NEW ORLEANS – Jon Sumrall, who led Troy University over the past two seasons, has been named the 42nd head football coach of the Tulane Green Wave. 

Sumrall returns to the Crescent City after previously serving as an assistant from 2012-14, at a time where winning has become the standard. Before Sumrall arrived, the Green Wave made back-to-back American Athletic Conference championship game appearances, won the AAC title in the 2022 season, defeated USC in the Cotton Bowl, and won 23 games combined over the last two seasons. 

“They’ve had great momentum from the last two years and that matters,” Sumrall explained. “It’s hard to get momentum started.”

Sumrall is no stranger to success or momentum. In fact, he knows that winning feeling very well and his resume speaks for itself.  Over the past two seasons as the head coach at Troy, Sumrall tallied an impressive 23 wins himself, a pair of double-digit winning streaks, two Sun Belt Conference titles, Sun Belt Conference Coach of the Year honors and was twice named a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Conference Coach of the Year honor. If anything, Sumrall is bringing his own wave of momentum back to this city. Perhaps, this is just what Tulane football needs. 

There is a lot to be said though about the person that Jon Sumrall is beyond just being a recent coaching rehire. As someone who was the co-defensive coordinator at Tulane for three seasons in a time where games were played with almost empty crowds at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome until Yulman was built, the program was begging to reach a goal of breaking .500, and a devastating tragedy happened with one of his own defensive players, Sumrall had every reason to not return. 

So why did he come back? 

He has hope. And hope is the only thing stronger than fear. 

Sumrall is a big believer in this program. He is the light at the end of the tunnel for the brief moment of insecurity that Green Wave nation felt when Wille Fritz left for Houston on December 3rd. At Sumrall’s formal introductory press conference in Jill H. and Avram A. Glazer Family Club, he projected his expectations for the trajectory of this program in front of boosters, Green Wave fans and current Tulane employees.

 “I’m telling you right now we’re going to make the College Football Playoff and we’re gonna win it,” Sumrall manifested. 

Tulane isn’t a P5 school. No one is expecting them to make this projection happen. Then again, no one expected Tulane to beat Caleb Williams and the rest of USC in the Cotton Bowl. Tulane fans flooded AT&T Stadium and won 46-45. The College Football Playoff is expanding to 12 teams next season, providing an opportunity for the best mid-major programs to fulfill Sumrall’s manifestation. Sumrall has already shared that recruiting starts at home as he looks for the best football players in the boot to join the Green Wave and ultimately to make this happen. 

Candidly, Sumrall shared his appreciation for the previous memories he has made in New Orleans, it’s culture and overall energy. Sumrall exclaimed, “if you’re juiceless, you’re useless- and this city’s got a lot of juice.” 

An honest testimony was shared on social media by one of the best defensive leaders on Tulane’s roster this past season. Before Jarius Monroe, a 2023 AAC All- Conference First Team selection and CB for the Green Wave, declared for the 2024 NFL Draft he spoke upon Sumrall’s hiring on X saying, “You definitely wanna be in this city with this coach he is amazing.”

Although Jarius Monroe wasn’t coached by Jon Sumrall, someone very close to him was. Darion Monroe, his brother, was a four-year starter as a Green Wave safety from 2012-2015 under Jon Sumrall. Sumrall and Monroe spent their first year in the American Athletic Conference together where they impressively snapped a 10-game losing streak to Houston as well as an 18-game losing streak in games played outside the state of Louisiana. Monroe had one of four team interceptions that game. It feels very full circle to have Sumrall back in a bigger position now, squeezing the potential out of every player on this Tulane roster like he always has. 

Sumrall is no stranger to the potential and upkeep of success that this this special program has. Rightfully so, Sumrall is here so he could finish what he started. Tulane welcomes him with high hopes to fill big shoes. Pressure is a privilege. The seeds were sowed a decade ago. The time is now to reap them.