Decorated WRs coach takes over for new era at the position


Courtesy of App State Athletics

Lawrence Dawsey joins the Mountaineers coaching staff as the wide receivers coach following the departure of Pat Washington.

Cameron Burnett, Visual Managing Editor

Over the last five years, the App State football team has built a rich history of wide receivers with a trio of receivers leading the way for half a decade before completing their final seasons in 2021. Pat Washington served as the wide receivers coach since 2019, and his departure in January echoed a changing of the guard for the position group. 

Head coach Shawn Clark found his new WRs coach Jan. 27, 18 days after the stepping down of Washington. Lawrence Dawsey will take over the position and lead a young group of receivers this year. Dawsey is now the ninth Black coach at App State and third Black position coach for football.

I am excited to have the opportunity to be back on the field coaching wide receivers at Appalachian State University,” Dawsey said. “I am looking forward to being a member of a great coaching staff and working with a talented group of student-athletes. My goal is to aid in the development of these young men to help them reach their full potential both on and off the field.”

Dawsey is a decorated player and coach, starting with his playing career at Florida State under Hall of Fame coach Bobby Bowden. After his senior year in 1990, Dawsey was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the third round of the 1991 NFL Draft and spent seven years in the league before transitioning into a coaching career.

Starting as a graduate assistant for the 2003 BCS National Champion LSU Tigers, led by seven-time National Champion Nick Saban, Dawsey quickly made the jump to a full-time position in 2004 for South Florida. After spending three years at South Florida as their WRs coach, Dawsey returned to his alma mater as the receiver coach under Bowden. When Jimbo Fisher took over the reins for Florida State, Dawsey was promoted as the passing game coordinator and WRs coach.

During his tenure, Dawsey’s receivers showed growth on a national stage. This led to Florida State’s BCS National Championship victory in 2013. Seven of his receivers advanced to the NFL, including Kelvin Benjamin, who was the 11th rookie receiver to reach 1,000 yards in a season. Dawsey’s knowledge was integral in the Seminoles’ success from 2007-17, totaling three ACC championships and seven bowl wins.

“We are excited to welcome Lawrence to our program and the App Family,” Clark said. “His experience coaching receivers at a high level and serving as a mentor of young men will be a great asset to our program.”

When Fisher departed in 2017, the new staff replaced Dawsey, but he followed Fisher’s staff to Texas A&M as an offensive analyst in 2020. Following two seasons with the Aggies, Dawsey now brings his experience with college football dynasties to The Rock and is tasked with leading a new era at the position for App State.