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Athletics Coaching Staff
Dave Lawson
Sports Performance Director - Olympic Sports
Coach Info:
Position: Sports Performance Director - Olympic Sports
Phone: 540-464-7951

VMI Athletics Director Dr. Dave Diles named Dave Lawson to the position of Director of Sports Performance for Olympic Sports in the early summer of 2017. Lawson works with the Keydet basketball program and other Olympic Sports, and earned the Institute's Pendleton Coaching Award in 2017-18.

Lawson previously served as Director of Strength and Conditioning at the University of Tennessee from 2012 to 2016, developing strength and conditioning programs for the Volunteer football team and monitoring programs for the additional 22 sports teams.

Throughout his career, Lawson has served as strength coach for football teams that have participated in 12 bowl games and captured four conference titles and basketball teams that have reached both NCAA and NIT tournament play. He has coached over 20 Strength and Conditioning All-Americans, eight football All-Americans, and over 100 football players either drafted or signed as free agents by the NFL.

Lawson served three years (2010-12) at University of Cincinnati as the Assistant Athletic Director of Performance and Director of Football strength and conditioning when the Bearcats won two football championships.

Lawson also held prior posts at Central Michigan University for three seasons (2007-09) where he oversaw and directed the strength and conditioning programs for all 16 CMU varsity athletic programs. Central Michigan teams claimed eight conference championships during his tenure.

Lawson spent six years (2001-06) as head strength and conditioning coach at Eastern Michigan University when Diles served as athletics director. It was Lawson's first Division I head strength coach post, and Eagle teams captured 24 total athletic championships during his tenure heading up the strength and conditioning programs.

Lawson began his career as an undergraduate at West Virginia Tech as a student assistant on both the strength and conditioning staff and football coaching staff. He was then named head strength and conditioning coach at his alma mater and served as an assistant on the football staff handling defensive lineman and special teams duties in 1992 and 1993. He moved to West Virginia University in 2004 as a graduate assistant and was named assistant strength and conditioning coach in 1995 – a post he held until 2001.

Lawson holds certifications as Strength and Conditioning Coach by the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches Association and as a Running Speed and Explosion Specialists. He is also a charter member of the Power Systems Advisory Board.

Lawson earned a bachelor of arts degree in physical education from West Virginia Tech in 1992 and a master of science degree in physical education from West Virginia University in 1995.

Lawson and his wife, Shannon, have four children, Britt Leigh, Emma, Maggie, and J.D..