The school announced Tuesday that Pro Football Hall of Famer Ed Reed has agreed in principle to become the head football coach at Bethune-Cookman.
Reed does not have a lengthy coaching resume, but he did spend one season in the NFL as an assistant defensive backs coach and has been the chief of staff at his alma mater, Miami, for the past three seasons.
Being hired at Bethune-Cookman is part of a recent trend of Historically Black Colleges hiring well-known former NFL players, which began with Deion Sanders at Jackson State and will continue with Tennessee State hiring Eddie George in 2021.
Reed actually has more college football experience than Sanders did when he took over at Jackson State, having worked with both Manny Diaz and Mario Cristobal in an undefined role that included quality control and player development. Reed, 44, had stated his desire to become a full-time coach while at Miami.
Bethune-Cookman, located in Daytona Beach, Florida, was the MEAC’s dominant programme from 2010 to 2015, winning two Black College Football national championships, but has recently struggled. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Bethune-Cookman did not play in 2020, moved to the SWAC for 2021, and fired coach Terry Sims in November after his second consecutive 2-9 season.
Reed is widely regarded as one of the best safeties of all time, having been named to five first-team All-Pro teams and nine Pro Bowls. He led the NFL in interceptions three times, was named defensive player of the year in 2004, and helped the Baltimore Ravens win a Super Bowl.