Brent Venables
Venables in 2021
Current position
TitleHead coach
Biographical details
Born (1970-12-18) December 18, 1970 (age 53)
Homestead, Florida, U.S.
Alma materKansas State University (Class of 1992)
Playing career
1989–1990Garden City CC
1991–1992Kansas State
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1993–1995Kansas State (GA)
1996–1998Kansas State (LB)
1999–2003Oklahoma (co-DC/LB)
2004–2011Oklahoma (AHC/DC/LB)
2012–2017Clemson (DC/LB)
2018–2021Clemson (AHC/DC/LB)
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
Broyles Award (2016)

Thomas Brent Venables (born December 18, 1970) is an American college football coach who is the head football coach at the University of Oklahoma, a position he has held since the 2022 season. Venables served as the associate head coach, defensive coordinator, and linebackers coach at Clemson University from 2012 to 2021. He was awarded the Broyles Award in 2016.

Venables played football at Kansas State University as a linebacker from 1991 to 1992.

Early life and playing career

Venables was born in Homestead, Florida.[1] From 1989 to 1990, he played linebacker at Garden City Community College then at Kansas State University under head coach Bill Snyder from 1991 to 1992. He was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon at Kansas State.[2]

Coaching career

Early career

In 1993, Venables began his coaching career at Kansas State as a graduate assistant.[3] In 1996, Venables was promoted to linebackers coach and served in that capacity until 1998.


In 1999, Venables began coaching at the University of Oklahoma, where he served as co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach for the Sooners under head coach Bob Stoops, with whom he previously worked at Kansas State. He shared oversight of the defense with Stoops’ younger brother, Mike Stoops, until Mike became head coach at Arizona in 2004. Venables then became sole defensive coordinator, and was also promoted to associate head coach.

In 2006, he was one of five finalists for the Broyles Award for the nation's top assistant coach.[4]


Venables at Clemson.

In January 2012, after it was announced that Mike Stoops would be returning to Oklahoma to resume the defensive coordinator position he had held until 2004, Venables accepted the position of defensive coordinator at Clemson, where his salary was expected to be between $750,000 and $1 million.[5][6] Venables had been previously reported to be a candidate for the head coaching position at a number of schools including Miami,[7] Kansas,[8] Kansas State, and Texas Tech.[9]

On December 6, 2016, Venables was named the winner of the 2016 Broyles Award for the nation's top assistant coach. Venables was soon promoted to Associate head coach[10]

Clemson Diehards reported on December 6, 2017, that Venables was the second-highest paid assistant football coach in college football that year, receiving $1.7 million from Clemson. The only coach in this category receiving more money was Dave Aranda of LSU, who was paid $1.8 million.[11]

Oklahoma (as head coach)

On December 5, 2021, Venables was named the 23rd head coach at the University of Oklahoma, replacing Lincoln Riley after his departure to become the head coach at the University of Southern California (USC).[12][13]

Coaching tree

Head coaches under whom Venables served:

Assistant coaches under Venables who became college head coaches:

Personal life

Venables and his wife, have four children, 2 sons and 2 daughters.[14]

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
Oklahoma Sooners (Big 12 Conference) (2022–2023)
2022 Oklahoma 6–7 3–6 T–7th L Cheez-It
2023 Oklahoma 10–3 7–2 T–2nd L Alamo 15 15
Oklahoma Sooners (Southeastern Conference) (2024–present)
2024 Oklahoma 0–0 0–0
Oklahoma: 16–10 10–8
Total: 16–10


  1. ^ Williams, Larry. "The Story of Brent Venables". Tiger Illustrated. Retrieved December 6, 2021.
  2. ^ "Prominent Alumni". Retrieved December 6, 2023.
  3. ^ Haskin, Kevin (July 27, 1999). "Going separate ways". Topeka Capital-Journal. Retrieved September 18, 2007.
  4. ^ "2006 Finalists". Archived from the original on September 23, 2007. Retrieved September 18, 2007.
  5. ^ Haney, Travis. "OU football Brent Venables taking Clemson job". The Oklahoman. Archived from the original on January 20, 2012. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
  6. ^ Trotter, Jake (January 19, 2012). "Brent Venables to steer Tigers' defense". Retrieved January 19, 2012.
  7. ^ "Brent Venables says no thanks to Canes". Associated Press in December 1, 2010. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
  8. ^ Tait, Matt (November 27, 2011). "What's next for KU Football: Coaching candidates". Lawrence Journal World. Retrieved November 30, 2011.
  9. ^ Hoover, John E. "Brent Venables' close ties to Texas Tech AD makes him a candidate to replace Tuberville". Tulse World. Retrieved December 28, 2012.
  10. ^ Brett McMurphy [@Brett_McMurphy] (December 6, 2016). "Clemson DC Brent Venables is winner of the 2016 Broyles Award, signifying the nation's top assistant coach" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  11. ^ Forde, Mitchell. "Clemson football: Brent Venables is nation's second-highest paid assistant coach. December 6, 2017. Accessed December 8, 2017.
  12. ^ "Venables named OU's 23rd head football coach". Oklahoma Sooners. December 5, 2021. Retrieved December 5, 2021.
  13. ^ Jeyarajah, Shehan (December 5, 2021). "Oklahoma hires Brent Venables as coach: Clemson defensive coordinator to replace Lincoln Riley". CBS Sports. Retrieved December 5, 2021.
  14. ^ "Brent Venables profile".