clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Wisconsin Whitewater Coach Brian Borland Hired by Buffalo

New Buffalo Coach Lance Leipold has brought his current defensive coordinator from the University of Wisconsin Whitewater to Buffalo. Brian Borland is going to replace Lou Tepper as the defensive coordinator for the UB Bulls starting as soon as the Warhawks complete their postseason.

The Defense:

His defense is described as playing with "an aggressive front with a bend-but-don’t-break mentality in the secondary" by's Tom Oats.

The defense itself is a 4-3 base. When they blitz the pressure typically seems to come from the outside linebackers, though run blitzes are frequently brought from the middle linebacker.

In the secondary; The corners play off a bit which is something UB fans are used to seeing. I'm not sure given our history that corners playing 5-7 yards off the line is a model for success in Division 1 ball.

Borland's philosophy is to have his players steeped in one defense so that by the time they are upper class men they will know implicitly what their responsibility on a given play is.

"To me, it’s the consistency of the scheme, When a guy comes in as a freshman, we’re by and large doing the same thing when he’s a senior. One thing I think we do probably as good as anybody is coach technique. I think that’s a lost art, at least in some areas. We’re not winning by inventing a new defense every week and by blitzing everywhere. We’re winning by coaching our guys, our scheme, our technique." - Coach Borland

The Resume:

Borland played his college ball at Morningside College in Iowa (1981-84) where he was a four-year letter winner. While Morningside is currently an NAIA school in Borlands days they were a Division-II member of the North Central Conference. Borland's role was as a three-year starter at defensive back, and a team captain.

Years Institution Role
1981-84 Morningside (DII) DB (Player)
1985 Wisconsin (DI) GA
1986 Az Western (NJCAA) DB
1987-88 Florida (DI) GA
1989-90 Min-Morris (DII) DC
1991-93 Baker (NAIA) DC
1994-2014 Wi - WW (DIII) DB/DC
2014 Buffalo (DI) DC

After he graduated from Morningside he took up a Graduate Assistant position for the University of Wisconsin. His stint with the Badgers was short-lived however as Arizona Western hired him to be their Defensive Backs coach.

After a season with the Matadors Borland returned to academia as a GA in Gainesville, where he completed his Masters degree.

His first coordinator job came with Minnesota Morris, spending two years with the program. The underfunded program was struggling but still managed a winning season and an overall record of 10-11 during Borland's two years.

Shortly after Borland left the Cougars dropped from scholarship DII to Division III.

His next stop was in the NAIA with Baker University in Kansas. During his three seasons Borland's defenses helped Baker win a conference championship. In 1992 the Wildcats made the NAIA elite eight, the following season the final four.

He coached Leroy Brown to a school sacks record (21.5) which still stands and Robert Villafranca set a single season interception record with 11 during the 1991 season.

Borland was hired by Wisconsin Whitewater in 1994 as a Defensive Backs coach. In 2002 he was promoted to the role of Defensive Coordinator and earned Wisconsin Collegiate Assistant Coach of the Year honors in both 2004 and 2006.

He is the only member of the University of Wisconsin Whitewater staff who has had the same role for the string of eight national championship games in nine years. The one common thread during the decade of Warhawk dominance is their defensive coordinator. While Leipold is 106-6 his defensive coordinator has coached teams to a record of 153-19.

The Warhawks have led the WIAC in fewest points allowed 11 years straight years. During that period they have given up the fewest yards in the WIAC eight times. In 2007, Whitewater climbed to 11th in the nation in scoring defense. Since then, it has been seventh, fourth, fifth, fifth, second and, this season, first.

This coming season he is scheduled to be inducted to the Wisconsin Football Coaches Hall of Fame.

In the 2009 season, Borland led the Warhawks to the fourth-best scoring defense in Division III. In 2010, the Warhawks were ranked second in NCAA Division III in run defense. In 2011, Borland’s rushing defense was ranked first in the WIAC.

Borland was named Division III Coordinator of the Year in 2013 by after helping lead the Warhawks to the NCAA Division III national championship, the team's fifth in seven seasons.

Side Notes:

As is often the case with coaches at lower levels Boreland has experience coaching other sports.  He has also served as head women's softball coach at Baker University and head track and field coach at the University of Minnesota-Morris.

At White Water Borland also coached track and field from 1994-2002. In 2000, he led the Whitewater women's track and field team to a fourth place finish at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships. He earned NCAA D-III national coach of the year.

Like his predecessor, Lou Tepper, UB's new defensive coordinator has tried his hand at the media. It's not as famous as Tepper's "Complete Linebacking" but the DVD "Coaching Defensive Backs for Youth Football", published in 2007, has received some nice reviews.