A familiar face to Liberty's football program returned to the Football Operations Center in January 2018 when CJ Holden was hired as Liberty's defensive graduate assistant.
After graduating from Liberty with a Bachelor of Science degree in sport management in May 2017, Holden served as an assistant football coach at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., during the 2017 season.
The Dutchmen posted a 7-4 record in 2017 and finished in third place in the Liberty League standings with a 3-2 conference record. Holden coached the outside linebacker, helping Union lead the league in sacks (26) and ranks second in interceptions (13).
Holden helped linebacker Jack Reiley earn Liberty League first-team all-conference honors after ranking third in the conference with 16.5 tackles for a loss, while finishing the year with 51 total tackles (30 solo, 21 assisted).
Outside linebacker Evan Gillard also earned Liberty League honorable mention all-conference honors in 2017, finishing the season with 53 tackles (25 solo, 28 assisted).
While at Union, Holden was responsible for defensive and special teams film breakdown and assisted with game planning in both special teams and defensive meetings. He also ran the scout team offense and special teams during daily practice sessions.
Holden oversaw the Dutchmen's recruiting efforts in the states of Georgia, Ohio, North Carolina and Texas.
Prior to graduating from Liberty in 2017, Holden served in a pair of roles within the Flames football program. The native of Latham, N.Y., was a student equipment manager from March 2014 to May 2017 where he oversaw the defensive student managers during practice and helped maintain inventory and the organization of the equipment room.