Photos from Army football practice on Friday, Aug. 5, 2011.
Head coach Rich Ellerson named Ian Shields Army's offensive coordinator in January 2009. In addition to his coordinator duties, Shields was named associate head coach in 2013.
After four seasons of also working directly with Army's quarterbacks, Shields will focus more on his coordinator duties, while also keeping a watchful eye on the Black Knights' signal callers.
In his first four seasons, Shields has mentored a unit that has become one of the most prolific rushing attacks not only in the nation, but in West Point history. Army's triple-option offense has topped the NCAA rushing list in each of the past two seasons. It is the first time the Black Knights have led the country in that category in consecutive seasons since 1944-45. The 2012 team set Academy records for both total rushing yards (4,438) and rushing yards per game (369.8). The 2011 squad was the first in Academy history to crack the 4,000-yard mark (4,158). Under Shields's guidance, the 2012 team set an Army record with 5,235 yards of total offense, the first 5,000-yard season in school history. The Black Knights' 436.2 yards-per-game average ranked fourth on the Army all-time ledger. The 2011 squad recorded 254 first downs, a short-lived Army record as the 2012 Black Knights moved the chains 283 times.
Since Shields's arrival, Army has not ranked lower than 16th in the nation in rushing, producing three top 10 finishes. His offenses have accounted for three of the program's 12 most productive seasons on the ground in terms of yardage and touchdowns, and three of the Black Knights' top 16 rushing games have come in the last four seasons. Three of the four units that Shields has coached since his arrival have finished among the Black Knights' all-time top 10 in total offensive yardage.
Shields mentored former quarterback Trent Steelman to one of the most productive careers in Black Knights' history. Steelman set Army records for rushing attempts (772), rushing yards (3,320) and 100-yard rushing games (12) by a quarterback. He broke the Army mark for career rushing touchdowns regardless of postion (45), a record previously held by Glenn Davis. Steelman became the first Black Knight to rush for 2,000 yards and pass for 2,000 yards (2,723). Steelman finished his career ranked among Army's all-time top 10 in passing yards, pass completions, pass efficiency, total offnese, all-purpose yards, points scored, touchdowns scored and touchdowns responsible for.
Shields coached Steelman to the most productive campaign by a rookie quarterback in West Point history. Steelman was the first Army freshman to start 12 games in a season and the first plebe signal caller to register two 100-yard rushing games.
Shields came to West Point with Ellerson after completing his second stint as the Cal Poly offensive coordinator in 2008. Under Shields' direction that season, the Mustangs established school records for first downs (262), first downs rushing (162), points scored (488) and touchdowns (67). Shields' offense scored at least 49 points in six of 11 contests, topping the 50-point barrier three times, including a season-high 69 points in a home defeat of Southern Utah. Cal Poly scored in 41 of its 44 quarters of action in 2008. The Mustangs finished the season ranked first nationally in both total offense (487.45) and scoring offense (44.36), second in pass efficiency (167.72) and third in rushing offense (306.45).
Shields' 2008 offense was led by quarterback Jonathan Daily who led the nation in passing efficiencey (171.6) in 2008. He was a first-team All-Great West Conference pick after throwing for 23 touchdowns while throwing only five interceptions. He also rushed for 11 scores. Shields also helped mold wide receiver Ramses Barden. Barden caught 67 passes for 1,257 yards and 18 touchdowns on his way to becoming the school's career leader in all three categories (206 receptions, 4,203 yards and 50 touchdown catches). Barden recorded at least one touchdown reception in his final 20 contests, surpassing Jerry Rice's NCAA FCS mark and Larry Fitzgerald's all-time NCAA record. He was selected by the New York Giants in the third round of the 2009 National Football League Draft.
Shields, who also served as Cal Poly's co-offensive coordinator in 2004 and 2005, departed San Luis Obispo in 2006 when he began a two-year stint as head coach at Eastern Oregon University (2006-07), the first two years the program competed in the scholarship Frontier League of NAIA. Shields led the Mountaineers to a 6-5 finish in 2006, winning their last three games. Prior to that year, the Frontier coaches had picked EOU to finish in last place.
As co-offensive coordinator at Cal Poly during his previous two seasons, Shields was instrumental in developing a dynamic spread-option offensive attack and guiding Cal Poly to its first NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision playoff berth and victory in 2005. That year, the Mustang offense averaged 27.2 points and 352.8 yards per game as Cal Poly posted a 9-4 record and reached the quarterfinal round of the national playoffs.
Cal Poly's offense generated 30.2 points and 387.2 yards a contest in 2004, racing to a 9-2 record and the first of two Great West Football Conference championships.
A 1994 graduate of Oregon State University and former quarterback for the Beavers, Shields served a one-year term as offensive coordinator at Bucknell University in 2003. The Bison recorded the biggest single-season turnaround in Patriot League history that season, leading the league in rushing, passing efficiency, turnover margin, fewest penalties against and fewest sacks against.
A native Oregonian, Shields began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Oregon State. He worked with the Beavers' linebackers, tight ends, quarterbacks and running backs, while assisting with OSU's special teams during that three-season (1994-96) stay. He moved on to Eastern Oregon for the first time in 1997, assuming offensive coordinator duties for three years (1997-99). During that time he helped to develop the Mountaineers' all-time leading passer, rusher and receiver. Eastern Oregon's offense established 35 school records during that period.
Shields moved on to Saint Mary's in 2000, heading the Gaels' vaunted spread-option attack for three seasons (2000-02). St. Mary's finished in the top five nationally in rushing offense each of those seasons. In his first season at St, Mary's, Shields helped the Gaels shatter single season school records in rushing yards (3404), touchdowns (50) and first downs (233). St. Mary's also established single game school standards in scoring (71 points) and rushing yards (535).
Shields, who lettered three times in football and twice in baseball at Oregon State, was elected team captain of the gridiron squad during his final campaign. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in speech communication and earned a master's degree in interdisciplinary studies from OSU in 1997.
He and his wife, Norma, a former collegiate volleyball standout at Eastern Oregon, have three sons: Beau, Jonah and Jordan.