Former Camelback athlete named Vanderbilt football coach
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Former Camelback athlete named Vanderbilt football coach

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  • Craig Pletenik/Phoenix Union High School District

Former Camelback student-athlete Derek Mason (Class of ’87) was named the head football coach for Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. 

Mason, 44, was the defensive coordinator at Stanford, one of the top defensive units in college football.  He played college football at Northern Arizona University 1987-91, starting at defensive back his final two years. 

This is his first head coaching job. 

Mason has coached in the NFL with Minnesota, St. Louis, New York Giants and Oakland Raiders. 

His college assistant jobs include Ohio University, New Mexico State, Utah, Bucknell, Idaho State, Weber State and San Diego Mesa College. 

Mason inherits a Commodore team that has back-to-back nine-win seasons, despite playing in the tough Southeastern Conference.

“There was only one place,” Mason said at his introductory press conference.  “When this job at Vanderbilt came available I wanted that job.  This job means everything to me. This is where I want to be.  This is where I plan on spending the rest of my career.”