|Born:||April 24, 1971|
|Height:||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|Weight:||205 lb (93 kg)|
|High school:||Louisville (KY) Trinity|
|* Offseason and/or practice squad member only|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Head coaching record|
|Player stats at PFR|
Jeffrey Scott Brohm (born April 24, 1971) is an American football coach and former quarterback. He is the head football coach at Purdue University. Brohm played college football at the University of Louisville for coach Howard Schnellenberger from 1989 to 1993 and played in the National Football League (NFL) for seven seasons from 1994 to 2000 and the XFL in 2001. He served as the head coach at Western Kentucky University from 2014–2016.
Brohm was born in Louisville, Kentucky. His father, Oscar, was a quarterback for Louisville and a high school football coach in Louisville. He attended Trinity High School in Louisville, Kentucky. After graduation from high school, he was selected by the Montreal Expos in the seventh round of the 1989 MLB Draft, but he instead decided to pursue playing football and baseball at the University of Louisville. After spending his freshman season as a backup quarterback, he was once again selected in the MLB Draft, this time in the fourth round by the Cleveland Indians. This time Brohm had a change of heart and decided to pursue a professional baseball career in the summers when he wasn't playing football. After two summers, he decided to drop baseball and focus solely on football. As starting quarterback for two seasons, he led the Cardinals to the 1993 Liberty Bowl.
Brohm went undrafted in the 1994 NFL Draft. He played seven years as a quarterback in the NFL, with the San Diego Chargers in 1994, the Washington Redskins in 1995, the San Francisco 49ers from 1995 to 1997, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1998, the Denver Broncos in 1999 and the Cleveland Browns in 2000. He also played one season with the Orlando Rage of the XFL, where he was named to the All-XFL team despite having his season end early with a shoulder injury.
In 2002, Brohm moved to the AF2 where he became the head coach of the Louisville Fire. Brohm returned to the University of Louisville in 2003. He spent the next six years as a quarterback coach, passing game coordinator, offensive coordinator, and assistant head coach for the Cardinals and helped them win the 2007 Orange Bowl. In 2009, Brohm went to Florida Atlantic University, where he was reunited with Schnellenberger as offensive coordinator. Brohm then went on to coach at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign from 2010 to 2011, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2012, and at Western Kentucky University in 2013 as an associate head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. When Petrino returned to Louisville in 2014, Brohm was promoted to head coach of Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. As head coach, he led the team to three bowl games, winning two of them. In 2016, Jeff Brohm took the head coaching position at Purdue University, where he took the Boilermakers to a 7-6 record in his first season.
- 1 Early life
- 2 College playing career
- 3 Professional career
- 4 Coaching career
- 5 Head coaching record
- 6 Personal
- 7 Coaching tree
- 8 References
Brohm was born in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1971. He is the son of Donna and Oscar Brohm. Jeff and his siblings Greg, Kimberly and Brian were born in Louisville, while his father was an assistant football coach at Trinity High School in Louisville.
Brohm was a standout high school player at Trinity High School in Louisville. He was named the "Kentucky High School Player of the Decade" for the 1980s and won the Kentucky "Mr. Football" Award in 1988 while leading his team to a state championship and undefeated season. Brohm was inducted as a member of the 2014 Kentucky High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame class.
College playing career
1989 and 1990 seasons
In February 1989, Brohm committed to play football for Howard Schnellenberger's Louisville Cardinals football team. Brohm played in every game, but was relegated to backing up Browning Nagle. The 1990 Cardinals ended the season 10–1–1 in the 1991 Fiesta Bowl. Brohm played for two series during the Fiesta Bowl, but on his first series he was intercepted. He was intercepted again on his second series by Charles Garner who returned it 49-yards for a touchdown.
After Nagle graduated, Brohm became the starting quarterback for the 1991 team. Just two games into the season, Brohm and the Cardinals were facing the Tennessee Volunteers, when Brohm suffered a fracture in his right ankle, placing him in a cast for six weeks.
Brohm returned from his ankle injury to regain his starting quarterback role. In his first game back, Brohm was a two-point conversion away from knocking off #17 Ohio State as Brohm's pressured pass floated just past the arms of Ralph Dawkins. Brohm played well against the #6 Florida Gators, completing 66.6% of his passes and frustrating the Gators defense with his ability to scramble. The Cardinals ended up losing 31–17.
Brohm returned for his senior season. After taking every snap as a junior, Brohm proved he was fully recovered from his ankle injury. After defeating San Jose State to begin the season, Brohm had a dominant performance against Memphis State, throwing for four touchdowns and 219 yards—175 yards and three touchdowns of which went to Aaron Bailey. The following week, Brohm threw for a career-high 331 yards defeating the #23 Arizona State 35–17. Brohm led the Cardinals to the #17 ranking. During the game against #24 West Virginia, Brohm threw for 270 yards. However, he had two very critical turnovers, including an interception with 3:02 to play. The Cardinals were upset by the Mountaineers 36–34. After a 7–1 start, the Cardinals accepted a bid to be the home team in the 1993 Liberty Bowl Brohm broke the index finger of his passing hand in Louisville's final regular season game. His finger was repaired with a steel plate and pins, and he wasn't allowed to throw until the week before the bowl game. Trailing 7–3 going into the 4th quarter against the Michigan State in the Liberty Bowl, Brohm threw for two touchdowns in the final minute leading the Cardinals to a 18–7 victory.
Brohm's statistics are as follows:
|NCAA Career Totals||46||23||15–10||402||715||5,451||56.2||38||28||7.6||130.0||267||-41||-0.2||6|
After Trinity High School, Brohm was drafted in the 7th round of the 1989 MLB Draft by the Montreal Expos. He turned down the Expos offer, choosing instead to accept a scholarship to play football for the University of Louisville. However, after one year of college football, he had a change of heart and decided to pursue both sports, playing minor league baseball during his college summers.
He held a workout for all MLB teams prior to the 1990 MLB draft and was selected by the Cleveland Indians in the 4th round, and chose to play baseball and football. He played for two summers in the minor leagues before quitting to focus on football. The Indians also pushed him to drop football entirely.
San Diego Chargers
After going undrafted in the 1994 NFL Draft, Brohm signed with the San Diego Chargers in 1994 as an undrafted free agent. Brohm beat out Trent Green to become the teams third-string quarterback. Brohm spent the season as the third-string quarterback never appearing in a game as the Chargers lost Super Bowl XXIX.
Brohm signed with the Washington Redskins for the 1995 season.
San Francisco 49ers
Brohm signed with the San Francisco 49ers in 1996. Brohm got to play in the season opener for the 49ers in 1997 after Steve Young was sacked seven times and left the game with a concussion. Brohm was in line to start Week 2 for the 49ers, but he cracked a bone near the base of his middle finger on his passing hand. Brohm didn't make a start, instead Jim Druckenmiller made the start for the 49ers.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Brohm signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1998, competing with Steve Walsh and Scott Milanovich for the backup quarterback position behind Trent Dilfer. After just three plays in the Buccaneers first preseason game, Brohm scrambled and slid to avoid being hit, but on the slide Brohm tore a ligament in his right thumb. Brohm had to decided between wearing a cast for 4 weeks hoping his thumb would heal, or have surgery and heal the thumb properly, but ending his season. Brohm elected to have surgery on his thumb, where a pin was placed in his thumb during his August 10 surgery. Two weeks later, Brohm was placed on injured reserve, ending his season. After the season, Brohm requested he be waived by the Buccaneers, and the team granted him his wish on April 25, 1999.
On October 28, 2000, Brohm was drafted with the fourth overall pick in the XFL Draft by the Orlando Rage of the XFL. Brohm briefly left the Rage when he signed with the Browns. Brohm battled with Brian Kuklick for the starting quarterback position with the Rage. Brohm won the starting job, and led the Rage to a season opening win 33–29 over the Chicago Enforcers. During the 2001 XFL season, he owned the league's highest QB rating at 99.9 and was named first team All-XFL. He was at the receiving end of a particularly brutal attempted sack by Shante Carver in the Week 5 contest against the Memphis Maniax; although it knocked Brohm out of the game and led to a hospital visit, the actual play resulted in a touchdown pass, and Brohm was back on the sidelines in a neck brace later in the game. When Brohm returned to play the next week, he gave a memorable speech when asked why he returned to play so soon:
Let me answer that question by asking you two questions – One, is this or is this not the XFL? Yes, it is. Two, do I or do I not currently have a pulse? Yes, I do. Let’s play football.
Brohm later admitted fearing that the statement would make him an even greater target for the Rage's opponents. A shoulder injury in the Week 7 contest against the Los Angeles Xtreme ended Brohm's playing career.
Brohm was, along with Las Vegas Outlaws running back Rod Smart, one of the few players to openly embrace the XFL's approach to football, fully immersing himself in the kayfabe and sports entertainment. Brohm had hoped to put the nickname "J Bro" on the back of his jersey, but his fellow players voted not to use jersey nicknames.
Career passing stats
On December 19, 2001, Brohm was named the head coach of the Louisville Fire arena football team. The Fire started the 0–7 before they defeated the Carolina Rhinos 31–28 to improve to 1–7. The Fire would finish the season 2–14.
On December 24, 2002, Bobby Petrino hired Brohm to return to his alma mater as quarterbacks coach. Brohm worked with first-year starting quarterback Stefan LeFors, helping him to a 3,145-yard passing season, the third-best in school history. LeFors finished first in the nation in passing efficiency and completion percentage and was named First Team All-Conference USA. During Brohm's second season, he helped recruit his brother Brian Brohm, who was one of the most sought-after recruits in the nation. LeFors and Brian split time at quarterback, similar to how Jeff split time as a freshman with Nagle. LeFors and Brohm led the Cardinals to the 2004 Liberty Bowl and a No. 6 ranking to end the season. Brian finished the season as the Conference USA Freshman of the Year, and LeFors was named First-Team All-Conference USA and the Conference USA Co-Offensive Player of the Year. In 2005, Brian took over the starting role permanently, leading the Cardinals to an 8–2 regular season and a berth in the 2006 Gator Bowl. Brian tore his ACL, forcing the Cardinals to start walk-on Hunter Cantwell. Cantwell completed 15 of his 37 passes for 216 yards, three touchdowns, and three interceptions. In 2006, Brian Brohm led the Cardinals to a victory over No. 15 Miami (FL), but he injured his thumb in the process, forcing Cantwell into action. Cantwell led the team to victories over Kansas State and Middle Tennessee, with Cantwell throwing for a career-high 340 yards against Middle Tennessee, before Brian's return. The Cardinals finished the 2006 season, 12–1, establishing a record high victories for the school in a single season and winning the 2007 Orange Bowl.
After Petrino left Louisville to take the Atlanta Falcons head coaching job, new Cardinals head coach Steve Kragthorpe kept Brohm on his staff as an assistant head coach and passing game coordinator. Brohm declined an offer to join Nick Saban's staff at Alabama in 2007 to stay with Louisville. The Cardinals offense went in a different direction under the coaching change. Brian threw 473 times, which was second in school history for a single season, but he broke the then record for passing touchdowns in a single season with 30. He was promoted to offensive coordinator for the 2008 season. Cantwell in his first season as the starting quarterback threw 16 touchdowns and 16 interceptions and averaged 207.8 passing yards a game. The Cardinals went 5–7, failing to go to a bowl for the second year in a row. The Cardinals offense averaged 377 yards a game, ranking 45th overall.
Brohm joined his former college head coach Howard Schnellenberger at Florida Atlantic for the 2009 season as the quarterback coach. Brohm later revealed that he had been in contact with Schnellenberger for a month prior to the hiring. Brohm inherited Rusty Smith, whom had won the 2007 Sun Belt Conference Offensive Player of the Year, to coach. After just 7 games, Smith had 1,915 yards passing to go along with 14 passing touchdowns and just 5 interceptions, but he sprained his non-throwing shoulder in the 7th game against Middle Tennessee, ending his career. With the injury, Brohm worked with Jeff Van Camp to replace Smith. Van Camp finished the year 1,372 yards passing and 12 touchdowns with just two interceptions and a win in the Shula Bowl.
He then took a position coaching quarterbacks on Ron Zook's staff at Illinois. The move to Illinois reunited Brohm with Paul Petrino, whom Brohm worked with at Louisville. Brohm and Petrino were tasked with replacing Juice Williams, and in spring camp Nathan Scheelhaase emerged as the leading candidate. The Illini named Scheelhaase the starting quarterback as a redshirt freshman, and he made strong progress throughout his first two starts. With Scheelhaase's running ability, Brohm made sure that he taught him to keep running throughout his reads before deciding to run. Scheelhaase really began to start hitting his stride during a 44–10 defeat of Purdue, throwing for four touchdowns. The Illini finished the regular season 6–6, earning a berth in the 2010 Texas Bowl.
In year two, Brohm worked to improve Scheelhaase's passing in accuracy, decisiveness and drop backs. Scheelhaase got the Illini off to a hot start going 6–0, even defeating #22 Arizona State and Brohm had acknowledged his development as a passer. The Illini would finish the regular season 0–6, costing Zook his job. Brohm was promoted to interim offensive coordinator during the 2011 Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.
In 2012, new head coach Garrick McGee hired Brohm to serve as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at UAB. In an interview prior to the 2012 season, Brohm said he regretted not accepting the position of offensive coordinator with Alabama. The offseason began with redshirt freshman quarterback Austin Brown pushing Jonathan Perry for the starting role. After an 0–3 start, Brohm named Brown the new starting quarterback. In four of his first five starts, Brown threw for 300 yards. The Blazers finished the season 3–9, with the offense finishing 53rd in the country with 417 yards per game.
After a single season at UAB, Brohm decided to take a pay cut and take the assistant head coach and offensive coordinator position at Western Kentucky University, where he was again coaching under Bobby Petrino. Brohm had to replace Kawaun Jakes, who was the career leader in passing touchdowns and third in passing yards for the Hilltoppers. They selected Brandon Doughty to be the starter during the 2013 season, and was aided by the return of the NCAA single season all-purpose yards record holder, Antonio Andrews. The Hilltoppers began the season with an upset of SEC foe Kentucky. Brohm's lone season as offensive coordinator did not disappoint, as the Hilltoppers averaged 459 yards per game, and both Doughty and Andrews set the single season record for yards in a season in passing and rushing respectively.
On January 8, 2014, Petrino was hired to his former position of head coach at Louisville in place of Charlie Strong, who moved to replace Mack Brown at Texas. Brohm was named as a candidate to become head coach later that same day. On January 10, 2014, Brohm was officially named the head coach of the Hilltoppers. On August 29, 2014, his Hilltoppers opened the season with a 59–31 win over the Bowling Green Falcons, scoring more points than during any game in the 2013 season. The team broke school records for total yards in a game (702) and most points scored since moving to the FBS level. Doughty also set three individual records. The following week Brohm suffered his first defeat as a head coach, losing 42-34 to Illinois. After losing 5 out of his first 8 games as a head coach (four of which were by a single possession), the Hilltoppers rallied to win their last four regular season games. This included a win over undefeated #19 Marshall 67-66 in overtime, again breaking the school record for points in an FBS game for the third time of the season. The Hilltoppers 7–5 regular season earned them a berth in the 2014 Bahamas Bowl where they played Central Michigan Chippewas. Leading 49-14 heading into the fourth quarter, the Chippewas rallied to be down 1-point, but their failed two-point conversion with no time left led to a Hilltoppers victory.
Brohm made it clear that he wanted to build the Hilltoppers program by recruiting players from Kentucky. Brohm brought in thirteen players from the state of Kentucky in first full recruiting class. On September 3, 2015, Brohm won his first game as head coach against an SEC opponent, a 14–12 road win against Vanderbilt. On September 12, Western Kentucky won, 41–38, against Louisiana Tech, giving Brohm his tenth win as Western Kentucky's head coach. On September 19, Brohm and the Hilltoppers lost their first game of the season, 35–38, against Indiana. The Hilltoppers then won four straight games before traveling to Baton Rouge, Louisiana to face #5 LSU, where they were defeated 48-20. The Hilltoppers would win four straight again to finish the regular season 10–2 (8–0), winning the East Division of Conference USA. On December 5, Brohm led Western Kentucky to a 45–25 victory over Southern Miss in the 2015 Conference USA Football Championship Game, leading Western Kentucky their first ever Conference USA championship in school history. The win moved Western Kentucky into #25 in the A.P. Top 25. This was Western Kentucky's first appearance in the AP Top 25 since moving up to FBS. He finished his second season as the Hilltoppers' head coach with a 12–2 record, with losses against Indiana and LSU, and a victory in the 2015 Miami Beach Bowl over South Florida, 45–35. After being trailing, 0–14, in the second quarter, Western Kentucky scored 24 points as they held South Florida off the rest of the game.
After defeating Rice in the opening game of the 2016 season, Western Kentucky traveled to #1 Alabama. It was the first time Western Kentucky had played #1 ranked team since the 2012 season. Western Kentucky would then cruise through its non-conference game against Miami (OH) before being defeated by Vanderbilt on the final play of the game. After a blowout victory over FCS Houston Baptist, Western Kentucky was defeated by Louisiana Tech. This was Western Kentucky's first conference lost since 2014, which also came at the hands of Louisiana Tech. In week seven, the Hilltoppers narrowly defeated MIddle Tennessee 44–43 in double overtime, and the first winning streak over Middle Tennessee since 1980. The Hilltoppers then won their next five games by a minimum of 28 points, once again winning the East Division advancing to the 2016 Conference USA Football Championship Game. The Conference USA Championship Game was with a highly anticipated re-match against Louisiana Tech. In a game that went on to be the highest scoring FBS conference championship game to date, Western Kentucky finally defeated Skip Holtz's Bulldogs 58–44. On December 4, 2016, Western Kentucky accepted a bid to the 2016 Boca Raton Bowl.
On December 5, 2016, Brohm was hired by Purdue University to be the head coach of the football team. Brohm went to work right away on recruiting primarily the offensive and defensive lines as well as wide receiver bringing in five graduate transfers to help get instant depth, including two offensive linemen and a wide receiver. In his first ever game as head coach, Purdue was defeated by #16 Louisville 35-28 in a close game played at Lucas Oil Stadium. The next week Brohm achieved his first win at Purdue with a 44–21 victory over Ohio and followed that with a blowout win (35-3) at Missouri. Purdue hosted #8 Michigan the next week in a game that many Purdue fans saw as the turnaround they had been waiting for since Tiller, despite losing 28-10. The game saw a sold out Ross Ade Stadium, its first sell out since 2008 in Joe Tiller's final game as the Purdue head coach. Heading into week 8, Jeff Brohm and his team went into High Point Solutions Stadium to face Rutgers as they looked to improve 4-3 on the season, but would fall short on a two-point conversion, losing the game 12-14. However, Purdue would win the 4th game of the season against Lovie Smith's Illinois team[better source needed]. This would be the first time Purdue had won 4 games in one season since Danny Hope's final season at Purdue. In week 13, Purdue went into Iowa and won their biggest game of the season with a 24-15 win over the Hawkeyes, and Purdue would follow it up with the high point of the season taking the Old Oaken Bucket in a win against Indiana 31-24. Not only was it a rivalry game, but both teams were 5-6, meaning the winner would become bowl eligible. Purdue's win was the first for the program against their hated rivals since 2012. The six wins was enough to get Purdue into the 2017 Foster Farms Bowl, where they would face Arizona. The bowl game made Brohm the only the second head coach in Purdue history, along with Joe Tiller, to take Purdue to a bowl game in their first season as head coach.
Before the bowl game, there was much speculation surrounding Jeff Brohm around the head coaching vacancy at Tennessee, some sources even saying that he had accepted the job. However, the two sides never met, killing the speculations after a few hours.
Purdue would head into the Foster Farms Bowl game as slight underdogs, but would go on to beating the Arizona Wildcats 38-35, thanks in help to an Elijah Sindelar touchdown pass in the closing minutes of the game.
Head coaching record
|Won||Lost||Ties||Win %||Finish||Won||Lost||Win %||Result|
|LOU||2002||2||14||0||.125||4th in Midwestern||-||-||-|
|Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (Conference USA) (2014–2016)|
|2014||Western Kentucky||8–5||4–4||3rd (East)||W Bahamas|
|2015||Western Kentucky||12–2||8–0||1st (East)||W Miami Beach||24|
|2016||Western Kentucky||10–3||7–1||T–1st (East)||Boca Raton‡|
|Purdue Boilermakers (Big Ten Conference) (2017–present)|
|2017||Purdue||7–6||4–5||T–3rd (West)||W Foster Farms|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title or championship game berth|
His younger brother Brian is a football coach and a former quarterback who last played for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Another brother, Greg, played wide receiver at Louisville and had a stint in the Canadian Football League at the Edmonton Eskimos camp before being cut.
Brohm married his wife Jennifer L. Hawkins in 2003. They have two children, Brady and Brooke.
Brohm played for:
- Howard Schnellenberger: Louisville
- Bobby Ross: San Diego Chargers
- Norv Turner: Washington Redskins
- George Seifert: San Francisco 49ers
- Tony Dungy: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Mike Shanahan: Denver Broncos
- Chris Palmer: Cleveland Browns
- Galen Hall: Orlando Rage
Brohm served as an assistant coach for:
- Bobby Petrino: Louisville, Western Kentucky, (FBS)
- Steve Kragthorpe: Louisville, (FBS)
- Howard Schnellenberger: Florida Atlantic, (FBS)
- Ron Zook: Illinois, (FBS)
- Garrick McGee: UAB, (FBS)
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