University of the Cumberlands

January 10, 2014

University of the Cumberlands (UC) is pleased to announce the hiring of Mr. Matt Rhymer as the school's fifth Head Football Coach.

"It is an honor, a privilege, and a humbling opportunity that I have been preparing for since I was a player," said Coach Rhymer.  "I had a great experience at UC as both a player and a coach and the opportunity to give back to the university that has done so much for me is an amazing occasion.  My sincere thanks go out to Dr. and Mrs. Taylor, Coach Vernon, and Dr. Cockrum for their confidence in me.  I'm looking forward to working with the UC faculty and staff and our community and am excited about connecting with our football alumni."

Rhymer was graduated from the University of the Cumberlands in 2007 with a degree in Public Health.  He played football for the Patriots from 2003-2007 as a linebacker on a highly respected defensive unit.  After graduation, Matt continued his education as he earned the opportunity to be a Graduate Assistant Coach and then a Full Time Assistant for the Patriots and complete his Master's Degree in education.  Rhymer's ability to pay attention to detail, grasp defensive concepts, and connect with his players has given him the opportunity to become a great coach.

"Coach Rhymer is very familiar with our university and our football program," said UC President Jim Taylor.  "He is a good Christian man and respects and understands the values that UC tries to instill in our student-athletes.  Coach Rhymer understands football players are students first and then athletes.  He has been helpful in the past as an excellent recruiter bringing many current football players to Cumberlands who have excelled both on and off the field and he is ready to step in and lead our Patriots."

After five seasons of assisting in guiding one of the better defenses in the nation at UC, along with coaching a handful of All-Americans and All-Conference players on his defensive line, he took to the high school ranks as an offensive line and defensive back coach for Oneida High School in Oneida, Tennessee.  Moving up in the ranks, Rhymer interviewed for the Head Coach opening at South Laurel High School in London, Kentucky and was chosen to guide the South Laurel Cardinals.  At South Laurel, Rhymer promoted a renewed vision for the overall football program within the school and the community and increased the team roster from 35 members in the previous season to a total of 61 players this past year.

"I'm elated to have Matt Rhymer as our new Head Football Coach," said UC Athletic Director Randy Vernon.  "Matt is a man with strong Christian values, who understands our University's mission and brings unmatched passion and enthusiasm to this job. He is a very good recruiter with strong Kentucky ties and as a former player and coach at UC, is familiar with many of our current players.  We had over 150 applicants and some very strong candidates for the position, but every time Dr. Cockrum, our Vice President for Academics, and I reviewed an application we kept coming back to Matt. He just gave us more of what we were looking for than anyone else."

Rhymer inherits a Patriot team that ended the 2013 season with a record of 13-1 with an NAIA National Championship game appearance for the first time in school history.   The season was filled with numerous broken records, a plethora of Mid-South Conference All-Conference selections, numerous All-American selections, and numerous academic awards, a team, which will go down to date, as the greatest football team in the Patriots 28 year history of football.

"I have a ton of passion, energy, and commitment to UC," said Rhymer.  "I look to continue to build a team of players that have pride, class, and character in all they do.  We will focus on the student-athlete and becoming better people and good representatives for UC.  Being able to share my faith and having the opportunity to instill Christian morals and values to build our team around Biblical principles will help us be successful in every phase of life."

Rhymer, a native of Harlan, Kentucky, is married to the former Jessica Lowrie and the couple is expecting their first child in March.

"I look forward to meeting with the team next week and getting started with our off-season training and work-outs.  We are going to continue to run our offense based on the triple option and our defense will continue to be very similar and help us win games.  I am excited to hit the trail hard recruiting local student- athletes as well as continuing with the recruitment of top regional talent.  I have no doubt that Patriot football will remain at the top."


Contact Me:

Email:  [email protected]
Office:  606-539-4451

2014 Football Roster
Roster for 2014 Football Team
#NameCl.Pos.Ht.Wt.HometownPrevious School
Cameron AbeeneJRRB  Weed, Calif.College of Siskiyous
Zach AbnerFROL6-0220East Bernstadt, Ky.North Laurel HS
Brandon AdamsJRTE6-1225Unadilla, Ga.Hawkinsville HS
Derek AkalFRDB6-1215Lynch, Ky.Harlan County HS
Nysir AllenFRWR6-0175Norcross, Ga.Norcross HS
Trevor AllenFRDL6-0280Helenwood, Tenn.Oneida HS
Nicholas AndersonFRWR  Bonaire, Ga.Veterans HS
Joe AtkinsonFROL5-11275Monticello, Ky.Wayne Co. HS
Scotty BaileyFRWR6-1200Lynch, Ky.Harlan County HS
Karry BarrFRDB5-7165Gallatin, Tenn.Gallatin HS
Daniel BassSOOL6-2300Clinton, Tenn.Oliver Springs HS
Jaelon BenjaminFRDB5-10170Albany, Ga.Westover HS
Daniel BerryFROL6-2230Stamping Ground, Ky.Scott County HS
Matthew BrooksFRQB  Stanton, Ky.Powell Co. HS
Rubin BruceFRTE  Dixon, Ky.Webster Co. HS
Diquan BrunsonFRRB5-10200Register, Ga.Statesboro HS
Timothy CherryFRWR6-0175Cincinnati, OhioMiami Valley Christian Academy
Kevin ClaussenFRRB5-8190Stamping Ground, Ky.Scott County HS
Charvis CoffeyFRDB  Lenoir City, Tenn.Farragut HS
Ryan CorderFRDL5-11240Monticello, Ky.Wayne Co. HS
Thomas DanielFRLB5-10205Georgetown, Ky.Scott Co. HS
Daven DavenportFROL5-9255Williamsburg, Ky.Whitley Co. HS
Tanner DymondFRTE5-10210Mims, Fla.Titusville Astronaut HS
Vincent ErvinFROL6-1325Valdosta, Ga.Valwood HS
Roshaud EvansFRDB  Nashville, TNNashville State CC
Austin FletcherFRTE5-11230Georgetown, Ky.Scott County HS
Eli FlorerSOLB6-1260Brooksville, Ky.Bracken County HS
Tyler HaganFRLB5-10210Berea, Ky.Madison Southern HS
Austin HallFRLB5-10200Dry Ridge, Ky.Grant Co. HS
Dustin Hicks*FRDL6-0235Sunbright, Tenn.Sunbright HS
Christopher HillFRDB  Valdosta, Ga.Lowndes HS
John HughesFRWR5-11150Mount Vernon, Ky.Rockcastle Co. HS
James KeelingFRRB5-11205Norcross, Ga.Norcross HS
Slade LambertFROL6-1225Iva, S.C.Crescent HS
Jake Laster*FRLB5-10225Franklin, Tenn.Page HS
Alex LecroyFRDB5-9180Owensboro, Ky.Daviess Co. HS
Khanan LesleyFRDB5-6158Nicholasville, Ky.East Jessamine HS
Dylan LinvilleFRDB5-10160LaVergne, Tenn.LaVergne HS
Paul LogsdonSOTE6-2205Louisville, Ky.Butler HS
Paulo MachadoJRK6-1175Sao Paulo, BrazilCam HS
Zach MannFRWR6-0160Hendersonville, Tenn.Henderson Christian Academy
Chris McgeeFRLB6-2225LaVergne, Tenn.LaVergne HS
Devantae McIntoshFRDB6-1195Actworth, Ga.River Ridge HS
Jesse MeeceFROLB  Nancy, Ky.Southwestern HS
Drew MiddletonFROLB  Harlan, Ky.Harlan HS
Devin MikelFRDB5-10145Augusta, Ga.Glenn Hill HS
Quinton MitchellFRDL  Memphis, Tenn.Manassas HS
Jeremiah MurphyFRDB5-9190Norcross, Ga.Norcross HS
Chris NieceFROL  Meally, Ky.Johnson Central HS
Taylor NorthernFRLB6-0205Athens, Ala.Athens HS
William NorthernFRK  Athens, Ala.Athens HS
Tyler PadgettSOOL6-2320Hustonville, Ky.Casey Co. HS
Huston PageFRLB  Lawrenceburg, Ky.Anderson Co. HS
Zane ParkerFROL6-1250Rogersville, Tenn.Cherokee HS
Austin Partin*FROL6-1310Jellico, Tenn.Jellico HS
Corey PhillipsFRRB5-6180Stearns, Ky.McCreary Central HS
Tanner PollardFRLB6-0205Benton, Ky.Marshall County HS
Austin RaderFRDB6-0190London, Ky.South Laurel
Jacob RollFRLB6-2205Viper, Ky.Hazard HS
Tanner RoseFRWR  Winchester, Ky.George Rogers Clark HS
Johnny SaucierSOWR5-11170Streetsboro, OhioWestern Reserve Academy
Jack SenkowitzFRLB5-10210Acworth, Ga.North Paulding HS
Ben ShoultzSOOL5-10215Shelbyville, Ky.Shelby County HS
Marques SolomonFRTE6-4205Norcross, Ga.Norcross HS
Cody SteakleyFRWR6-4205Mt. Juliet, Tenn.Wilson Central HS
McKinley StonewallFRTE  Frankfort, Ky.Frankfort HS
Bo TaylorFRWR6-1190Seneca, Ill.Seneca HS
Woody ThompsonJRDB5-10175Murfreesboro, Tenn.Middle Tenn. State Univ.
Riley TrotterFRDL  Sevierville, Tenn.Gatlinburg-Pittman HS
Davis TurnbullJRWR5-10180Roswell, Ga.Roswell HS
Simon VanderpoolFROL5-11260Woodbine, Ky.Whitley Co. HS
Rashaun WhitakerSODB5-10180Cordova, Tenn.Arlington HS
Demetrius WilliamsSOLB5-10190Chattanooga, Tenn.Red Bank HS
John WilliamsSOWR5-10170Berea, Ky.Madison Southern HS
Tanner WilliamsSOOL6-2285Goshen, Ky.North Oldham HS
Tre WinkfieldFRWR6-1170Frankfort, Ky.Frankfort HS
Justin WinklerFRDB  Kissimmee, Fla.Liberty HS
Keylon WoodardFRDB5-10190Cartersville, Ga.Cass HS
Devin WoodsFRDB5-7160Palm Beach, Fla.Palm Beach State
1Marcus SnipesSRWR6-2195Severn, Md.Mercyhurst College
2Hunter LewisJRRB5-8195Dunlap, Tenn.Sequatchie County HS
3DJ RozierSORB5-8160Wrightsville, Ga.Johnson County HS
5Keith DeVeauxJRRB6-0200McDonough, Ga.Atlanta Sports Academy
6Juantez HartsfieldSRDL6-3275Griffin, Ga.University of West Alabama
7Adam CraigSOQB6-0235Jackson, Tenn.Northside HS
8Ricardo LyonsSORB5-10195Forsyth, Ga.Middle Georgia State
9Demetrius BrownJRRB5-6170Weed, Calif.College of Siskiyous
9Kody ThornsberryFRRB5-8150West Liberty, Ky.Morgan Co. HS
10Wendall WilliamsSOWR5-11170Syracuse, N.Y.Herkmier CC
11Hunter ComerSOQB6-1180Henderson, Ky.Henderson Co. HS
12Arrico OgletreeJRDB5-8175Forsyth, Ga.Middle Georgia State
13Cory ClarkSRDB6-2190Seymour, Tenn.Seymour HS
14Kevin KennedyJRDB5-9180Seymour, Tenn.Seymour HS
15Randy MaynardJRQB6-0225Pikeville, Ky.Pikeville HS
16Brandon FordSODB5-9175Winston Salem, N.C.Parkland HS
17Dequan WilsonFRRB5-9160Greeneville, Tenn.Greeneville HS
18Ace RayFRWR6-2175Danville, Ky.Danville HS
19Aaron MorganFRDB5-10160Florence, Ky.Randall K. Cooper HS
20Seth BrewtonSRDB5-11180Corryton, Tenn.Gibbs HS
21Antonio GilliamFRDB6-0170Memphis, Tenn.SW Vocational Tech
22Chad BondSRWR5-11195Tullahoma, Tenn.Tullahoma HS
23Matt JewellSODB5-9190Corbin, Ky.Corbin HS
24Cody PerkinsSRDS6-1180Williamsburg, Ky.Williamsburg HS
25Blake IngletonFRRB6-2220Canton, Ga. Dean College
26Christian BlackSOWR5-10170Indianapolis, Ind.Barton CC
27Kadarius GarrettFRRB5-8180Norcross, Ga.Norcross HS
29Lucas LunsfordSODB6-0170Kingston, Tenn.Harriman HS
30Seph BurkeFRLB5-10185Danville, Ky.Boyle Co. HS
31Christopher LatimoreFRRB6-0200Walton, Ky.Walton Verona HS
33Corey WashingtonSODB5-11205Knoxville, Tenn.Clinton HS
34Cole RussellSORB5-8185Rogersville, Tenn.Cherokee HS
35Jimmy PrestonSOLB6-0195Oil Springs, Ky.Johnson Central HS
37Zach BalusikJRTE5-11235Greensburg, Ind.Greensburg HS
38Erico SmithJRDB5-11200Fisherville, Ky.University of Kentucky
40Trenton CouchFRDL6-1220Smyrna, Tenn.Smyrna HS
41Chanco EstesFRLB5-11200Martinsville, Va.Magna Vista HS
42Robert McCormickSRLB5-11200Louisville, KyPleasure Ridge Park HS
43Nick PetersFRLB5-11215Murfreesboro, Tenn.Siegel HS
44Jacob VanMeterFRDL6-2225Georgetown, Ky.Scott Co. HS
45Taylor ZiakFRLB5-11220Toney, Ala.Madison Academy
46Andrew RootSOLB5-10210Williamsburg, Ky.Williamsburg HS
47Murphy HagenFRDL5-11225Carrollton, Ga.Carrollton HS
48Bryce BellJRLB5-11225Dallas, Ga.East Paulding HS
54Connor McJunkenFROL6-0250Niceville, Fla.Niceville HS
55Jonathan MorrellJROL6-0260Warner Robbins, Ga.Perry HS
56Payton ClawsonFROL6-1270Owasso, Okla.Owasso HS
57Carson NewmanJRDL6-1245Jefferson, Ga.Jefferson HS
58Daniel EngeSOOL6-0260Roseville, Minn.Roseville Area HS
59Christian DeanFROL6-1285Macon, Ga.Westside HS
60Sam HurstJROL5-10245Dacula, GADacula HS
61Aaron CaldwellFROL6-3230Baxter, Ky.Harlan County HS
62Jeffery RobersonJRDS5-11225Copperhill, Tenn.Copper Basin HS
63John FultonSOOL6-2270Siler, Ky.Whitley County HS
67Tor PetersonJROL6-2255Cumming, Ga.Lambert HS
70Tan HudsonSOOL6-6315Annville, Ky.Bell Co. HS
71Mathew SmithersSOOL6-1330Huntsville, Tenn.Scott HS
72Austin SmithSROL6-2270Knoxville, Tenn.Powell HS
73Tyler ElliottSOOL6-3260Loudon, Tenn.Loudon HS
78Josh EverhartSOOL6-2280Morristown, Tenn.Morristown East HS
80Weston HayesFRWR5-9180Murfreesboro, Tenn.Siegel HS
84Taylor WaddleFRWR6-2190Corbin, Ky.Corbin HS
86Joe RoseFRK6-2175Lawrenceburg, Ky.Anderson Co. HS
87Blake NolanSRK5-11170Louisville, Ky.Ballard HS
88Alonzo ScottFRP5-11155Frankfort, Ky.Frankfort HS
89John PadillaFRP5-8150Statesboro, Ga.Bulloch Academy
90B.J. ChanceyJRDL6-3260Locust Grove, Ga.Strong Rock Christian School
91Zack BullSRDE6-3250McDonough, Ga.Ola HS
92Jimmy CarmanSODL6-3220McDonough, Ga.Ola HS
94Brandon LawsonFRDL5-11230Williamsburg, Ky.Whitley Co. HS
95Marcus SaundersFRLB6-1235Fort Benning, Ga.Chattahoochee Co. HS
97Jamison FrazierSODT6-2285Murfreesboro, Tenn.Siegel HS
* Redshirt
Matt Rhymer Image
Head Coach
1st season
Paul Pitts Image
Assistant Coach
1st season
Daniel Cotter Image
Assistant Coach
3rd season
Phillip Wells Image
Assistant Coach
2nd season
Stephen Wells Image
Assistant Coach
2nd season
Colby Hitchcock Image
Assistant Coach
2nd season
Charles Cornett Image
Assistant Coach
1st season
Nick Smith Image
Assistant Coach
1st season
Ryan Northcutt Image
Assistant Coach
1st season
Zeke Eier Image
Student Assistant
1st season
Joey Baldasano Image
2nd season
Hunter Cleary Image
2nd season
Jessica Horning Image
1st season
Cassie Brown Image
1st season
Drew Bruce Image
1st season
Gabe Veazy Image
1st season