Clarksville, TN – With Austin Peay State University football set to open camp this weekend, new head coach Kirby Cannon has announced two promotions within his staff.
Longtime defensive coordinator Granville Eastman now has the title of assistant head coach while Marcus Gildersleeve, who has been an offensive assistant for the past seven seasons, now will hold the title of offensive coordinator.
Eastman came to APSU from Tiffin (Ohio) in spring 2003 as secondary coach and a year later he was elevated to defensive coordinator. The Toronto, Canada native has impressed enough to now be working for his third APSU head coach.
“With his (previous) 10 years of service to Austin Peay football and with the great help that he was in the transition to me being head coach and just how the players view him, the title of assistant head coach is appropriate for Granville,” Cannon said. “I have complete confidence that if a decision needs to be made and I am not in the area he is going to make the right one for the program and the one for me.”
Gildersleeve came to APSU from Nebraska-Omaha in 2005 as cornerbacks coach. A year later he was named wide receivers coach, a position he has held until recently when he was shifted to running backs coach.
“Marcus finished last season calling the plays—he was the player caller in the two victories,” Cannon said. “He proved to me in the spring he was capable of doing the offensive coordinator responsibilities. He earned the respect and confidence of our team with his work during the spring.
“A lot of times when things are not going great you find out what people are about. Our offense got off to a tough start this spring but I thought he was able to keep it directed on improvement. Certainly in the spring game they were a better unit. I expect him to a very good job week-in, week-out preparing our offense to be competitive on Saturdays.”
In addition, Brandon Jordan, who played offensive line for Kirby Cannon at Missouri S&T and later played professionally in the arena league and overseas, will serve as graduate assistant working with the offensive line and tight ends.
The New Orleans native was recruited by Cannon and was a starter at offensive tackle during the 2007 season before suffering a severe hamstring injury at Missouri State in Game 2. He regained his starting spot in 2008. In 2010 he transferred to Northern Michigan for his final year of eligibility. He suffered the same 2007 hamstring injury again and never played the Wildcats.
He later played arena football and in Europe before an assortment of injuries ended his playing career.