July 9, 1951 |
Des Moines, Iowa
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1976–1979||Cornell (IA) (assistant)|
|2016–present||Arkansas (offensive analyst) |
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
|Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award (2011)|
Ash was hired at Montana State on June 11, 2007, replacing former coach Mike Kramer. Ash was let go at the end of the 2015 season. Ash previously spent 18 seasons as the head football coach of the Drake University Bulldogs. He was born in Des Moines, Iowa.
Through the 2013 regular season, Ash's career FCS record is 158–73–1. In 34 years as a head coach, Ash's overall record is 234–126–5. His 234 victories rank in the Top 20 for active college football coaches. His Division III coaching record is 75–51–4.
Ash was a quarterback at Cornell College of Iowa and earned Little All-America honors and First Team CoSIDA Academic All-America honors as a senior in 1972. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 1973, earning an NCAA Top Five Award and an NCAA Post-Graduate scholarship.
Early coaching career
After a four-year stint as an assistant coach at his alma mater, Ash was hired as head coach at Division III Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. After posting a 4–5 record in his first season in 1980, Juniata posted winning marks in six of the next eight campaigns. Ash finished with a 51–36–3 record as the Eagles head coach.
Ash recorded a 125–63–2 record in 18 seasons at Drake, including four Pioneer Football League championships. He was named the Pioneer Football League's Coach of the Year in 2004, 1998 and 1995. Ash ended his tenure at Drake with five consecutive winning seasons.
Ash led the Bulldogs to 7–3 and 6–4 records in his first two seasons. After posting a 4–6 mark in 1991, Ash's Drake squads stood 30–8–2 over the next four years. His 125 wins stands as the most in school history.
Ash was hired in the wake of a scandal at Montana State that resulted in the firing of Kramer, who coached the Bobcats the previous seven seasons. Kramer's contract was terminated by MSU administrators in May 2007 due to off-the-field incidents that included drug and robbery charges involving current and former players.
Ash's Bobcats went 6–5 in his first season as coach.
In 2009 Ash was named second vice president of the American Football Coaches Association. Per AFCA tradition, Ash moved up to first vice president in 2010 and became president in 2011 before giving way to Harvard coach Tim Murphy the following year.
In 2010, Ash guided the Bobcats to a 9–2 regular season record, including a 7–1 mark in the Big Sky Conference. MSU defeated arch rival Montana 21–16 on the road to win the conference championship and an automatic berth to the FCS postseason. Ash was named the 2010 Big Sky Conference Coach of the Year.
In 2011, Ash guided the Cats to another share of the Big Sky Conference title, sharing with the University of Montana, and going to the NCAA playoffs. The Bobcats beat the University of New Hampshire by one in the second round before losing in the quarter finals to Sam Houston State. After the season, Ash was named the 2011 Liberty Mutual FCS Coach of the Year.
The 2012 season resulted in a one loss regular season for the Bobcats, and a share of the Big Sky Conference championship, their third in three seasons. Ash was named the Region 5 co-coach of the year for 2012 by the American Football Coaches Association.
On June 2, 2016 Ash was hired by Arkansas to be the offensive analyst for head coach Bret Bielema. 
Head coaching record
|Juniata Eagles (Middle Atlantic Conference) (1980–1988)|
|Drake Bulldogs (NCAA Division III independent) (1989–1992)|
|Drake Bulldogs (Pioneer Football League) (1993–2006)|
|Montana State Bobcats (Big Sky Conference) (2007–2015)|
|2010||Montana State||9–3||7–1||T–1st||L FCS Second Round||7||11|
|2011||Montana State||10–3||7–1||1st||L FCS Quarterfinal||7||7|
|2012||Montana State||11–2||7–1||T–1st||L FCS Quarterfinal||5||5|
|2014||Montana State||8–5||6–2||T–2nd||L FCS First Round|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title|
- "Ex-Montana State coach Rob Ash vying for Lamar job". Billings Gazette. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
- Iowa Football Camps at Drake by Drake Football Camp Coach Rob Ash
- SI.com - Writers - George Dohrmann: Montana State is coping with a crime wave - Tuesday August 7, 2007 3:29PM
- Lou Tepper and Frank Solich Named to AFCA Board of Trustees - afca.com - January 9, 2008