College Football: Catawba to introduce Walker today

Defensive coordinator Curtis Walker and assitant Todd Bachman-Photo by Joey Benton
Defensive coordinator Curtis Walker and assitant Todd Bachman-Photo by Joey Benton

SALISBURY — First Livingstone, now Catawba.

Both of Salisbury’s Division II football teams will have new leaders when the 2012 season begins.


The Blue Bears announced on Monday that Daryl Williams will be the coach, replacing Elvin James, who resigned.

Today at 2 p.m., Catawba will introduce Curtis Walker as its next head football coach, taking over for Chip Hester.

Walker, a Burlington native, certainly knows the school. He is a former All-American player for Catawba. He spent last season as the defensive coordinator at Western Carolina.

Catawba athletic director Dennis Davidson is pleased with the selection.

“Not only is Curtis Walker a Catawba Hall of Famer, he is a great football coach,” Davidson said.“Our student athletes should be inspired by someone who has not only walked in their shoes, but also achieved All-American status as a player and a great reputation as a coach.”

Walker was a four-year starter and three-time All-American linebacker for Catawba in 1989-92. He was inducted into the Catawba Hall of Fame in 2004 and into the South Atlantic Conference Hall of Fame in 2008. Walker was Catawba’s team most valuable player in 1991.

Walker still holds the Catawba single game record for tackles with 25 stops against Wofford in 1991. He also still owns the all-time single season record for fumble recoveries with six, also set in 1991.

Walker joined David Bennett’s staff at Catawba in 1995. He was promoted to defensive coordinator in 2001 and the Indians were ranked first in Division II in scoring defense and 15th in total defense.

At Catawba, Walker was a part of three SAC championships (1996, 2000 and 2001) and three NCAA playoff appearances (1999, 2000 and 2001). The Indians were a combined 22-3 in 2000-01, a lot of the success due to a suffocating defense..

When Bennett left to begin the football program at Coastal Carolina in December 2001. Walker, who also coordinated the special teams, remained at Coastal until December 2011.

During Walker’s 10 seasons in Conway, the Chanticleers had 44 All-Big South accolades as Coastal Carolina captured three consecutive Big South Conference championships. (2004-2006).

Walker joined the Western Carolina staff in January of this year, on the staff of first-year head coach Mark Speir. Walker’s responsibilities included preparing practice schedules, opponent breakdowns, game week strategies and a defensive game plan for each opponent, in addition to recruiting North Carolina and Virginia.

A native of Burlington, NC, Walker was a two-time football all-conference performer at Graham High School, prior to graduating in 1988. He was the Mid-State Conference Defensive Player of the Year in 1987.

Walker and his wife, Sheka, a Rowan County native and Winston Salem State University alumna, have

two sons, Jalon and Curtis, Jr.


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