Kenny Carter, who has spent 15 previous seasons as an assistant coach with BCS programs, serves as Youngstown State's passing-game coordinator, co-special teams coordinator as well as wide receivers coach.
During 2014, the Penguins wide receivers thrived under Carter. Junior Andrew Williams, who was an honorable-mention All-MVFC selection, had a career year with highs in receptions (54), yards (976) and touchdowns (six). His 976 receiving yards were the most by a Penguin since 1999.
Of Williams's 54 catches, 47 came in conference play and covered 776 yards. In eight league games he averaged 97 yards per game and 16.5 yards per reception. He became a go-to target with six-or-more receptions in each of the final six games of the year. Entering the season, Williams had 819 career receiving yards.
Senior WR Jelani Berassa had a strong final campaign with 32 catches for 564 yards and six scores. Berassa became the first Penguin since 1978 to haul in three touchdown passes in a single game when he had three against Butler. Junior Andre Stubbs caught 28 passes for 365 yards while senior Christian Bryan had eight for 111 yards.
Berassa and Williams had the knack for the big play, combining for eight catches of 54-or-more yards. Williams had an impressive six receptions of over 54 yards, with a long 69 against FCS finalist Illinois State. Berassa had a pair of catches that were for 66 and 72 yards as well.
In 2014, YSU averaged 213.0 yards passing and 202.2 yards rushing per contest in 12 games for an average of 415.2 yards a contest. It was just the second time in school history that YSU averaged more than 200 yards rushing and passing per game in the same season. The Guins threw for 2,556 yards while rushing for 2,427. The Penguins had 21 touchdown rushes and 20 touchdown passes during the campaign.
PK/P Joey Cejudo became the first Penguin since Jeff Wilkins in the early 1990's to handle both duties in the same season. Cejudo made 14-of-17 field-goal attempts while averaging 40 yards a punt. He had 10 punts of longer than 50 yards during the season and placed 16 inside the opposition's 20-yard line.
Carter coached at LSU, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Vanderbilt, Florida and Louisville in his 15 seasons at the BCS level. He spent most of his focus with the running backs and wide receivers at those five schools.
Carter spent the previous four campaigns as the special teams coordinator and running backs coach at Louisville on Charlie Strong’s staff. The Cardinals had an outstanding run those four years, highlighted by a 23-3 record and bowl wins over Florida and Miami (Fla.) the last two seasons.
In 2013, Louisville was 12-1 and concluded the campaign with an impressive 36-9 win over Miami (Fla.) in the Russell Athletic Bowl. On special teams, the Cardinals had two punt blocks and a kickoff return for a score. Placekicker John Wallace made 20-of-24 field-goal attempts and 52 PATs while punter Ryan Johnson averaged 41.2 yards a punt. The Cardinals led the nation in punt-return defense yielding 15 total yards for the year.
In 2012, UofL had a break-through campaign posting 11 wins, sharing the final Big East title and soundly defeating Florida in the Sugar Bowl. The Cardinals defeated the fourth-ranked Gators 33-23 in the Sugar Bowl capping off just the fourth 11-plus win season in program history.
The Cardinals had seven-win campaigns in 2010 and 2011 advancing to Bowl Games each year. UofL had two special teams touchdowns in 2011 and led the nation in punt-return defense allowing seven total yards for the season. That year, Louisville shared the Big East Conference title.
Carter went to Louisville with Strong following the 2009 season after a successful two-year stint on Urban Meyer’s staff. The Gators were 26-1 in his two seasons as running backs coach. In 2009, Florida was 13-1 losing only in the SEC Championship Game. The Gators capped the year with an impressive win over Cincinnati in the Sugar Bowl.
The 2008 campaign was a banner year for the Gators program posting a 13-1 record, including a 24-14 victory over Oklahoma in the BCs National Championship Game. After an early-season loss to Ole Miss, the Gators won their final 10 games of the year, including a 31-20 win over Alabama in the SEC title game.
He was the running backs coach and recruiting coordinator at Vanderbilt from 2004-07 for Bobby Johnson. Before joining the Commodores he coached the wide receivers at Penn State from 2001-03 and the running backs at Pittsburgh in 2000. Carter’s first experience in the SEC was with LSU in 1999 working with the outside linebackers for Gerry DiNardo.
Carter has experience on the FCS level coaching five seasons in the Southern Conference. He was tight ends coach at Furman in 1993 and was an assistant in numerous capacities at The Citadel from 1994-98.
A native of Camden, S.C., he played linebacker for The Citadel from 1986-89, earning four letters. He earned his degree in Health and Exercise Science from The Citadel in 1990.
Kenny and his wife, Bonnie, have two children, Brey and Kennedy.