Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns head football coach Mark Hudspeth is a winner. It’s that simple. From his earliest days as a coach leading Winston Academy to the
Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns head football coach Mark Hudspeth is a winner. It’s that simple.
From his earliest days as a coach leading Winston Academy to the 1997 Mississippi state title to leading the Ragin’ Cajuns to unprecedented success both on the field and in the classroom, Hudspeth has been a champion.
Like football, winning is all he knows.
Hired as Louisiana’s 26th head coach in program history on Dec. 13, 2010, Hudspeth quickly grabbed the attention of Ragin’ Cajuns fans with his dynamic personality, energy and desire. He tirelessly toured the Acadiana area, speaking to any group that wanted to listen to him speak about Ragin’ Cajuns football.
And for a passionate fan base that has dreamed of a consistent winner on the gridiron, Hudspeth has delivered from his first day on the job.
The development of the Ragin’ Cajuns in four seasons under Hudspeth has been dramatic. With 36 wins during Hudspeth’s tenure in Cajun Country, Louisiana has posted the best four-year record in program history while also becoming the first school in NCAA history to win the same bowl game (R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl) four consecutive times. With bowl victories in each of the past four seasons, the Ragin’ Cajuns are one of five schools in the country to accomplish that feat joining Michigan State, Oregon, South Carolina and Texas A&M. And during that same four-year span, the Ragin’ Cajuns join Oregon as the only schools in the nation to win nine-plus game, including a bowl victory.
A native of Louisville, Miss., Hudspeth grew up in a town with a population of just 7,000, and quickly became one of the towns’ most notable young men, along with current NCAA head coaches Andy Kennedy (Ole Miss men’s basketball) and Matthew Mitchell (Kentucky women’s basketball).
Success came to Hudspeth at Winston Academy as he helped the Patriots to the state title game as a senior in football 1987. He went on to earn all-county honors three times and play in the Mississippi High School All-Star game as a senior. After graduating from Delta State with a degree in health and education in 1992, Hudspeth began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Central Arkansas, receiving his master’s degree in secondary school administration in 1993. While at UCA, he was part of the coaching staff that guided the squad to the 1992 Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference crown.
Hudspeth earned his first full-time coaching position when he went to Nicholls State, coaching the wide receivers and tight ends in 1994 before switching to running backs in 1995. His high school alma mater beckoned in 1996 as Hudspeth returned to Winston Academy as head coach, guiding the team to a 25-1 record and the 1997 state title during his two seasons. Hudspeth returned to collegiate ranks in 1999, serving as offensive coordinator at Delta State for two seasons and helping lead the Statesmen to the 2000 NCAA Division II national title. He moved to Annapolis to serve as offensive coordinator at Navy in 2001 before earning his first collegiate head coaching job at North Alabama the following year.
Hudspeth is married to the former Tyla McConnell and has three sons, Gunner, Major and Captain, and one daughter, Carley.
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