PAINESVILLE, Ohio – The Lake Erie College football program has added two coaches to their staff. The Storm added Ross Jenkins as their new offensive coordinator, quarterbacks coach, and recruiting coordinator. Devante Sims returns to his alma mater to coach the defensive backs.
Head Coach Gerald Hazzard said, "I am very excited to have coach Jenkins on board because of his experience. He comes from Wingate university where they won conference championships and made the NCAA playoffs. I believe he can help us create a winning culture here. Coach Sims is going to be a great player coach. He has tremendous leadership skills and is a proven recruiter. Being a former player he will be able to form strong bonds with our current guys."
Prior to Lake Erie, Jenkins was Wingate's wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator. The Louisiana Tech graduate was a member of the Bulldog football coaching staff for five seasons. Jenkins was the team's WU Career Services contact, in addition to his other duties. This past season, Wingate University went 9-2 & finished ranked #24 in the AFCA National Rankings. This including a 9-0 start and a #12 National ranking in route of a South Atlantic Conference Championship and a 2017 playoff berth. In 2016, Jenkins helped wide receiver Jordan Berry earn All-South Atlantic Conference honors for the fourth consecutive season. Berry led the Bulldogs in receiving for each of his four seasons in the Navy Blue and Vegas Gold. Berry caught 47 passes for 540 yards and five touchdowns during the 2015 season. In 2014, Berry led the Bulldogs with 50 catches for 586 yards and six touchdowns. In 2013, Berry topped the Wingate charts with his 45 catches for 700 yards and seven touchdowns.
Jenkins spent the 2012 season with the Murray State Racers as the wide receivers coach, responsible for the tutelage of all four wide receiver positions. During his season with the Racers, the offense averaged over 480 yards of total offense per game including nearly 350 passing yards per game. Prior to his time at Murray State, Jenkins served as a graduate assistant and inside receivers coach along with his role as the head film/video coordinator for Eastern New Mexico University.
Jenkins graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Economics in 2010. During his playing days, Jenkins lettered four years at Louisiana Tech; he was the starting quarterback for three consecutive seasons. Throughout his career as a Bulldog, Jenkins played in 35 games and accumulated over 5000 yards and 36 touchdowns while completing 438-of-743 pass attempts.
Coach Jenkins added, "I am extremely excited and grateful for the opportunity that Coach Hazzard and Lake Erie have given me to become a member of their coaching staff. Coach Hazzard has an amazing track record of producing prolific offenses in past years and I am eager to build upon those successes to help our program compete at a high level in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference."
Prior to Lake Erie, Sims was the Graduate Assistant Coach for defensive backs at Angelo State University. Sims was with the Rams for one season. He was in charge of directing cornerback sessions at practice and also assisted in the management of special teams. During his stint at Angelo State, Sims coached one All-American, three Lone Star Conference All-Conference players, and the Lone Star Conference Defensive Back of the Year. As a team, the Rams posted the second ranked passing defense in the Lone Star Conference.
Sims spent the 2016 season coaching the cornerbacks at Thiel College. He was in charge of the day to day operations of the cornerbacks. Sims helped to establish the recruiting of players from Florida to Thiel College. Under the direction of Sims, two players were named Honorable Mention in the Presidents' Athletic Conference.
Sims is a graduate of Lake Erie College where he earned his Bachelor's degree. Sims was a three year starter for the Storm, and played in 25 games in his career. Sims is in the top five in program history for forced fumbles with four, and pass break ups with 10. He also amassed 113 tackles in his career as a defensive back.
Coach Sims concluded, "Being able to come back to the school where you played college ball at is always exciting. I'm thrilled to be given the opportunity to come back to LEC and help turn the culture around and establish winning ways here. We are going to do great things here!"