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NC Central alumnus Trei Oliver hired to lead new Eagles football era
Former Southern defensive coordinator takes over
Published Thursday, December 20, 2018 12:18 pm
by Herbert L. White | The Charlotte Post

North Carolina Central football coach Trei Oliver was an all-CIAA punter and safety with the Eagles during his playing days.

Trei Oliver is heading home.

North Carolina Central’s new football coach is familiar with the Eagles program as a player and assistant coach. After earning CIAA titles with NCCU, he’s back to launch a new era.

“It’s good to be back home. It’s good to be back in the nest,” Oliver said last week. “Central is so special to me because of the great people that I met here as a student-athlete. When you are around good people, it’s easy to be successful.”

Oliver, who replaces interim coach Granville Eastman, has five championship rings as a player and coach, including five conference titles and three black college national championships. Oliver joins NCCU from Southern, where he was defensive coordinator for three years, including a SWAC West championship in 2018. He also has previous experience at Grambling State and North Carolina A&T. As an NCCU assistant coach from 2003-06, he helped the Eagles win CIAA championships in 2005 and 2006.

In 15 seasons at four different programs, Oliver has been part of only one season with fewer than seven wins. His teams have averaged eight wins a season during that span and a winning percentage of .725.

“I want to build a championship culture at NCCU,” said Oliver. “We need to get ‘Eagle Pride’ back in the program. When I talk about Eagle Pride, I’m talking about unity and discipline. If we’ll fight for one another and we have discipline in our program, then the sky is the limit.”

Prior to Southern, Oliver was outside linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator at A&T from 2011-15, when the Aggies shared MEAC titles in 2014 and 2015, capped by the HBCU national championship .

As Grambling’s outside linebackers coach, recruiting coordinator and special teams coordinator from 2007-10, the Tigers won two SWAC West division titles, and the black college football national title in 2008.

Oliver’s first coaching stint at NCCU was as a defensive backs and wide receivers coach, recruiting coordinator and special teams coordinator from 2003-06, helping the Eagles win back-to-back CIAA championships and berths in the NCAA Division II playoffs in 2005 and 2006. The 2006 squad won the HBCU title with an 11-1 season in 2006.

Oliver started his college coaching career at Delaware State as defensive backs coach and assistant special teams coordinator from 1999-2002.

Oliver twice led the CIAA in punting, including a 41.7-yard average in 1997, which ranks fifth on the Eagles’ all-time single season list. As a junior in 1996, he was part of a defensive backfield that led NCAA Division II in pass defense efficiency. As a senior, earned All-South Region designation as a first-team defensive back and second-team punter.

He earned all-CIAA first- or second-team each of his four seasons.

Oliver is the third NCCU alumnus to lead the football program. Bishop Harris (1963) coached the Eagles from 1991-92, and Herman Riddick (1933) won a school record 112 games from 1945-1964.


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