A veteran of 29 seasons as a collegiate assistant coach, including 20 tutoring running backs, nine in the state of Texas and 12 in the Southwest, Ken Rucker is in his eighth season at The University of Texas. He is in his fifth year in the position of director of high school relations and player development after spending three years as running backs coach.
Rucker works extensively with the High School Coaches Clinic and summer camps while assisting with the development of the Longhorn football players. He also works closely in managing prospects visits on campus and coordinating campus and facility tours for unofficial visits. In working with the current team, Rucker helps manage and oversee many of their off-the-field responsibilities while assisting in their community service efforts.
Prior to accepting his current position, Rucker completed the 2007 season with the running backs by helping guide junior Jamaal Charles to unanimous first-team All-Big 12 honors and a selection as a Doak Walker Award semifinalist. Charles rushed for 1,619 yards (No. 5 on UT's single-season list) and 18 TDs (No. 8 NCAA/T-No. 5 on UT's single-season list). Junior Chris Ogbonnaya and redshirt freshman Vondrell McGee also combined for 363 yards and 10 TDs.
In 2006, Rucker balanced carries between two running backs that rank in the top 20 in yardage on UT's all-time list. Charles led Texas with 831 yards and seven TDs, while Selvin Young chipped in 591 yards and seven TDs. Young finished his career ranked 19th on UT's all-time list with 1,713 yards. The running backs also contributed to the passing game, producing 49 receptions for 366 yards and two TDs.
In his first season as running backs coach at Texas, Rucker helped produce four players who tallied at least 400 yards rushing to go along with Vince Young's 1,050 yards rushing. Charles led the group with 878 yards rushing and 11 TDs on his way to Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year and honorable mention Freshman All-America honors.
Rucker joined the Longhorn staff after spending the previous two seasons as running backs coach at Georgia. He helped the Bulldogs post a 21-5 record and back-to-back No. 7 finishes in 2003-04. In 2004, he directed a pair of freshman backs (Thomas Brown and Danny Ware) that combined to produce 1,567 rushing yards and 12 TDs to help Georgia to a 10-2 record. Prior to his two-year stint at Georgia, Rucker spent two years coaching running backs at Texas A&M.
In addition to coaching at Texas A&M in 2001-02, Rucker also worked as running backs coach on R.C. Slocum's Aggie staff from 1994-1997. Between his two stops at Texas A&M, Rucker was a part of Carl Torbush's (Brown's successor with the Tar Heels) staff at North Carolina as special teams coordinator/linebackers coach for three seasons (1998-2000).
Prior to joining the Texas A&M staff the first time in 1994, Rucker served as assistant head coach/running backs coach at Baylor (1993) and running backs coach at Arkansas (1990-92).
From 1984-89, Rucker worked as running backs coach for the United States Air Force Academy and helped the Falcons to three bowl berths, one of which was a 1985 Bluebonnet Bowl victory (24-16) over Texas. Air Force finished that year ranked No. 5 nationally, the Falcons' top all-time final ranking.
Rucker began his coaching career on defense, serving as a defensive coordinator at James Cawood H.S. (Harlan, Ky.) in 1976 and defensive coordinator at David Crockett H.S. (Jonesborough, Tenn.) from 1977-78. From 1979-81, he coached the defensive line at Appalachian State and then was outside linebacker coach at the University of Richmond from 1982-83.
A native of Morristown, Tenn., Rucker earned a bachelor's degree in physical education from Carson-Newman College in 1976. A standout defensive player for the Eagles, he was named the Most Valuable Player in 1976, all-conference as a linebacker in 1975 and Most Valuable Defensive Lineman in 1974. In April of 2009, Rucker was named to the Carson-Newman Football Hall of Fame.
Rucker and his wife, Nancy, have one daughter, Kenny Lynnette.
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