DEFENSIVE COACHING STAFF
MARCUS PATTON | DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR
When the 2018 football season begins, Marcus Patton will start his third season as the defensive coordinator and secondary coach for Texan Football.
In his debut season with the purple and white, Patton went to work in turning around a Tarleton defense that surrendered the most yards in school history the season before. In Patton’s debut season, the Texans improved dramatically by improving their points and yards allowed by large margins. The Texans saw an improvement of 120.9 yards and 13.5 points per game from 2015 to 2016 under Patton in his debut campaign, including a starring showcase against Eastern New Mexico on Oct. 15, 2016 when Patton’s defense held the No. 2-ranked rushing offense to 100 yards below its season average in a 26-16 road victory.
He coached Tarleton’s Cody Burtscher to one of the most decorated seasons by a single player in school history as the senior was named first-team All-LSC, All-Region, AFCA All-America, and the Lone Star Conference Linebacker of the Year under Patton’s leadership. In addition to Burtscher, Patton’s defense also boasted EJ Speed, who earned second-team honors and led the nation in forced fumbles, as well as honorable mention All-LSC players Dominique Martin, Chase Varnado, Basil Jackson, and Treston Ridge.
He followed that up in 2017 by keeping the Texan Defense among the top four in the Lone Star Conference in Scoring Defense (27.8). Tarleton held six of its 12 opponents in 2017 to 24 points or fewer, which included keeping Western Oregon to a season-low six points in the Homecoming Game.
In his two seasons at Tarleton, Patton has coached a large share of All-Conference athletes. Including Burtscher in 2016, Patton has had 12 different All-LSC honors. In 2017, junior DT Tyrell Thompson joined the elite list of Tarleton All-Americans after being named a Don Hansen national honorable mention award winner.
Patton came to Tarleton after spending the 2014-15 seasons as the defensive coordinator at Colorado Mesa. In 2015, his Maverick defense was one of the best in the nation and finished in the top-10 in the country in multiple defensive categories including: fourth-down conversion defense, defensive touchdowns scored, and turnover margin with 28 defensive takeaways including 19 interceptions. Mesa also finished No. 11 in the nation in red-zone defense and No. 12 in the nation in scoring defense after allowing just 17.8 points per game.
“In today’s football, there’s going to be a lot of offense,” said Patton. “People are going to score points in today’s game, but you have to be able to play good enough defense to give yourself a chance to win the game in the fourth quarter. It’s unrealistic to think that you can hold teams to the zero-to-three-point range, but we want to keep it manageable and give ourselves a chance to win the game. We’re going to do that with fundamental defense.
“I think one of my big strengths is teaching the fundamentals,” he continued. “We need to be able to tackle, be tough, and fly around. You can talk schematics all you want, but I’m a believer that you win football games with tackling and taking on blocks.”
Patton, who has also spent time as a collegiate assistant coach at Fairmont State, Seton Hill, UCLA, Indiana State, and South Florida, played football for Kansas State University from 2000-04. He joins former Wildcat, Jonathan Beasley, on the Tarleton coaching staff and was a student-athlete when Assistant Athletic Director for Athletic Performance Rod Cole was the head strength and conditioning coach for Coach Bill Snyder’s team. Patton was also teammates with NFL athletes Darren Sproles, Jordy Nelson, and Terrence Newman.
"Patton was an outstanding player at Kansas State and he's proven to be an outstanding coach. I'm very excited to have him at Tarleton," said Cole.
A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Patton earned a bachelor’s degree in social science from Kansas State and then went on to coach four seasons at the high school level in Florida before returning to the college ranks as a defensive assistant. In his career, he has coached numerous all-conference players and had an NCAA All-American at Colorado Mesa in 2015. He has had over 10 former players continue their careers at the NFL level and was responsible for recruiting even more that went on to play professionally.
“I'm excited to be at Tarleton and coach alongside Coach Whitten because he is a winner,” said Patton. “He has won here before. He showed me the vision of this school, and also being able to recruit football in the state of Texas, were big draws to making this decision for me. This is an opportunity where special things can be accomplished. I’m a competitor and this is an opportunity for me to come in and potentially win a national championship.”
MARC MARTINEZ | Assistant Football Coach (LB)
When the 2018 football season begins, Marc Martinez will begin his second season as a full-time linebackers’ coach for Tarleton state, first season as the program’s Summer Camp Director, and fourth season with the Texan coaching staff overall after spending two seasons as a graduate assistant coach.
In his first full-time season in 2017, Martinez helped coach Basil Jackson into one of the top linebackers in the country. Jackson led the nation in tackles per game for most of the season and finished the season as an All-LSC Second Team and all-region award winner.
Over his two seasons as a graduate assistant coach, Martinez helped turn former running back Cody Burtscher into one of the most decorated Texans to don the purple and white. Under Martinez’s leadership, Burtscher finished his senior season as a first-team All-LSC, all-region, and AFCA All-America selection as well as being named the Lone Star Conference Linebacker of the Year in 2016.
Martinez made the transition from the gridiron to the sidelines following a stellar four-year playing career for the Texans, including an all-conference senior season as the team’s leading tackler.
He was a two-time all-LSC linebacker capped off by his senior campaign when he topped the 100-tackle mark to lead the Texans. He made 44 solo stops while assisting on 66 and leading the nation with four fumble recoveries. He also made 5.5 tackles behind the line of scrimmage in his swan song season for the Purple and White.
For his career, Martinez played in 35 games over three seasons and was a part of the 2013 Lone Star Conference Championship team. He amassed two interceptions, four forced fumbles and five fumble recoveries in his career while making 253 total tackles, including 119 solo stops. He made 17.0 tackles for a loss in his career and deflected seven passes.
Martinez graduated with his undergraduate degree and master’s degree from Tarleton. He currently resides in Granbury with his fiancé, Lacie, and daughter, Estella.