Scott Satterfield has enjoyed success at every stop of his 23-year playing and coaching career, most notably in his 20 years at Appalachian State University.
In 17 seasons as an Appalachian State player (1991-95) and assistant coach (1998-2008, 2012), he helped lead the Mountaineers to three NCAA Division I FCS national titles, eight conference championships and played a large role in virtually re-writing the program’s offensive record book. Now in his third season as the head coach at his alma mater, Satterfield has led Appalachian to its first-ever Division I bowl appearance.
The 20th head coach in school history has spearheaded Appalachian State’s nearly unprecedented transition from FCS to FBS. He has led the Mountaineers to victories in 17 of their last 19 games dating back to the mid-point of last season, including a Sun Belt Conference-record 11 wins in 2015.
App State’s 11 victories in 2015 are also the most ever by a program in its first season of bowl eligibility after completing the transition from I-AA/FCS to I-A/FBS.
Appalachian State dominated its way to this season’s 11-2 mark, winning its 11 games by an average score of 40-15 and suffering its only two losses at the hands of then-ranked No. 1 Clemson and Sun Belt champion Arkansas State.
The Mountaineers’ historic season continued late into December, as they downed Ohio, 31-29, in the Raycom Media Camellia Bowl on a field goal with no time remaining after App State’s nine-play, 73-yard drive over the final 107 seconds culminated in a Zach Matics’ 23-yard game-winning field goal. Appalachian is the first team to win a bowl game in its initial season as a full-fledged FBS squad.
The Mountaineers ranked among the Sun Belt’s top two in 19 of the league’s 33 statistical categories and are among the top 30 in the nation in scoring offense (19th - 37.2 ppg), scoring defense (13th - 18.3 ppg), total offense (26th - 470.7 ypg), total defense (12th - 318.0 ypg), rushing offense (6th - 268.8 ypg), rushing defense (28th - 133.6 ypg), pass-efficiency offense (5th - 168.54 rating) and passing defense (17th - 184.4 ypg).
Thirteen Mountaineers earned all-Sun Belt recognition under Satterfield’s tutelage in 2015, including a league-high-tying five first-team honorees and the conference’s Defensive Student-Athlete of the Year, defensive end Ronald Blair.
Appalachian State’s historic 2015 campaign came on the heels of a breakout season in 2014, when Satterfield led the Mountaineers to an impressive 7-5 record in their first full season in the NCAA Division I FBS ranks. The 7-5 mark in 2014 included a six-game winning streak to close the season, all in Sun Belt play.
Despite fielding only two senior starters, Appalachian State excelled on both sides of the ball in 2014, ranking among the Sun Belt’s top three teams in 14 of the league’s 33 official statistical categories. Most notably, the Mountaineers led the Sun Belt in total defense by allowing just 347.5 yards per game, a mark that was 53 yards per game less than they allowed in their final FCS campaign in 2013. The Mountaineers also ranked third in the conference in scoring offense (35.7 points per game) and ranked second in both rushing offense (241.8 ypg) and rushing defense (152.3 ypg).
Eleven of Satterfield’s Mountaineers earned all-Sun Belt recognition in their first year in the conference, highlighted by first-team honorees Kendall Lamm and Doug Middleton and Sun Belt Freshman of the Year Taylor Lamb.
The program showed signs of promise in Satterfield’s first season at the helm in 2013, despite posting an un-Appalachian State-like 4-8 record. The short-handed Mountaineers struggled to a 1-6 start but rebounded to win three of their final five games, including a 38-14 rout over future Sun Belt Conference rival Georgia Southern. Appalachian’s only losses during the five-game stretch run were a hard-fought 35-28 defeat at the hands of SoCon co-champion Chattanooga and a 45-6 loss at Georgia, a game that the Mountaineers led early and trailed just 17-6 late in the third quarter.
In all, Appalachian State is 21-15 in Satterfield’s three seasons at the helm, including a 13-3 record and second- (7-1 in 2015) and third-place (6-2 in 2014) finishes in Sun Belt play.
Satterfield was named Appalachian State’s 20th head coach on Dec. 14, 2012. He is only the sixth Appalachian alumnus to ever serve in the role, joining Graydon Eggers ‘24 (1928), Francis Hoover ‘40 (1945), Press Mull ‘47 (1951), Bob Broome ‘40 (1956-58) and Carl Messere ‘61 (1965-70).
After a three-year stint away from his alma mater, Satterfield returned to Appalachian State in January 2012 as the Mountaineers’ assistant head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Despite inheriting a unit that managed just 390.2 yards per game in 2011 (Appalachian’s lowest production in eight seasons), lost three players that would go on to play in the NFL and returned only five starters, the Mountaineer offense flourished under Satterfield’s direction in 2012. Appalachian State ranked among the nation’s top 25 in total offense, passing efficiency, passing yardage and scoring and, for the first time in school history, produced a 3,000-yard passer, 1,000-yard rusher and 1,000-yard receiver in the same season.
Prior to his return to Appalachian, Satterfield spent one season as the passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Toledo (2009) and two as the offensive coordinator at Florida International (2010-11).
In his only season at Toledo, the Rockets ranked 20th nationally in passing (278.5 yards per game) and 14th in total offense (438.3 ypg), averages that were 89 and 104 yards better than the season prior to his arrival.
In two seasons at FIU, Satterfield helped lead the Golden Panthers to the first two bowl appearances in school history, including a victory over Toledo in the 2010 Little Caesars Bowl. After going 3-9 and averaging 321 yards of offense the year prior to his arrival, FIU won 15 games and averaged 380 yards in Satterfield’s two seasons as offensive coordinator.
Before his first three seasons in the NCAA Division I FBS ranks, Satterfield spent the first 11 seasons of his coaching career at Appalachian State, mentoring the Mountaineers’ wide receivers (1998), running backs (1999-2002) and quarterbacks (2003-08). He was an integral part of Appalachian’s transition from a power-I to a spread offense in 2004 and the five record-setting offensive campaigns that followed.
With Satterfield serving as the Mountaineers’ primary play-caller, Appalachian ranked among the nation’s top 20 in the five major offensive statistical categories (scoring, rushing, passing, passing efficiency and total offense) 17 out of a possible 25 times from 2004-08, highlighted by an explosive 2007 campaign when the Mountaineers led the nation with a school-record 488.3 yards of total offense per game.
As Appalachian State’s quarterbacks coach, Satterfield has overseen the development of the most prolific signal-callers in school history. Most notably, he coached both Richie Williams (2003-05) and Armanti Edwards (2006-08) to all-America recognition and was Edwards’ mentor for the first of his back-to-back Walter Payton Awards (NCAA Division I FCS Player of the Year) in 2008. Prior to coaching the Mountaineers’ quarterbacks, Satterfield also mentored a 1,000-yard rusher (Jimmy Watkins — 2001) and the 11th-leading rusher in school history (Jerry Beard — 2000-02).
As a student-athlete at Appalachian, Satterfield made 27 starts at quarterback from 1992-95 after redshirting as a true freshman in 1991. He earned first-team all-conference recognition as a senior in 1995 after passing for 1,461 yards and rushing for 649 more to help lead the Mountaineers to the only undefeated, untied regular season in school history (11-0) and a 12-1 final record. He graduated from Appalachian State with a B.S. in physical education in 1996.
Satterfield and his wife, Beth, a former track-and-field student-athlete at Appalachian, reside in Boone and have three children — sons, Bryce and Isaac, and daughter, Alli.
SATTERFIELD AT A GLANCE
Full name: Fredric Scott Satterfield
Birthdate: Dec. 21, 1972 (42 years old)
Hometown: Hillsborough, N.C.
High School: Orange H.S., 1991
College: Appalachian State, 1996 (B.S., physical education)
Wife: Beth (Burleson)
Sons: Bryce and Isaac
1991-95: Appalachian State (quarterback)
1998: Appalachian State (wide receivers)
1999-2002: Appalachian State (running backs)
2003-08: Appalachian State (quarterbacks)
2009: Toledo (passing game coordinator/quarterbacks)
2010-11: Florida International (offensive coordinator/QBs)
2012: Appalachian State (assistant head coach/off. coord/QBs)
2013-present: Appalachian State (head coach)