcome the challenges and glory of being a part of helping Indiana Football win championships. I have been fortunate to have won a championship on the ultimate stage in the NFL, and I know what it looks like and how it feels. I believe that Indiana University is primed to not only CHASE, but to capture championships in football, and I can’t wait to contribute.”
Allen served as Indiana’s defensive coordinator on the same staff as McCullough in 2016.
“I could not be happier to welcome Deland, his wife Darnell, and the McCullough family back home to Bloomington,” Allen said. “Deland’s a first-class person that has gone on to do great things in the NFL. He has won a Super Bowl, worked with a Hall of Fame coach and helped develop some of the most dynamic players and offenses in football. I cannot wait to bring his winning mindset to our program.”
In his seven years in the collegiate coaching ranks, McCullough has mentored seven 1,000-yard running backs, including five from 2014-17. Two of his backs earned All-America honors and nine secured all-conference recognition.
All five of his featured rushers – Stephen Houston, Tevin Coleman, Jordan Howard, Devine Redding and Ronald Jones – reached the NFL.
During his first run in Bloomington, the Hoosiers set 19 program rushing records. McCullough was named the 2014 BTN.com running backs coach of the year.
Coleman (2015) and Howard (2016) became the first Indiana running backs to be drafted in consecutive years since 1990-92. Atlanta selected Coleman in the third round and Chicago picked Howard in the fifth.
Redding became the fourth IU back to record two-straight 1,000-yard campaigns (20015-16) and the first since Vaughn Dunbar (1990-91).
The 2015 Hoosiers became the fourth team in FBS history with a 3,500-yard passer, two 1,000-yard rushers and one 1,000-yard receiver in the same year.
Howard (1,213), a first-team All-Big Ten honoree, and Redding (1,012) each eclipsed 1,000 yards, the first time two runners have done so in the same season in program history. Indiana was one of two Power 5 teams (Baylor) to accomplish that feat in 2015.
Coupled with Coleman (2014), it marked the third time in school history two different IU running backs earned first-team All-B1G honors in back-to-back years: Marv Woodson (1962) and Tom Nowatzke (1963-64); Vern Huffman (1936) and Corby Davis (1937).
The Hoosiers set a school single-season record with 3,163 rushing yards and averaged 263.6 rushing yards per game (9th nationally, 3rd in the Big Ten) in 2014.
Coleman became the 18th player in FBS history to rush for 2,000 yards (2,036), which set a school record, was 16th on the FBS all-time list and sixth in Big Ten history.
The Tinley Park, Ill., native was Indiana’s third unanimous and consensus All-American in 2014, finished seventh in the Heisman Trophy voting and was a finalist for the Doak Walker Award.
Coleman finished second nationally in rushing yards (2,036), rushing yards per game (169.7), all-purpose yards per game (181.4) and yards from scrimmage per game (181.4), third in yards from scrimmage (2,177), fifth in all-purpose yards (2,177) and rushing yards per carry (7.54), tied for 19th in rushing touchdowns (15) and tied for 25th in total TDs (15).
On the Hoosiers career lists, he is first with 7.1 yards per attempt, fifth with 3,219 rushing yards, 4,292 all-purpose yards and 28 rushing scores, and tied for seventh with 29 total touchdowns.
Houston (2011-13) is tied for sixth with 25 rushing TDs, tied for seventh with 29 total scores, tied for 10th with nine 100-yard games and 11th with 2,304 rushing yards on IU’s all-time lists.
Indiana ranked fourth in the Big Ten with 201.8 rushing yards per game (30th nationally) and 25 rushing touchdowns in 2013. The Hoosiers also sat third in the league with 5.3 yards per carry (16th nationally).
IU rushed for 1,374 yards in league play and the running backs lost just one fumble in 272 attempts in his first year.
McCullough moved on to the professional ranks after one season (2017) as USC’s run game coordinator/running backs coach. The Trojans won the Pac-12 championship and clinched a Cotton Bowl berth.
Backs Ronald Jones and Stephen Carr each carded All-Pac-12 accolades. Jones garnered All-America honors and was selected in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft by Tampa Bay.
In his three years in Kansas City, the Chiefs won Super Bowl LIV, played in back-to-back Super Bowls and advanced to three-straight AFC Championship Games, the only AFC team to ever host three in a row.
McCullough was recognized as the NFL’s running backs coach of the year at the 2020 Combine. His rushers consistently ranked among the league’s leaders in yards after catch, yards after contact and fewest sacks allowed. McCullough’s group surrendered just four sacks in his three campaigns, including zero in 2020.
He guided Anthony Sherman to the 2018 Pro Bowl, and rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire surpassed 1,000 yards from scrimmage this year. McCullough also coached standouts Kareem Hunt, Damien Williams, LeSean McCoy and Le’Veon Bell.
McCullough served as an offensive and special teams intern at Miami (Ohio) University in 2010. The RedHawks captured the MAC championship and won the 2011 GoDaddy.com Bowl, after which he was promoted to running backs coach.
He was a three-time All-MAC selection (first team in 1992 and 1995, second team in 1994) at Miami from 1992-95.
McCullough ended his career as the MAC and Miami recordholder for career rushing yards (4,368) and career rushing attempts (949). He was the first RedHawk to lead the team in rushing four years, topping the 1,000-yard mark on three occasions.
An inductee into the Miami Athletics Hall of Fame in 2004, McCullough became the first Miami player to be named MAC Freshman of the Year (1992) and was later a finalist for the Doak Walker Award.
From 1996-2001, he signed to play professionally for the Cincinnati Bengals and Philadelphia Eagles, the CFL’s Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the XFL’s Chicago Enforcers.
Following his playing career, McCullough worked in education at the high school level as a teacher, head football coach, athletic director and certified principal.
In seven years as a coach, athletic director and school administrator, he was responsible for the placement of over 100 student-athletes into college on scholarships.
Deland and his wife, Darnell, have four sons, Deland II, Dasan, Daeh and Diem.