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Prior to coming to Clifton, Lawson spent three years working with head football coach Butch Jones at CMU. Lawson, who worked closely with the football program, oversaw and directed the strength and conditioning efforts for all 16 CMU varsity athletic programs.
"I've been very fortunate to work with many strength coaches during my career, but there is no one other than Dave Lawson that I would trust with the physical and mental development of our football team," said head coach Butch Jones. "Our philosophy in our strength and conditioning program models our on-the-field philosophy."
Lawson is a certified strength and conditioning coach by the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Association and a certified speed and explosion specialist by the National Association of Speed and Explosion.
He has coached seven Strength and Conditioning All-Americans, eight football All-Americans and more than 80 football players either drafted or signed as free agents by the National Football League.
In 2009, Lawson was recognized as a Master Strength and Conditioning Coach, the highest honor presented in the field, by the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches association (CSCCa). Two CMU student-athletes--football player Brian Brunner and softball player Ali Pettit--earned Strength and Conditioning All-America honors under Lawson's tutelage in 2009.
Lawson came to CMU from Eastern Michigan University, where he spent five years as head strength and conditioning coach. He developed and implemented strength and conditioning programs for all 21 of Eastern Michigan's varsity programs, as well as designing speed, agility and flexibility regimens for EMU's student-athletes.
Lawson spent seven years at West Virginia University prior to his time at EMU. He started at WVU as a graduate assistant in January 1994 before being named assistant strength and conditioning coordinator in May 1995. For six years, he worked with all 22 varsity sports with concentration on football, men's and women's basketball, volleyball, baseball, men's and women's swimming and diving and women's crew.
At WVU, Lawson worked with five football teams that played in postseason bowl games. He also worked with men's basketball teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament and National Invitational Tournament.
Lawson began his coaching career while an undergraduate at West Virginia Institute of Technology. He spent two years as a student assistant on both the strength and conditioning staff and football coaching staff. Upon graduation, he was named the head strength and conditioning coach at his alma mater. He also served as an assistant on the football staff, coaching defensive linemen and special teams in 1992 and 1993.
Lawson earned a bachelor of arts degree in physical education from West Virginia Institute of Technology in 1992 and a master of science degree in physical education from West Virginia University in 1995.
Lawson and his wife, Shannon, are the parents of four children: BrittLeigh (9), Emma (7), Maggie (3) and James (2).