Jim Deere embarks on his sixth season as head coach at Adrian College and has led the Bulldogs to two MIAA championships in the last three seasons. He and his coaching staff captured the school’s 11th Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship in 2014 and he owns an overall record of 36-16. The 36 wins in five seasons is the best start of any coach in school history. In 2012, the Bulldogs tied the school record with nine wins (9-2) and went unblemished in the MIAA standings with a 6-0 record. Adrian outscored their conference opponents, 147-40, and allowed just four touchdowns including only one through the air. The Bulldogs ended the regular season ranked 25th in the American Football Coaches Association NCAA Division III poll and hosted an NCAA playoff game for the first time in school history against Franklin (Ind.) College. Adrian’s defense finished the season ranked in the top 25 in Division III in four defensive categories including total defense (7th), scoring defense (10th), pass defense (14th) and rushing defense (25th).
Deere became the 24th head coach in the history of Adrian College football on November 15, 2009. Deere has made a smooth transition into the head coaching role and this fall will be his 23rd season on the Adrian College sidelines. Deere served as defensive coordinator for three years (2007-09) and also has called the defensive plays up until his promotion.
Deere’s second season at the helm saw the Bulldogs finish 8-2 overall and 4-2 in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA). The team finished third in the league standings and lost both games by a combined 17 points including one of those losses in overtime on the road at Hope College. The Bulldogs started the season with a 7-0 record and were ranked as high as 16th nationally by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) on October 24th. The team’s first win of the season saw Adrian travel to Husson University and set a school-record for points in a 77-7 victory. The team also had two very exciting road wins. Adrian won on a last-second field goal (17-14) at Augustana and then snapped a losing streak against rival Trine with a 26-7 win against the 17th-ranked Thunder in Angola, Indiana.
The Bulldogs led the MIAA in scoring offense (32.5 points per game) and scoring defense (14.2 points per game) in 2011. Deere’s defense was once again stellar ranking seventh nationally in pass efficiency defense (89.28). The team allowed 124.9 yards per game on the ground and ranked 15th nationally in total defense (263.10 yards per contest). The aggressive nature of the defense was also highlighted by finishing sixth nationally in tackles for loss per game (8.8). In total, the Bulldog defense led the MIAA in five different statistical categories.
Deere’s first season as head coach at Adrian College featured one of the strongest schedules in school history and the team went 5-5 overall and finished in a second-place tie in the MIAA with a 4-2 league mark. The Bulldogs had four First Team All-MIAA players and five more make the Second Team All-MIAA list. The team ranked second in the MIAA in total defense yielding 308.2 yards per game. The Bulldogs also ranked second in turnover margin (+4) and rushing defense (124.5 ypg). Deere’s first win came on September 11, 2010 with a 40-14 triumph over Defiance College. Deere’s defense also pitched a shutout on October 9 at Olivet (41-0).
The defensive numbers were staggering over the three-year period under coach Deere before taking over as head coach. The Bulldogs quietly became one of the more feared defensive units in Division III and the stats tell the story. In 2009, Adrian finished first in the MIAA in five different statistical categories including scoring defense (16.2 ppg), passing defense (162.3 ypg), total defense (281.6 ypg), pass efficiency defense (94.0) and sacks (26 for minus 158 yards). In addition, AC was 16th nationally in pass efficiency defense, 28th in scoring defense and 17th in tackles for loss.
In 2008, Adrian finished fourth in Division III in total defense limiting their opponents to 239 yards per game. In addition, Deere’s crew ranked fourth in scoring defense (12.4), seventh in rushing defense (71.2 ypg) and fourth in tackles for loss (9.1 per game).
The Bulldog defense finished 2007 as one of the best in school history. The defense ranked first in the MIAA in nine different statistical categories and finished the year ranked sixth in total defense in Division III. The Bulldogs allowed just 74.6 yards per game on the ground (10th nationally) and 14.4 points per game (12th nationally).
Along with his experience at AC, Deere coached at Sterling Heights Stevenson High School in 1993 and 1994 and Morenci High School in 1996.
A 1989 graduate of Adrian College, Deere was a four-year letterwinner for the Bulldogs and was a player on the 1988 MIAA Championship team.
Deere resides in Adrian and has three children - Angelica, Danielle and Blake.