GSU Taps Valdosta State Coach

VALDOSTA, Ga. (AP) - Georgia Southern University has named a new coach.

Valdosta State University head football coach Chris Hatcher resigned his position today to accept an offer to be head coach at Georgia Southern.

The Eagles wasted no time lining up a replacement for Brian VanGorder, who stepped down on Tuesday after only one season in Statesboro.

VanGorder left to become linebacker coach for the Atlanta Falcons.

VanGorder guided the Eagles to a 3 and 8 record in his lone season, the first losing record since 1996 for a program that has won six NCAA Division I-AA titles.

The 33-year-old Hatcher is a native of Macon who went on to an outstanding career as a quarterback at Valdosta State. He then went into coaching, working as an assistant at Central Florida and Kentucky before returning to his alma mater.

Hatcher has a 76 and 12 record in seven years as the Blazers coach. He led the school to its first Division Two national championship in 2004.

Hatcher leaves Valdosta State as the school's all-time winningest coach both in terms of the number of victories and in winning percentage. Hatcher led the school to 76 wins against just 12 losses during his seven seasons with the school.