Former Gilmer High Coach Now Leads The Best College Team In Texas
As Gilmer High begins to head into the playoffs once again with a 9-1 record, it doesn't take long to figure out where you can trace the beginnings of the school's excellence in football. Because the man who lead the school through a 15 year run of state championships and big wins is now leading the best college team in Texas this year, much to the chagrin of the "big boys" like UT, A&M and Baylor.
Coach Jeff Traylor, a native of Gilmer, built his hometown program into a prep powerhouse during his many years there posting a 175-26 record and leading the Buckeyes to five state championship game appearances, three state titles and 12 district crowns.
Gilmer turned in a pair of perfect 16-0 seasons, won 10-or-more games 11 times, and registered seven 13-win seasons and three 15-win campaigns during his tenure. In 2015, Gilmer renamed Buckeye Stadium to Jeff Traylor Stadium to honor Traylor’s success.
With that kind of success, it was time to climb the ladder for Traylor. He joined the University of Texas at Austin as the special teams coordinator and tight ends coach before becoming the Longhorns associate head coach for offense and wide receivers coach in 2016.
After short stints with SMU and Arkansas, Traylor was given the reigns of UT-San Antonio in 2019 becoming only the 3rd head coach in school history.
In just his SECOND season has head coach, the Roadrunners have a 15-5 record through his first 20 games, a program record for a head coach. UTSA also has its the best overall (9-0) and conference (5-0) starts in school history, while the current nine-game winning streak is the third-longest active FBS streak. He is one of 21 FBS coaches on the Paul "Bear" Bryant Awards Coach of the Year watch list this season.
With potential college coaching chaos brewing at other in-state schools like TCU and outside the state like LSU, UTSA made a MAJOR investment in making sure Coach Traylor wasn't seduced by them. As a result, Coach Traylor and UTSA agreed to a contract extension through 2031 valued at $28 million. Traylor's annual salary will average $2.8 million, in addition to potential bonuses, and the university will increase the salary pool for assistant coaches and support staff.
Its pretty safe to say that his players LOVE the idea of having him around for awhile.
By the way, if you're upset that I called them the "Best College Team In Texas" right now, don't just take my word for it. Dave Campbell's Texas Football, the END ALL BE ALL guide for all things Texas football has UTSA ranked #1 in its "power rankings" as they are also the ONLY undefeated FBS program in the state currently.
On behalf of ALL of us here in East Texas, we're rooting for your continued success coach! Good luck!