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Inside the Headset with the AFCA

Nov 18, 2021

This week on Inside the Headset, we are featuring longtime Division I Head Coach, Ken Hatfield. Coach Hatfield highlights what inspired him to get into coaching, shares his personal philosophy for leading a football team, and explains why he enjoys attending the annual AFCA conventions.

Coach Hatfield began his college head coaching career at the United States Air Force Academy from 1979 to 1983. He gradually rebuilt a program that had struggled through most of the 1970s and laid the foundation for its success in the 1980s and early 1990s. Hatfield then moved to his alma mater, Arkansas, where he compiled a 55–17–1 record from 1984 to 1989. His teams won two straight Southwest Conference titles in 1988 and 1989, a feat that the Razorbacks had not accomplished since the early 1960s. After a successful coaching run at Arkansas, Coach Hatfield headed East where he took over as Head Coach for the Clemson Tigers. Hatfield coached at Clemson from 1990 to 1993, compiling an impressive 32–13–1 record and won the 1991 ACC title.

Coach Hatfields final coaching stop was at the University of Rice where he lead the program from 1994-2005. In his first season with the Owls, Hatfield and his team won a share of the Southwest Conference title which was his SWC title of his career. During his 27 years as a head coach, Coach Hatfield received many honors including the AFCA Coach of the Year (1983), the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year (1983) and the Amos Alonzo Stagg Award (2015). Coach Hatfield also served as the AFCA President in 2004.

  • [1:45] Start of Interview
  • [2:16] Inspiration for coaching
  • [5:36] Personal coaching philosophy
  • [10:29] Getting the most out of your players and coaches
  • [11:57] Personal AFCA experience
  • [15:35] Networking at the convention
  • [17:00] Value of the AFCA