Saturday, September 6, 2014

GAMEDAY Spotlight: Defensive Coordinator- Phil Elmassian

One of the keys to Ferrum turning around from the woe's of last season, will have to come from an improvement in their defense. In the off season, a former Black Hat returned for what is his third stint at Ferrum. Coach E brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table, and while no one should look for overnight change, Ferrum will likely improve quickly under this guy.

Coach E's Bio:

Phil Elmassian first came to Ferrum in 1969 when he played football for Hank Norton when the school was a junior college.  After playing two seasons at Ferrum, in which the Panthers posted a 12-4-1 mark, Elmassian transferred to the College of William & Mary, where he played for the Tribe under Lou Holtz in 1971 and under Jim Root in 1972.

Elmassian returned to Ferrum after a 31 years away from the Panther gridiron program when he joined the coaching staff in the spring of 2014.  Elmassian is Ferrum's Defensive Coordinator.  One of the most sought-after defensive coaches in the country returns to his roots to help give back to the school where he started.

Elmassian began his coaching career at William & Mary, serving as quarterbacks and running backs coach from 1974-75.  He spent the next three years as an assistant coach at the University of Richmond before joining Norton on the Ferrum coaching staff from 1979-82.  He has coached at five Virginia schools, including Ferrum, Virginia Tech, William & Mary, University of Virginia (ACC Champions) and University of Richmond.

Elmassian's career includes stops at East Carolina, Minnesota, Syracuse, Washington (Pac 10 Champions), Boston College, Wisconsin (2X Big 10 Champions), LSU, West Virginia, Marshall (MAC East Champions), Perdue, Nebraska, Louisiana-Monroe, Illinois State and most recently at U-Mass.  He has coached in many post-season bowl games, including the Rose Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Gator Bowl, Sun Bowl, Peach Bowl, Cotton Bowl, Motor City Bowl, Alamo Bowl, Outback Bowl, Capital One Bowl, GMAC Bowl, Independence Bowl, Citrus Bowl, All-American Bowl and Hall of Fame Bowl.            

Ferrum is fortunate to have Coach E back home. Go Panthers!


  1. Replies
    1. Nothings automatic. Players play, coaches coach. It will get better.

  2. The point of a blog is to accept and post the good and bad as long as there is no foul language not to be sensored, I didn't write the removed post but do have issues with sensorship if coaches cannot accept criticism they shouldn't coach I was at the game and was not pleased with what I saw on the field or some of the coaches actions body language wise or some of his comments to the players

    1. That's the truth!!! I too saw what went on with the coaches mouthing off to the refs and yelling at their own players instead of coaching!! So I ask when are these coaches going to take the responsibility of coaching and producing instead of making excuses and having their fans or people like you Allan to make excuses for them????

  3. I am not here to totally complain but it is real hard not to do so.i saw in the column that FC is fortunate to have coach E and how great it is. True he has been around but you can find alot of coaches who have been around with similar credentials who have been in the game for awhile and never been a head coach????? THAT POSES AN INTERESTING QUESTION AS TO WHY NOT?? Let's stop praising the past and grade the present waving his hands in a disgusted manner at his players is a real confidence builder for these young men when you have 70 freshman on the team.some of these young men have never played on a losing team and that is new to them and some such as a friend of mines freshman has always been on a losing team these kids need to be given whichever program they are from guidance and some hope that this not going to be the norm. I do not know what the athletic transfer rate is but I'm sure it can't be good.i have visited FC and have met coach Harper who seems to genuinely care about his players.I liked the school and would seriously consider sending mine to FC . This feeling of how coach harper feels is not I believe across the board I helped my friends drop off their son at the start of camp and went with them thru registration and some of the comments made by some coaches was down right rude. My friends player is a specialist and at one station the player was asked a question aboutwhat position he played , he said specialist and the response was you need to go over there because nobody cares about yall. If I hadn't heard this for myself I wouldn't have believed it. Here you have an incoming freshman who's parents are paying a lot of money and this is the way someone on staff talks to new kids .they love the school so they stayed and he made the team i might not have had the same thoughts.hopefully this will be posted but as i have seen the politically correct police are on duty as i see one post has been removed and someone else complained about it .

  4. Below is the text of the deleted comment.


  5. In the interest of accuracy, they gave up 41 points

  6. Hey Allan, The comment was Coach E Who????? Who gives up 44 points and lose Once again Good Ole FC!!! I honestly don't get you I know that being a homer means defending your team no matter how bad they are but come on how pathetic do you have to be to see that FC is nothing more than a school that plays favorites and over recruits to keep the cash flowing!!!! Again CASH IS KING BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. I don't get some of these comments- especially from parents. Are the coaches to blame? Sure to a certain extent. But you can't coach a player to do something he can't do either physically or mentally. And that's one of the issues at the root of the problem- the TALENT is not there in the program. If you don't have a certain amount of speed, or size,or strength- then there's only so much coaching that is going to help.Yes this is D3, but coaches are here to win (hopefully), and they quickly know what players got it and who doesn't. With the influx of D3 start up schools in the late 90's and early 2000's- Ferrum lost the recruiting advantage they had in the heydays. They've been trying to recover ever since.