Brian Baker, a 19-year NFL coaching veteran and the former outside linebackers coach for the Washington Redskins, has been named defensive line coach for Mississippi State football, head coach Dan Mullen announced Tuesday.
“Brian brings an outstanding resume to Mississippi State both at the professional and college levels,” Mullen said. “In his 30 years of coaching, he has developed and worked with All-Pros to All-Americans. He shared with me his passion for getting back to the collegiate level and making an impact on young lives. We are thrilled to have him in Starkville.”
Baker joins the Bulldogs with 30 years of coaching experience to his credit, including the last 19 years in the NFL. He’s coached eight Pro Bowlers, including the likes of DeMarcus Ware and Julius Peppers. He spent the 2014 season with the Redskins as outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan recorded a career-best 13.5 sacks under Baker’s tutelage.
“I am so excited to be back coaching the college game and making an impact on young men on and off the field,” Baker said. “Mississippi State has established a winning tradition under Coach Mullen’s leadership. I have always admired what his teams have accomplished watching from afar. The effort and intensity the Bulldogs have played with really jumps off the TV while watching at home. It’s a privilege to now be a Bulldog and go to work every day here.”
Prior to his year in Washington, he served as the Cleveland Browns’ outside linebackers coach, helping the Browns finish third in the AFC and ninth in the NFL in total defense (332.4 yards per game).
Baker spent the 2011-12 seasons as the defensive line coach with the Dallas Cowboys. Under Baker, nose tackle Jay Ratliff earned a Pro Bowl selection in 2012. Baker also contributed to the Pro Bowl selections of linebackers Ware and Anthony Spencer as part of his responsibilities overseeing the pass rush.
Prior to his time in Dallas, Baker spent two seasons as the Carolina Panthers’ defensive line coach from 2009-10. In 2010, defensive end Charles Johnson led the Panthers with 11.5 sacks, tied for the fourth-most in the NFL. In 2009, defensive end Peppers led the team with 10.5 sacks en route to a Pro Bowl selection.
Baker coached the St. Louis Rams’ defensive line from 2006-08. In 2008, his unit notched 20 of the team’s 30 sacks. In 2006, defensive end Leonard Little tied for fifth in the league with 13.0 sacks, while defensive tackle La’Roi Glover finished sixth among NFC defensive tackles with 5.5 sacks.
From 2001-05, Baker worked in various capacities for the Minnesota Vikings, serving as defensive line coach in 2001 and 2004-05 and as linebackers coach from 2002-03. He helped defensive tackle Kevin Williams earn his first of six Pro Bowl selections following the 2004 season. That season, Williams recorded a career-best 11.5 sacks and was selected to the AP All-Pro team. Along with Williams, defensive end Lance Johnstone totaled 11 sacks in 2004 to give the Vikings the third-most prolific sack duo in the league that year with 22.5.
Baker was the Detroit Lions’ defensive line coach from 1997-2000, spearheading defensive linemen Robert Porcher (1997 and 1999) and Luther Elliss (1999 and 2000) to Pro Bowl selections. In 1999, Porcher registered 15 sacks, the most by any Lion in a single-season since sacks became official in 1982.
Baker made his NFL coaching debut as the defensive line coach with the San Diego Chargers in 1996 after spending 12 years on the collegiate level. He had stints at Georgia Tech (1987-95), Army (1986) and Maryland (1984-85).
The highlight of his nine years as linebackers coach at Georgia Tech came in 1990. The Yellow Jackets claimed the 1990 National Championship as the nation’s only unbeaten team with an 11-0-1 record. Tech defeated Nebraska 45–21 in the 1991 Citrus Bowl to complete the unbeaten season.
A native of Baltimore, Maryland, Baker played outside linebacker at the University of Maryland from 1980-83 and helped the Terps win the Atlantic Coast Conference in 1983. After his playing career, he helped coach outside linebackers as a student coach and graduate assistant from 1984-85 and earned a degree in marketing in 1985.
Baker and his wife, Nevada, have three daughters, Nicole, Jade and Jasmine.
2016-present: Mississippi State (Defensive Line)
2015: Covenant Christian Academy of Colleyville (Texas) (Assistant Coach/Mentor)
2014: Washington Redskins (Outside Linebackers)
2013: Cleveland Browns (Outside Linebackers)
2011-12: Dallas Cowboys (Defensive Line)
2009-10: Carolina Panthers (Defensive Line)
2006-08: St. Louis Rams (Defensive Line)
2004-05: Minnesota Vikings (Defensive Line)
2002-03: Minnesota Vikings (Linebackers)
2001: Minnesota Vikings (Defensive Line)
1997-2000: Detroit Lions (Defensive Line)
1996: San Diego Chargers (Defensive Line)
1995: Georgia Tech (Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers)
1987-94: Georgia Tech (Linebackers)
1986: Army (Fullbacks)
1985: Maryland (Graduate Assistant)
1984: Maryland (Student Assistant)
(From MSU Media Relations)