INDIANAPOLIS, IN –Tyler Bless and Elijah Ferguson will join the Butler Bulldogs football coaching staff, head coach Jeff Voris announced Tuesday (June 14). Bless will mentor the running backs, while Ferguson will have responsibility for the defensive tackles.
Bless arrives at Butler after serving as the running backs coach at the University of Indianapolis for the past two seasons. While with the Greyhounds, Bless was involved in weekly game-planning, in addition to recruiting and assisting with video analysis of opponents. UIndy won the Great Lakes Valley Conference championship in each of his two seasons on the staff, while Matt Ripp (2014) and Andrew Walker (2015) earned All-GLVC honors at the running back position.
“Tyler is a member of one of the great football coaching families in Indiana,” said Voris. “He has also played for and coached with some great coaches. We are very excited to have Tyler join our staff and look forward to what he will bring to our program.”
Bless also has served as an Offensive Graduate Assistant/Slot Receivers Coach at Defiance College and as an Intern/Student Coach at Franklin College.
Bless was a three-year letterwinner at Franklin as a wide receiver, helping the team to three Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference championships and NCAA Playoff appearances in 2010 and 2011.
His grandfather, Bill, was inducted into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame in 1994 and amassed the most wins every by a UIndy football coach with a record of 114-99-9 from 1972-93. His father, Mark, is a successful high school coach, coaching Tyler at Mooresville (Ind.) High School.
Ferguson spent the 2015 season as the defensive line coach at Earlham College in Richmond, Ind. In addition to overseeing his position group, Ferguson played a key role in recruiting, video and equipment, as well as the academic development of a group of student-athletes.
“Elijah will be a great addition to our program,” said Voris. “His energy and work ethic will be a great fit with our staff and players. We are excited to have his coaching journey continue within our program and we can’t wait for him to get started.”
Ferguson spent the 2014 season as the defensive ends coach at Dutch Fork High School in Columbia, S.C., as the team was the state runner-up in Class 4A. One of his defensive ends participated in the South Carolina North South High School All-Star Game following the season.
Also in 2014, Ferguson served as a Camp Operations Intern for the Buffalo Bills as part of the organization’s Player Personnel Department. He served as an intern with the Cleveland Browns for a good portion of the 2013 season.
Ferguson spent the 2012 and 2013 seasons with the Miami (Ohio) football program, serving as a first in a defensive quality control position and then as a defensive graduate assistant. In this role, he worked with the defensive coaching staff on practice plans, helping to coordinate the scout team, and video analysis. Ferguson was the assistant defensive line coach for the 2011 season at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio.
He graduated from Saint Augustine’s College in 2009 and earned his Masters in Education from Wright State in 2012.
Butler opens the 2016 schedule Saturday, Sept. 3 at Indiana State. The Bulldogs’ home opener is Saturday, Sept. 10 when Franklin comes to the Butler Bowl for a 6:30 p.m. kick-off.
Chris Fultz is a senior writer for the Indiana Sports Report and is recognized as an accredited member of the media by Butler Athletics and has full media access. Follow @CafultzISR and the @IndySportsRep on Twitter.
Chris Fultz is a Senior Writer and the Butler Athletics beat writer for the Indiana Sports Report. Chris Fultz is recognized as an accredited member of the media by Butler University Athletics and has full media access.
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