Finding Greatness: Kiwaukee Thomas

Author: News Bureau
Posted: Monday, November 12, 2018 12:00 AM
Categories: Athletics | Pressroom | Finding Greatness

Cochran, GA


Former NFL player Kiwaukee Thomas, who grew up in Warner Robins and graduated from Ashford University, has ushered in a greater level of professionalism and competitiveness for MGA's football club team. He played college football at Georgia Southern and was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Full Name: Kiwaukee Thomas.

Title: Head Football Coach of the MGA National Club Football Association Knights.

Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Sports and Recreation Management from Ashford University in Clinton, Iowa. 

Describe your service to Middle Georgia State University and the community at large.

“Last fall, I was brought to the university to transform the MGA Knights into a perennial championship football program and immediately began to focus on raising the standard of competition and functioning as a true football program, one whose vision is to unite our university, inspire our student-athletes, and increase community involvement. I came to MGA with the mission to give student-athletes that did not receive a full scholarship, an affordable option to play competitive football for a high-caliber football program. Rebranding our football program and contributing to the growth of the MGA student population has been two of our major accomplishments. Student-athletes want to come to MGA to play football. During our first recruitment season, we had visits from over 175 football prospects and their families on our Cochran campus. We hosted two summer camps that each had over 100 participants on our Macon campus. The football team has expanded. Last year, there were 40 student-athletes that began training camp. This year, we began training camp with approximately 114 of which 14 were returners from the previous season. This increase in size allowed us to have both a traveling and a non-traveling football squad.

"Being a non-scholarship team, another accomplishment is being able to operate self-sufficiently. This past year, the football operation budget has increased by more than 1,900 percent from guaranteed game contracts, summer camp funds, and an increase in football player dues – the antithesis of a scholarship program. Our players are paying to play here and the growth in funds has allowed us to increase the team’s exposure by traveling by charter to compete against teams as far away as Wisconsin, purchase training and field equipment, and improve the overall image of the team.”

What attracted you to a position at Middle Georgia State University?

“I am from Middle Georgia and having the opportunity to return to the area and coach football student-athletes in the place I grew up is what attracted me the most to working at Middle Georgia. Being able to establish a high-caliber football program at an affordable institution with high quality education was another reason that I was attracted to Middle Georgia State University. MGA is a clean slate with so much potential - the location, the affordability, the variety of degrees, and the large student body create a recipe for success.”

What do you like best about working at Middle Georgia State University?

“I love the challenge of building something great and having the autonomy to do so. Chip Smith, the Athletic Director, allowed my vision for the team to be the university’s vision for the program. Having a supervisor that openly supports gives you the momentum to work hard. I also enjoy working with alongside my support staff of 10 coaches. They sacrifice to be here which makes me work even harder. We all have '1 Mission'  – this year’s motto – to not only being successful for ourselves, our university, but also for the team and the student-athletes we coach.”