Jay Bubak (last name is pronounced BOO-bock), begins his eighth season on the Jackrabbit coaching staff as co-defensive coordinator, after returning to his role as linebackers coach in 2011.
Bubak spent his first two seasons at SDSU coaching the linebackers, aiding in the development of two-time all-Missouri Valley Football Conference selection and pro prospect Derek Domino. From 2007-10 he coached the defensive backs, mentoring five different players who earned all-conference recognition, including Cole Brodie, who signed a free agent contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the summer of 2011.
Bubak returned to coaching the linebackers in 2011, tutoring Mike Lien to second-team all-MVFC honors after tallying a team-best 100 tackles.
During the 2009 season, Bubak helped mentor a defense that ranked among the national leaders in scoring defense for much of the year, before finishing the campaign ranked 16th after allowing an average of 17.4 points per game — its best showing in six seasons at the Division I Football Championship Subdivision level. Four times the Jackrabbits held an opponent without an offensive touchdown. Additionally, SDSU posted top-20 national rankings in three other categories: pass efficiency defense (fourth, 99.55); rushing defense (14th, 104.33 yards per game) and total defense (17th, 289.5 yards per game).
During the Jackrabbits' run to the Great West Football Conference title in 2007, SDSU led the league in scoring defense (22.2) despite playing four teams that ranked in the top 15 for scoring in the FCS. The Jackrabbits also led the GWFC in turnover margin (plus-14), creating a league-best 31 takeaways. In addition, SDSU ranked second in pass defense (202.7 yards per game) and sacks (26). Five defensive players earned first-team all-GWFC recognition, with three others honored on the second team.
Both of SDSU's starting cornerbacks, Brock Gentile and Tyler Koch, were honored on the all-GWFC First Team as they combined for 10 interceptions. Koch also was named to All-America squads by The Associated Press and Sports Nework after tallying a league-best seven interceptions, three of which he returned for scores.
SDSU also played for the Great West title in 2006 as the Jackrabbit defense allowed only 21.4 points per game.
A 1993 graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Neb., Bubak previously spent six seasons at Missouri Western State College in St. Joseph, Mo. After joining the Griffons' coaching staff as secondary coach in 1999, Bubak was promoted to defensive coordinator in 2000, a position he filled for five seasons.
While at Missouri Western, he helped lead the Griffons to a share of their first-ever Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association title in football during the 2003 season, finishing the season 9-3 overall and 7-2 in league play. The 2003 squad led the league with 30 turnovers forced and 33 sacks, paced by All-America free safety Pierre Thomas, who led all divisions of the NCAA with 14 interceptions.
As a player, Bubak was a four-year letterman and team defensive most valuable player at safety for Nebraska Wesleyan University, in Lincoln, Neb, from 1989-92. He received all-conference and CoSIDA Academic All-America recognition, while also serving as team captain. NWU won two conference championships and made a pair of NAIA playoff appearances.
Bubak began his coaching career in 1993 at Nebraska Wesleyan as an assistant in charge of the secondary. After a two-year stint as an assistant at Chase County High School in his native Imperial, Neb., he moved on to the University of South Dakota, where he served two years as a graduate assistant working with the linebackers and one year as a full-time assistant coach, working with the defensive backs and special teams. Two players he tutored, Matt Chatham and Josh Stamer, went on to pro careers.