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Introducing Trent Miles, Head Football Coach

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Trent Miles was introduced as the new head coach of the Georgia State football program on Monday, December 3, at the GSU Sports Arena. Below is the transcript of the press conference. For more information on Coach Miles, click here.

Atlanta Journal Constitution on Monday

President Mark Becker

"Today is an important day for the future of Georgia State University.

"In January we will enter our Centennial year - throughout 2013 we will celebrate 100 years of change and progress by our institution. Georgia State has become a critically important player in shaping the future for Atlanta, and for Georgia.  

"As we prepare to enter our Second Century, a century that we know will see the university continue its remarkable rise in stature and importance, we also see a bright future for Panther Football. We've had football for only three seasons of our 100 years, but we look forward with anticipation and great expectations as we move into the Football Bowl Subdivision and the Sun Belt Conference.

"A vibrant athletics program is an important component of campus life, and here in Georgia everyone knows the importance of college football. The changes of we have seen on campus since that first game in August 2010 have been nothing short of astonishing, and our alumni continually tell me how thrilled they are that we finally have football at Georgia State. The best is yet to come.

"With the conclusion of the 2012 season the important next step for Panther Football was the hiring of the coach who will take us into the Sun Belt Conference. I am pleased to say that we've found a man with the experience, passion and energy necessary to make us successful at that next level. We've recruited a coach who knows how to build a winning program, and who does it the right way - with high-quality student-athletes who will represent us well, and with distinction in the community.

"I am personally delighted with our newest addition to the Panther Family, and I know you will be too. To introduce the new head coach of Georgia State football to the Panther Nation, I invite to the podium Georgia State's Director of Athletics, Cheryl Levick.

Director of Athletics Cheryl L. Levick

Opening comments

"Thank you Dr. Becker. Good morning ladies and gentlemen. I would like to begin my comments with a thank you to everyone in this room today because all of you believed in this football program from day one and have supported it the last few years. Specifically, I want to thank Coach Curry, his players and his staff, every player and their parents, President Becker and his cabinet members, my senior staff, my athletic administration staff, every donor and every fan, the band and spirit groups, and every student, faculty member and staff member at Georgia State. This football program would simply not exist without the support and hard work from all of you.

"Today marks the beginning of the second chapter of Georgia State football. This chapter is extremely important to the long-term success of this program. As you know, we're moving to the Sun Belt next fall and to the Football Bowl Subdivision. The infrastructure of the Georgia State football program has been completed. Now is the time to build the last piece of this puzzle and find the right leader for the next chapter of our program and establish a winning tradition.

"We searched for a program builder and someone to put all the pieces together and maximize our tremendous potential. The term program builder encompasses many things. I was looking for a dynamic leader, a tireless recruiter, an experienced and innovative coach, a strong mentor and role model for the young men in our program and a football CEO to move this program forward in every area, on and off the field.

'More than just records and resumes, I was looking for the right fit for Georgia State University at this time. There is no doubt we have found exactly the right fit.

"Trent Miles is the program builder who will surround himself with the right staff and who will set high academic, disciplinary and performance standards for our players. And he will simply go after it with his limitless energy. He brings over 21 years of coaching experience from the collegiate and professional ranks.

"During the interview process, Trent shared a very impressive and detailed plan for Georgia State. It really was a comprehensive blueprint for creating a winning program on the field, in the classroom and in the community. Trent is a strong family man and we are so happy to have all of his family here today. He stressed family values at Indiana State with strong discipline and accountability, and a commitment to be involved in the community. He will do the exact same thing here. His motto is, "Team before self."

"Trent is the right person at the right time to establish a winning tradition for Georgia State football. We are delighted to welcome Trent and his family to Georgia State University.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome, Trent Miles.

On the coaching search...
"James Greenwell, Todd Reeser and I on the committee put together a list and looked at what Parker Executive Search could do with their national database. On every list, Trent was on there from different sources. We do that on purpose to look at three different areas and pull it through, and Trent was on all three. We were hopeful that he was interested because we were certainly interested in him. That's how we established and identified Trent. Then through our networks we turned over every rock and every stone. Every place we went and every person we called said he is the real thing and that he was what we needed to get this program to the next level. He is tireless with his energy and he has high integrity. He is certainly the right person.

On when she knew Trent Miles was the right fit for GSU...
"He was on the number one list from the very beginning. He originated on that list and stayed on that list. As people came on that list and exited that list, he stayed on there. When we brought all the candidates in for interviews, James, Todd and I interviewed all the candidates in the morning of each day and then had President Becker come back with me and re-interview them at night. Trent would knock our socks off in the morning, and then when he met with President Becker, it was absolutely clear. Everybody was great, but it was clear. He had done his homework and he saw himself as a fit here as well.

On the future of the Sun Belt Conference...
I am excited about the future of the Sun Belt. First, I want to say how excited I am about four teams from the Sun Belt are competing in bowl games. That's exciting and it's historic. We want to be one of those teams as soon as we can get our team ready. We're pleased about that progress. I expect this week or sometime soon for Commissioner Benson to get us on a call to survey the situation and look at some options. I still feel that we are in the right conference and we can be very successful in football and Sun Belt football.

On the hiring process...
"When Coach Curry announced his retirement in August, we had a long time to think about this process. We contracted with Parker earlier than normal. We wanted to get a jump on the search. It was more important, as we watched the number of coaches that were let go, that we stay ahead of the game. We wanted to find the right coach and get him hired sooner rather than later. We knew Coach Miles was being chased by other programs and we wanted to beat them out, and we did. I feel like we did a great job hiring Coach Miles from all aspects of the university and athletics.

Head Coach Trent Miles

Opening Statement...
"It is an honor and a privilege to stand here before you as your new head football coach. I am extremely excited but also very thankful. I want to thank President Becker and Cheryl Levick for giving me this great opportunity. I'd be crazy for not thanking Indiana State University for giving me my first head coaching job and most importantly the players who believed in what we were doing and went out and did it. We had a great team meeting and the first thing I told the players was 'it's time to win.' We expect to win on and off the football field. That is what we want to do as a program. We want the total development of the student-athlete. I am a man of integrity and character and I believe that those are the type of young men we will recruit; young men who will be involved in the community, will do their job academically and play great football. That's why we're here. I believe we have the talent pool to build upon. Coach Curry started something special here and I want to thank him for that. He is a man of integrity and is a legend in our profession. We want to carry on and go into the Sun Belt. We truly believe that we can win and build a product that you are proud of. I am looking forward to putting together my staff. You may be surprised with some of the people we are bringing in. I believe this is the hotbed of football and I couldn't ask for a better situation to be in as far as recruiting. There are players here and this is a great opportunity to represent Georgia State University with fine young men who will make you proud."

On why he left his alma mater to come to Georgia State...
"The people here. It's a great opportunity and I see unlimited growth here. There is a vision, not just for now but for the future. And what a great area to live in. The people are what makes things go. It's not about the stadium or the uniforms. It's about the people. I've been blessed all of my life to be around great people. I see this is as another step in the right direction to join the Sun Belt and to compete for championships."

On his coaching staff...
"I am not at liberty right now to give out any names because of the hiring procedures. But I will put together a staff that you will be very proud of, and you might be shocked with some of the people that might be on it. They will be great role models, great recruiters and will put us in a position to win football games. They will get the most out of their young men and will care about our players. We aren't just coaches. We are no different from the professors on campus -- we are teachers. We just teach a different subject.

On the pressures he faces...
"Nobody puts more pressure on me than me. I don't feel pressure other than what I put on myself to succeed. There are no outside influences that are going to force that. First thing we said was that we wanted to teach the young men how to compete. Then we want to teach them how to win and then how to win championships. We want to win right now, we don't want to wait."

On the recruiting...
"You have to base with high school, but you also have to recruit junior college and prep schools. You need young men who can come in and help you immediately. We will never get away from basing our recruiting with high school students. You just have to go off of what you need, where are you lacking. That's where we will look first. The most important thing I can do is meet with the team. The biggest recruits we have are the players already on the team. We want to make sure that they understand their role and how important they are to this university. I want to I recruit those guys first."

On his football strategy...
"My philosophy is to win and score points. I'm been in the option, in the spread, in the West Coach offense. To me, it is building around your players' talents. At Indiana State my first year, we threw it all the time and scored. The last two years we ran it because we had the nation's best running back and a big offensive line. We want to be tough and aggressive, but we also want to be balanced. There are games where you might have to throw it 50 times to win and there are other games where you have to run it 45 times to win. It depends on the situation. We talked to the players about adapting and overcoming. It is a multiple offense with multiple formations and fits our players."

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