EAST LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State football head coach Mark Dantonio has hired Don Treadwell back onto his staff after Treadwell previously served as MSU’s offensive coordinator from 2007-2010.
Treadwell was hired to assist in coaching the defensive backs and special teams unit, while also consulting on offense. Treadwell will serve as a freshman head coach, a new title given to support first-year players in their maturation and development both on the field and off it.
Treadwell spent the past four seasons coaching under new defensive backs coach Paul Haynes at Kent State, where he spent his first year coaching the running backs and his last three years as an offensive coordinator.
“We’re very excited to have Don Treadwell back at MSU,” Dantonio said. “This will be the fifth different time that we’ve worked together on staff, going back to Youngstown State, Cincinnati, and now three times at Michigan State. He did a tremendous job as offensive coordinator during my first seven years as a head coach, calling all the plays.”
Treadwell returns to East Lansing for his third term with over 30 years of coaching experience under his belt. He spent three years with MSU from 2000-2002 coaching the wide receivers and was part of the Spartans’ first Big Ten Championship and 10-win season in 2010 when he called plays for Dantonio.
“I’m tremendously excited to rejoin and reconnect with the Spartan football family,” Treadwell said. “When I think back to my previous time at MSU, there are so many cherished memories; this is such a special place. All three of our kids graduated from East Lansing High School, which doesn’t happen in our profession too often, and two of our three kids hold MSU degrees. So this truly kind of a homecoming and an exciting opportunity that I’m really embracing.”
In 2010, Treadwell helped MSU become one of two teams from the conference to rank among the top five in the regular season in national scoring (30.1 PPG), passing (237.8 ypg), rushing (168.8 ypg) and total offense (406.7 ypg). Treadwell was also nominated for the Broyles Award, an award given out to the nation’s top assistant.
Treadwell and Haynes will have quite the defensive unit to work with this season. The very young Spartan secondary was 32nd in the nation with 14 interceptions on the year and 37th nationally in passing yards allowed, allowing 202.3 yards per game. The unit returns nine of 11 starters from 2017’s group, losing linebacker and team captain Chris Frey as well as end Demetrius Cooper.
“Our defense has been at the top in the nation for a number of years, so to plug in from that perspective, learning from one of the best defensive minds in the country with Coach D, is exciting,” Treadwell said. “During his time as a coordinator and head coach, I’ve seen him develop players all along the line, and then with him, you also see him develop coaches.”
The hiring of Treadwell gives Dantonio his ninth coaching spot on his staff. With the NCAA recently allowing a tenth assistant to be brought onto the staff, Dantonio has hopes to fill that remaining vacancy by the end of the week.