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Purdue Football: Boilermakers Hire Navy DB Coach James Adams.

Purdue’s new defensive backs coach has deep ties to new defensive coordinator Brad Lambert.

NCAA Football - Maryland vs Wake Forest - September 24, 2005 Photo by Brian A. Westerholt/Getty Images

Several trusted sources are reporting that Purdue will hire Navy defensive backs coach James Adams to fill the final vacancy on the coaching staff.

This will be Adams’s third job in as many years after spending a year at Navy and a year at Western Michigan. He was the defensive backs coach at both schools. Prior to Western Michigan and Navy, Adams was on the initial University of Charlotte coaching staff in 2011 and was retained by former Charlotte head coach and current Purdue defensive coordinator Brad Lambert in 2013. Adams was with Lambert for his entire tenure with the 49ers, including their transition from an FCS independent to a member of Conference USA. He began his coaching career at Wofford after two years as a graduate assistant at Wake Forest.

Prior to his coaching career, Adams played linebacker for Wake Forest, his position coach was none other than...Brad Lambert. After a knee injury ended his playing career early, he stayed on with Wake Forest as a graduate assistant while Coach Lambert was the defensive coordinator.

What He Brings to Purdue

First and foremost, he’s a guy coach Lambert knows and trusts. The defensive coaching staff, to date, has been a randomly assembled group of coaches, without much experience working together, or with Coach Brohm (that doesn’t have to be a bad thing, that’s just a fact). Adams knows exactly had Coach Lambert wants to do coming into the job, and that should allow him to hit the ground running. That’s huge after Adams missed what was essentially new coach orientation on the defensive side of the ball this spring.

Throughout his career, interceptions have been his calling card. Charlotte led C-USA in interceptions in 2016 with 16, and was 14th nationally. Purdue has been in desperate need of defensive turnovers over the last few seasons. Hopefully Coach Adams coaching defensive backs, paired with Coach English coaching safeties helps bump up the interception numbers over the next few seasons.


I like this hire. It fills a huge hole in the coaching staff with a guy that won’t need any time to acclimate his coaching to Coach Lambert’s needs on defense. It also adds a young, energetic coach to the defensive staff that mainly features crusty old vets, which should help recruiting.

This is the best outcome possible in an otherwise difficult situation (in terms of timing after Poindexter left right before spring ball).

Good work to all involved.