Lance Thompson is finishing up his second year in Columbia. Head football coach Will Muschamp named Thompson as the Gamecocks’ assistant head coach of defense and defensive line coach on December 31, 2015.
In his second year, Thompson helped groom Dante Sawyer into a second-team All-SEC selection, while senior Taylor Stallworth had his finest season for the Garnet & Black. Additionally, junior college transfer Javon Kinlaw developed into a force to be reckoned with over the next two seasons.
Thompson is a proven winner. A member of national championship staffs at Alabama, Georgia Tech and LSU, Thompson has been a member of four SEC championship coaching staffs, two ACC championship staffs and one Conference USA divisional winner.
Additionally, he has either coached or recruited players who have participated in eight National Championship games, winning seven of those contests (Georgia Tech, LSU twice and Alabama four times).
"I'm excited to have Coach Thompson join our staff," said Coach Muschamp at the time of Thompson's hiring. "He did a great job calling the Auburn defense in their bowl win over Memphis. He has coached multiple positions throughout his career and has a great understanding of our defensive system. He will be an outstanding addition to our staff."
Ranked as the No. 1 recruiter in the nation on the Ultimate ESPN 300 recruiting power rankings for 2014 when he was coaching at Alabama, and named Rivals National Recruiter of the Year in 2008, also with the Crimson Tide, Thompson was reunited with Muschamp on Gus Malzahn's Auburn staff in 2015, where he coached the linebackers. Thompson and Muschamp also worked together as assistant coaches at LSU from 2002-2003.
Thompson worked at Alabama three different times, from 1999-2000, 2007-08 and 2012-14. He helped Alabama's 2013 defense to hold opponents to 13.9 points per game, the fifth-best mark in Division I college football. His Alabama recruits included Julio Jones, A.J. McCarron, Mark Barron, D.J. Fluker and Trent Richardson.
Thompson worked with Nick Saban at both Alabama and LSU. He was the assistant head coach in charge of recruiting and the tight ends coach when LSU won the 2003 national title. He also coached the defensive line at LSU.
Thompson also logged stints at Tennessee (2009-11), Georgia Tech (1988-98, 2001), and Central Florida, where he was defensive coordinator from 2004-06. In 2005, UCF won the Conference USA Eastern Division title. At Georgia Tech, he held various roles, including defensive line coach, defensive ends coach, tight ends coach, recruiting coordinator and director of football operations. He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant with the Yellow Jackets in 1988.
Thompson has coached and/or recruited several players who have been selected highly in the NFL Draft, including such notables as Jones, Barron, Richardson, Fluker, Chance Warmack, Marco Coleman, Cornelius Griffin, Marquise Hill, Laron Landry, Tyson Jackson, Coutney Upshaw and Coleman Rudolph.
Thompson is a 1987 graduate of The Citadel, where he was a four-year letterwinner as a defensive lineman, and earned his bachelor's degree in education and mathematics.
A native of Riverdale, Ga., he is married to the former Mary Ann Guzy. Thompson has five children -- Allie, Christina and Lane Thompson, and Alli and Taylor Guzy.
- Women's Sports
- Fan Zone
- Gamecock Club
- Academic Services
- Active Gamecocks
- Annual Reports
- Brag Points
- Communications and Public Relations
- Community Outreach
- Compliance Services
- Facility Rentals
- Facility Projects
- Football Strength & Conditioning
- Gamecock Gala
- Gamecock Student-Athlete Promise
- General Releases
- All Access