James Cregg Season 2023
James Cregg, who has six years of NFL experience and another 17 seasons at the collegiate level, is in his third year as LSU’s offensive line coach. Cregg was named to the position in December of 2017.
Prior to joining LSU, Cregg spent four seasons as the assistant offensive line coach for the Los Angeles Chargers. He held the same position at previous NFL stops with the Denver Broncos (2014-16) and the Oakland Raiders (2007-08). He won a Super Bowl with the Broncos in 2015.
LSU marks Cregg’s third coaching stop at a Power 5 school as he spent four seasons at Southern Cal (2010-13) and one at Tennessee (2009).
Cregg did perhaps his best coaching job in 2019, molding the Tiger offensive line into a unit that claimed the Joe Moore Award., which is presented to the best offensive line in college football. It’s the first time in the history of the award that a unit from LSU won the honor.
LSU had eight players start at least one game on the offensive line and the Tigers didn’t use the same starting lineup on the offensive line in consecutive games until games 8 and 9 in wins over Auburn and Alabama. Center Lloyd Cushenberry and right guard Damien Lewis started every game for the Tigers and both earned All-America honors.
LSU’s offensive line in 2019 helped pave the way for the first offense in NCAA history to feature a 5,000-yard passer, two 1,000-yard receivers and a 1,000-yard rusher. LSU’s offense led the country in both scoring and total offense and set numerous SEC and school records on its way to a 15-0 record and a national title.
In his first year with the Tigers in 2018, Cregg inherited an offensive line that returned only two starters (Garrett Brumfield and Saahdiq Charles) and he transformed that unit into a dominant group by the end of the season. Cregg’s unit helped pave the way for 1,000-yard rusher Nick Brossette.
LSU had eight different players start at least one game on the offensive line in 2018 and the Tigers used a total of seven combinations on the offensive line in 13 games. LSU opened the season starting a different combination on the offensive line for the first seven games of the year. Cushenberry and Lewis – both first-time starters – were the only Tigers to start every game up front for LSU in 2018.
Cregg joined the Tigers after one season in the NFL with the Chargers where he assisted with an offensive line that allowed the fewest sacks in the NFL (18) and helped running back Melvin Gordon rush for a career-best 1,105 yards in 2017.
He coached a line that featured three players making their first NFL start, and tutored Russell Okung to an appearance in the 2018 Pro Bowl. The Chargers finished as the top passing offense in the NFL and they ranked fourth overall in total yards in 2017.
Cregg spent three seasons (2014-16) as the assistant offensive line coach for the Denver Broncos. He tutored Matt Paradis, who played every snap for the Broncos in both 2015 and 2016. Paradis was an alternate for the 2017 Pro Bowl.
The 2015 season saw Cregg coach seven different starters along the offensive line, including four players making their first career start. The season culminated in a 24-10 victory over the Panthers in Super Bowl 50, marking the franchise’s third World Championship.
In 2014, he assisted an offensive line that provided the foundation for a unit that finished fourth in total offense and second in scoring offense. Cregg tutored a line that allowed the fewest sacks in the NFL (17).
Cregg spent one season in Knoxville with the Vols (2009) before moving to California to become the offensive line coach at USC for the next four seasons (2010-13). Cregg coached first-team All-Pac-12 selections in each of his four years with the school, including offensive tackles and future NFL first-round picks Tyron Smith (No. 9, Dallas, 2011) and Matt Kalil (No. 4, Minnesota, 2012).
In 2011, USC finished second in the nation in sacks allowed (eight) despite not starting a senior along the offensive line. Kalil was named first-team All-America, while guard Marcus Martin was chosen as a first-team Freshman All-America.
Cregg spent two seasons (2007-08) as the assistant offensive line coach with the Oakland Raiders, marking his first NFL job. In 2007, he oversaw a line that blocked for the No. 6 rushing attack in the NFL, finishing with 130.4 yards-per-game, including 1,000-yard rusher Justin Fargas.
A native of Syracuse, N.Y., Cregg prepped at Norco (Calif.) High School before spending four years (1992-95) as an offensive lineman at Colorado State University. He was a first-team All-Western Athletic Conference selection as a senior in 1995.
In 1994, Cregg helped Colorado State to the first 10-win season in school history as the Rams posted a 10-2 mark and played in the Holiday Bowl. As a senior, Cregg and the Rams went 8-4 overall and advanced to the Holiday Bowl for a second straight year.
Cregg remained at Colorado State and landed his first coaching job as a defensive graduate assistant from 1997-99. After three seasons at his alma mater, Cregg moved on to Colgate (2000-03) and Idaho (2004-06), coaching the defensive line at both stops.
At Colgate, Cregg was part of a staff that led the Raiders to the 2003 NCAA Division I-AA championship game. Colgate won 21 straight games during his time on the coaching staff. In four years at Colgate, claimed two Patriot League titles and finished in the Top 10 in the nation in rushing defense twice.
In 2007, Cregg landed his first NFL job as an assistant offensive line coach with the Oakland Raiders (2007-08). In 2009, he was hired to coach the offensive line at the University of Tennessee. That season, the Volunteers allowed just 12 sacks, tied for fewest on the Southeastern Conference.
Cregg received his bachelor’s degree in social science from Colorado State in 1997. He was born Aug. 18, 1973 and he and his wife, Dayna, have a daughter, McKenzie.
The Cregg File
Year at LSU: Second (appointed December 19, 2017)
Birthdate: August 18, 1973
Hometown: Syracuse, N.Y.
Alma Mater: Colorado State (B.S. in social science, 1997)
1992-95 Colorado State (offensive line)
1997-99 Colorado State (graduate assistant)
2000-03 Colgate (defensive line)
2004-06 Idaho (defensive line)
2007-08 Oakland Raiders (offensive line)
2009 Tennessee (offensive line)
2010-13 Southern Cal (offensive line)
20014-16 Denver Broncos (offensive line)
2017 Los Angeles Chargers (offensive line)
2018-20 LSU (offensive line)
As a player
Season Bowl Team Opponent Results
1994 Holiday Colorado State Michigan L, 24-14
1995 Holiday Colorado State Kansas State L, 54-21
As a coach
Season Bowl Team Opponent Results
1997 Holiday Colorado State Missouri W, 35-24
1999 Liberty Colorado State
2009 Chick-fil-A Tennessee Virginia Tech L, 37-14
2012 Sun Bowl Southern Cal Georgia Tech L, 21-7
2013 Las Vegas Southern Cal Fresno State W, 45-20
2018 Fiesta LSU UCF W, 40-32
2019 Chick-fil-A Peach LSU Oklahoma 63-28
2019 CFP National Championship LSU Clemson 42-25