Athletic Director and Head Football Coach
Campus Phone: Ext. 5290
Campus Mail: P.O. Box 5090
Office: Rankin Hall 103
Campus or Site Location: Greeneville
Frankie DeBusk is the athletic director at Tusculum College. He was named interim director of athletics in August, 2007 and was promoted to the full-time post later that year. DeBusk is also beginning his 14th season at the helm of the Pioneer football program.
DeBusk oversees the day-to-day operations of the Tusculum athletic department and the 14 sports that the College sponsors.
In his first four years at the helm of the Pioneer Athletic Department, DeBusk has guided Tusculum to outstanding seasons. In the last four years, TC has captured 10 South Atlantic Conference championships, six SAC Tournament titles and 16 NCAA Division II postseason appearances. Tusculum has finished fourth or better for the Doug Echols SAC Athletic Excellence Award three times, including second in his first two years as athletic director. With its outstanding national postseason success during the 2008-09 campaign, Tusculum was the top league school in the NACDA Director’s Cup, finishing 58th of 272 Division II programs in the country.
Tusculum student-athletes and coaches have garnered numerous individual accomplishments during DeBusk’s watch. In the last four years, 147 student-athletes have earned All-South Atlantic Conference honors, including 69 All-Region picks and 31 All-Americans. Twelve (14) have been selected as SAC Players of the Year, including five as Region Players of the Year. Four student-athletes have also garnered Conference Freshman of the Year accolades.
DeBusk has also stressed academic excellence in the department, resulting in 353 SAC Commissioner Honor Roll recipients over the last four years, including and a school record 29 named to the Captial One Academic All-District Team. Fifteen (15) Pioneers have earned the prestigious South Atlantic Conference Scholar Athlete Award for their respective sports, including eight Capital One Academic All-Americans®, including Dustin Morrow (baseball – 2008), Nicole Ferris (women’s soccer – 2008), Jarrell NeSmith (football – 2008, 2009), Simon Holzapfel (men’s cross country – 2009, 2010, 2011) and Chase Carroll (men’s golf – 2009).
Three TC head coaches were either named Conference or Region Coach of the Year during the 2007-08 season. Tommy Arnett (men’s tennis) and Brett Teach (men’s soccer) were named SAC Coaches of the Year, while Missy Tiber was selected as the Region Coach of the Year by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). In 2010-11, Michael Robinson was named the SAC Volleyball Coach of the Year.
DeBusk has overseen numerous athletic facility enhancements during his tenure as both football coach and athletic director at Tusculum. In 2007-08, championship banners were installed in Pioneer Arena, honoring the success of Tusculum athletics, both past and present. The Pioneer Arena playing surface was redesigned and refinished during the summer of 2008, while historic Rankin Hall, which houses the TC athletic department, experienced renovations to its main lobby area. The Pioneer football locker room also experienced a major renovation with the installation of new lockers and flooring.
DeBusk, the winningest football coach in Tusculum history, has built the Pioneers into year in and year out contenders in NCAA II, resulting in seven winning seasons in the last nine years.
Over the past 11 seasons, TC has posted a 71-49 mark including a 9-4 tally sheet in 2008, while claiming the program’s second South Atlantic Conference Championship and earning the school’s first berth to the NCAA II Football Playoffs. For his efforts, he was named Conference and AFCA Region Coach of the Year.
His 77 victories on the Pioneer sidelines makes DeBusk the winningest gridrion coach in Tusculum history. His victory tally is the third most in SAC history, while his 39 league wins are the sixth most in the conference record book.
In 2008, DeBusk’s team achieved success both on and off the field. The nine wins tied a school single-season record, including victories in four of its last five games.
DeBusk, a 1991 Furman University graduate, established 11 school records at quarterback for the Paladins, while compiling an impressive 31-6 record. In 1988, DeBusk led Furman to a 13-2 mark while capturing the NCAA Division I-AA National Championship. His collegiate career also included three Southern Conference titles and three trips to the NCAA I-AA playoffs.
He is not the first member of the DeBusk family to garner the TC black and orange. His brother, Doug, was a Tusculum Hall of Fame point guard for the Pioneer basketball team from 1991-95.
In 2003, DeBusk was the recipient of the prestigious Art Argauer Award, which is presented to the Tusculum coach of the year as selected by his peers. He was the co-recipient of the Argauer Award again in the 2008-09 year.
Frankie DeBusk is married to the former Jennifer Coffey of Bristol, Tenn. and they have one son, Ty.