All-SEC player for Auburn as senior in 1994
By ANDY BITTER
AUBURN, Ala. -- Mike Pelton, an All-SEC defensive lineman for Auburn in the 1990s, has been hired as the Tigers’ new defensive line coach.
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Pelton, 39, replaces Tracy Rocker, who joined the Tennessee Titans’ staff last month.
“I’m very excited and humbled to return to Auburn and be a part of what coach (Gene) Chizik and his staff have built during the last two years,” Pelton said. “I look forward to working with a young defensive line and getting them ready to compete next season. Auburn has always had a special place in my heart, and it’s been my goal to coach at my alma mater.”
Pelton was Chizik’s defensive line coach at Iowa State from 2007-08, coaching All-Big 12 selections Ahtyba Rubin and Kurtis Taylor.
Before that, he coached at Troy under Larry Blakeney for six years, the last two as co-defensive coordinator. He coached NFL standouts Demarcus Ware and Osi Umenyiora with the Trojans.
“He’s a great coach, a tireless worker and an outstanding recruiter who has mentored some very good players,” Chizik said. “Mike is very familiar with the state and region, and he knows what it takes to coach and recruit in the Southeastern Conference.”
Pelton spent last year at Vanderbilt. After the staff was let go following the season, he joined Louisiana-Lafayette in January.
A Goshen, Ala., native, Pelton was a four-year letterman at Auburn from 1991-94. He was a co-captain his senior season, earning All-SEC honors. He graduated from Auburn in 1995 with a degree in health and sports science.
He was a fifth-round pick by the Kansas City Chiefs in 1995 and moved to the Indianapolis Colts the next year. He got his college coaching start with Division II Valdosta State in 2000.
Pelton and his wife, Staci, have three daughters: Myesa, 14; Tyra, 11; and Peyton, 1.