Feb. 14, 2008
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- Big Ten Network Analysis of Iowa’s Recruiting Class
IOWA CITY – Erik Campbell, who most recently served as assistant head coach and wide receivers coach at Michigan, has been named interim wide receivers and tight ends coach at the University of Iowa. The announcement came Thursday from Head Coach Kirk Ferentz.
Campbell has 20 years of coaching experience, with the last 13 at Michigan. He was responsible for the wide receiving corps and worked with the team’s punt returners for all 13 seasons. Campbell added the title of assistant head coach prior to the start of the 2003 season.
“We are very excited to have Erik join our staff,” said Ferentz. “Erik grew up in the Midwest, enjoyed a very successful career as a Big Ten student-athlete and has established an impressive coaching resume, including the past 13 years at his alma mater. Lloyd Carr and many others that I visited with spoke highly of Erik’s teaching and communication skills, his football expertise, his recruiting efforts and also his ability to be a team player.
“While I am thrilled to have a coach with Erik’s experience and expertise joining our staff, I am even more excited about the quality of person he is,” added Ferentz. “I am very confident Erik will serve as a tremendous role model for our players and be an outstanding fit in our Iowa community.”
Campbell had a 1,000-yard receiver an NCAA record eight straight seasons (1998-2005), with Braylon Edwards becoming the ninth player in Division I-A history and the first player in Big Ten history to achieve three straight 1,000-yard seasons. The streak of 1,000-yard receivers came to an end in 2006, but a record three Wolverines gained over 500 yards for the first time in school history. Mario Manningham led the team with 703 yards and nine touchdowns, followed closely by Steve Breaston (670 yards, two TDs) and Adrian Arrington (544 yards, eight TDs).
Campbell was a key factor in the punt return success of Breaston, the Big Ten’s career punt return leader. Breaston returned 127 punts for a conference record 1,599 yards (12.6 avg.) and four scores during his career.
Campbell coached three All-Americans during his tenure at Michigan — David Terrell, Marquise Walker and Edwards — and had four players receive the Bo Schembechler Most Valuable Player team award. Campbell’s players have earned All-Big Ten honors 15 times, including eight first-team citations and seven second-team honors. Michigan had a streak of nine straight seasons with at least one all-conference selection through 2007.
Campbell joined the Michigan staff on February 20, 1995 and has coached some of Michigan’s top wide receivers. His list of NFL products includes: Amani Toomer, a second-round draft pick of the New York Giants (1996); Mercury Hayes, a fifth-round pick of the New Orleans Saints (1996); 1997 Heisman Trophy winner Charles Woodson, a first-round pick of the Oakland Raiders (1998); Tai Streets, a fifth-round pick of the San Francisco 49ers (1999); Marcus Knight, a free agent pickup of the Oakland Raiders (2000); Terrell, the eighth pick of the 2001 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears; Walker, a third-round selection by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2002); free agent signee Ronald Bellamy by the Miami Dolphins (2003); Edwards, the third pick of the 2005 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns and Jason Avant, a fourth-round pick of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2006.
Campbell was a four-year letterman (1984-87) at Michigan and boasts starts on both sides of the ball. The Wolverines compiled a 35-13-1 record and won the 1986 Big Ten title while Campbell was a squad member. He is the only player in Michigan football history to start at all four secondary positions in one year.
Campbell saw the majority of his action at defensive back, starting 30 career games during his freshman, junior and senior seasons. He started the final 25 games of his career and added five starts as a true freshman. He completed his career with 113 tackles and five interceptions.
After collecting 29 tackles in five games as a freshman, Campbell switched to wide receiver for his sophomore campaign. He returned to the defensive secondary for the final two years of his career and saw plenty of action on special teams. He returned 13 punts for an average of 9.2 yards in 1985, and returned four kicks for an 18.5-yard average in 1986.
Campbell earned his bachelor of general studies degree from Michigan in 1988, and served as a student coach during the 1988-89 academic year.
He began his full-time coaching career as an assistant coach with the U.S. Naval Academy. Campbell spent two seasons coaching running backs for Navy (1989-90), before accepting a position at Ball State University as the running backs coach (1991-93). Campbell coached one season at Syracuse (1994) before returning to Ann Arbor as the Wolverines’ wide receivers coach.
Campbell is a native of Gary, IN, where he was a prep star at Roosevelt High School. He was an all-state selection in football and gained All-American honors in track after leading his team to back-to-back state championships. Campbell was inducted into both the Indiana High School Track and Football Hall of Fames.
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