The last time the Greyhounds won a Lone Star Conference (LSC) South Division title, the late Harold Elliott was head coach. That was during the 2005 season. A few years prior, Josh Lynn helped Elliott earn his second and third division titles.
Lynn's 44 career receptions and 740 yards earned him two-time All-LSC selections at tight end.
Now Lynn will attempt to do something he could not do as a player, and something that neither Elliott nor his successor Mark Ribaudo could not do as head coaches at Eastern New Mexico University (ENMU): take the Greyhounds to the playoffs.
Interestingly enough, Elliot spent 11 seasons as head coach at ENMU and produced nine winning seasons (three seasons with eight wins). He is the school's all-time winningest coach in football, with an overall record of 68-49-2 (.580), yet the team never clinched a berth in the NCAA Division II playoffs.
From 2000-02, Lynn served as the Greyhounds wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator. Now he re-joins his alma mater after spending six seasons at New Mexico Military Institute (NMMI). He had been the team's defensive coordinator until being hired as head coach in 2011.
Lynn brought instant success to a team that finished 3-8 in 2010. NMMI finished sixth in the nation and clinched a berth in the 2011 CHAMPS Heart of Texas Bowl, where they lost 40-24 to Navarro College (Texas).
Quarterback Wesley Wood returns to ENMU to help Lynn turn around the Greyhounds' troubles.
Last season Wood set new ENMU career records for completions (673), pass attempts (1,081), passing yards (6,516), total offense (7,184) and the highest completion percentage (64.9%).
Wood's favorite target Darian Dale has graduated, but Chase Kyser, Arvin Jackson and Michael Matthews return.
Nevertheless, Lynn has inherited a team that had one of the worst offenses AND defenses in both the LSC and NCAA. Former Valencia High School (New Mexico) head football coach Kelley Lee takes over as offensive coordinator, while ENMU alum and former teammate of Josh Lynn, Oliver Soukup, will handle defensive coordinator duties.
Soukup spent six seasons as a defensive coordinator at Concordia University (Minnesota). His 2010 defense set the school record with 39 sacks, which ranked 12th in the nation. They also ranked 14th nationally in pass defense and 20th in scoring defense.
Soukup's first year as defensive coordinator at Concordia featured a unit that ranked sixth in the nation in run defense and 14th in total defense.
Lynn and his defensive players hope Soukup can do the same at ENMU.