DSU went 7-3 this year, which marked a full four game turnaround as compared to last season’s 3-7 campaign.
"Coach Cooley and his staff took over a program that finished 3-7 the year before and quickly began the process of building a family here at Delta State," DSU director of athletics Ronnie Mayers said. "Cooley's family-first coaching style certainly resonated with our student-athletes and they bought into his plan to return the Statesmen to championship football. We've still got work to do, but we are proud of where we are headed."
The Nashville, Ark., native took over a program where player morale was quite possibly at an all-time low. In a matter a weeks, Cooley and his staff instilled a family atmosphere within the program and the brotherhood created by it fueled the turnaround on the field and within the classroom.
"I'm excited about how far we have come this season, but we still have a lot of work to do," Cooley said. "I'm committed to Delta State and our mission of returning championship football to Cleveland. Our staff made some tremendous strides this year and I'm excited to see what we can do with a full year with our family. I also want to thank coach Mayers and our administration for having confidence and faith in the direction we're taking the program."
This season, the Statesmen passing attack blistered opponents' defenses for a league-leading 358.7 yards per game, while finishing second with 472.7 yards per game in total offense. In 10 games, Statesman quarterbacks completed 304-of-456 passes for 3,587 yards with 26 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. DSU's 3,587 yards passing is the fourth highest single-season total in program history.
DSU's receivers also shined in the system. In all, 15 different receivers caught passes in 2013, including 11 with 10-plus catches on the season.
Cooley and his staff have already hit the ground recruiting next year's class.