Assistant Head Coach / Special Teams Coordinator / Defensive Line
Mike Elston started his career with Brian Kelly in 2004 as defensive line coach at Central Michigan. Considered one of the top young coaches in college football, Elston is smart, organized and intense on the field. In the future Elston will have a chance to be a very successful head coach in college football.
Elston is a top young coach who learned from his playing career at Michigan what is needed to be a winner.
After his three-year (1994-96) letter-winner career at Michigan, Mike stayed four more seasons working as an assistant to the football camp director before spending the final two years as a graduate assistant.
He then moved to Eastern Michigan from 2001-2003 as recruiting coordinator and defensive line coach before being hired by Brian Kelly when he took over at Central Michigan.
After working his first year along the defensive line at Central Michigan, Mike Elston would spend a year as Co-Defensive Coordinator (2005) and then the following season as Special Teams Coordinator and linebackers coach.
When Brian Kelly moved to Cincinnati for the 2007 season it was Mike Elston who took over responsibilities of recruiting as the teams recruiting coordinator. In only 65 days Elston helped Cincinnati sign a 22-member class that lacked quality recruits prior to him taking over the job.
That first class pulled in paid major dividends this season as players like Armon Binns, Sam Griffin, Zach Collaros, Drew Frey, Alex Hoffman and John Hughes all came to Cincinnati after Elston took over recruiting responsibilities for the Bearcats.
Mike would hold this position for his first two seasons at Cincinnati while also coaching tight ends and heading up the Bearcats special teams where punter Kevin Huber earned All-American honors both seasons.
The 2009 season saw Mike make a move back to the defense side of the ball as defensive line coach working with Bob Diaco. The pair had worked together at Central Michigan and made the transition on the defense to the 3-4 easier during the spring.
With the ability to coach on both sides of the football and be a solid asset in recruiting Mike Elston would be one of the best young coaches Brian Kelly could hire for his first Notre Dame staff.