Tony Grantham returns for his third stint in Annapolis after spending the 2017 season as the defensive coordinator at Western Illinois, where he helped lead the Leathernecks to an 8-4 season and a berth in the FCS playoffs. Western Illinois held the opposition to 24 points or less in eight of the 12 games and his defense was ranked 22nd in the country against the run, sixth in interceptions, 13th in takeaways, 23rd in sacks and 13th in tackles for a loss.
Prior to Western Illinois, Grantham spent three years as the linebackers coach and special teams coordinator at Louisville and helped the Cardinals win 26 games and make a bowl game all three seasons. Louisville finished in the top 20 in total defense in two of his three seasons and the Cardinals forced 81 turnovers over those three years.
Grantham was the outside linebackers coach at Navy from 2008-2013. He was influential in guiding Navy to a 9-4 record in 2013 and a win over Middle Tennessee State in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl. The 2013 Navy team was just the fifth in the program’s 132-year history of playing football to win at least nine games, beat Army and win a bowl game. The Navy defense held eight of its 13 opponents below their scoring average for the season.
In 2012, Grantham helped lead Navy to an 8-5 record and a berth in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl. Navy defeated Air Force, 28-21, in overtime, and Army, 17-13, to win the Commander-In-Chief’s Trophy.
The 2009 season was one of the program’s best, as Navy tied a then school record with 10 wins. The defense finished 18th in the country in scoring defense (19.4 points per game) and sixth in red zone defense.
Grantham returned to the Naval Academy in the spring of 2008 after spending one year at Campbell, where he served as the linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator.
He served four years at the Naval Academy, training the defensive line and outside linebackers from 2003-06. Navy posted a 35-15 record in Grantham’s four years in Annapolis, winning four-straight Commander-In-Chief’s trophies and appearing in four-straight bowl games.
While at Navy, Grantham has been part of a staff that went 18-2 in Service Academy games including a 10-0 mark against Army.
Grantham joined the Naval Academy staff after two seasons as a graduate assistant at LSU under current Alabama head coach Nick Saban. While in Baton Rouge, Grantham spent one year working on the offensive side of the ball and one year working on the defensive side. In 2001, the Tigers went 10-3 and won the SEC Championship Game over No. 2 Tennessee, knocking the Vols out of the BCS title game. LSU went on to win the Sugar Bowl. In 2002, LSU, which finished the season fifth nationally in total defense, shared the SEC Western Division title and played in the Cotton Bowl.
Grantham began his collegiate coaching career at Eastern Illinois, where he oversaw the Panthers outside linebackers and special teams. EIU, behind the play of quarterback Tony Romo, advanced to the NCAA I-AA Playoffs, and finished the season ranked 15th nationally.
Grantham, a 2000 graduate of Radford, received his degree in physical education. He and his wife Mollie have three children Jake, Ruthie and Luke.