Brandon Frase joined the Valpo football program as a nickelbacks coach for the 2019 season.
Frase was part of the defensive staff for a 2019 Valpo team that ranked in the Top 5 in the PFL in scoring defense (32.0, fifth), total defense (381.6, fourth), rushing defense (184.2, fourth) and passing defense (197.3, fifth). The defense also thrived in critical down-and-distance situations, as the team’s opponent third-down conversion percentage of 32.4 ranked second in the league and its opponent fourth-down conversion percentage of 46.2 was third.
In Frase’s first season, Valpo ranked in the Top 5 in the PFL in scoring defense for the first time since 2004. The team finished fourth in the PFL in total defense, its best ranking in that area since 2007. The rushing defense (fourth) and passing defense (fifth) cracked the top five in the league for the first time since 2007 and 2008, respectively. On third down, the Valpo defense permitted opponents to convert just 32.4 percent of the time, the team’s best third-down defense since holding opponents to 28.7 percent in 2000. The 2019 campaign marked the first time Valpo finished in the top five in the PFL in scoring defense, total defense, rushing defense and passing defense all in the same season in over 19 years.
Frase was part of a unit that had a knack for dropping opponents behind the line of scrimmage as Valpo racked up 70 tackles for loss, the program’s most since 2007 and tied for the fourth-most in a single season in program history. Valpo had seven or more tackles for loss in four different games, a feat the team had achieved just once in the previous three seasons combined.
Frase was part of the first victory of the Landon Fox head coaching era on Oct. 26, 2019 as Valpo topped Stetson 19-10. That win came behind a dominant defensive showing as Valpo allowed 10 points or fewer in a game for just the fourth time in a 19-year span. Stetson entered the contest ranked first in the FCS nation in total offense. The Hatters came into the game with a 5-1 record, the first time Valpo beat a team that stood at 5-1 or better since 2003.
Before coming to Valpo, Frase served as a varsity assistant at the high school level, first at Cuyahoga Falls High School in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio (July 2015 – January 2018) and then at Orange High School in Pepper Pike, Ohio (August 2018 – December 2018). At both schools, he was the wide receivers and defensive backs coach. He also spent the 2016 campaign as the co-defensive coordinator at Cuyahoga Falls.
During his time at Orange, Frase helped the team to a 5-0 start for the second time in school history and to an eventual OHSAA playoff berth, the third in school history. He coached multiple players who received all-conference honors including a safety who was a 2018 first-team selection after racking up 84 tackles. Prior to his prep coaching career, Frase played wide receiver and safety at Ohio Wesleyan during the 2013 and 2014 seasons. He graduated from Kent State University with a degree in physical and health education in December 2018.
What They’re Saying About Coach Frase
Jonathan Gannon, Indianapolis Colts Defensive Backs/Cornerbacks Coach: “Brandon will bring an outstanding work ethic and a lot of juice to Valpo. He will connect with the players and get the most out of them. This is a great hire for Valpo’s program.”
Deon Broomfield, Indiana State Cornerbacks Coach: “Brandon was always eager to learn and spend extra time to perfect his craft as a player and young coach. He has a bright future in the coaching industry.”
Adam Bechlem, Orange HS Head Coach: “Brandon is hard working and passionate about football and teaching the game to young men. He is competitive and respects the work involved in winning.”
Tom Mitchen, Orange HS Defensive Coordinator: “Brandon is a young and hungry coach who is learning his way in this profession the right way. He is never afraid to learn something new and soaks everything in like a sponge. He knows the game and knows what it takes to get the best out of his players by valuing the relationships he builds with them.”