David Padilla, a native of Oxnard, California, begins his 10th season with the Buccaneers, and fifth year coaching kickers/punters in 2018. Padilla has been part of a CSU staff that has helped lead the Bucs to a program-record 41 wins over the last five seasons.
2017 saw the Bucs special teams continue to earn national recognition led by sophomore First Team All-Conference punter Kyle Reighard pacing a unit that finished sixth in the FCS in net puting at 39.09 yards per attempt. Junior placekicker Tyler Tekac was instrumental in a pair of key Big South wins in 2017 with a game-winning 43-yard field goal in the final second at Gardner-Webb, as well as the game-winning 42-yard field goal in the season finale at Liberty. Ethan Ray took over long snapping duties and provided a steady hand for a unit that did not botch a snap all season, while David Kennedy was among the Big South kickoff leaders as well as serving as the team's holder.
In 2016, Padilla was part of a CSU staff that steered the Bucs to a second straight Big South championship and FCS playoff berth. Truett Burns rounded out his career as a four-year starter at punter, and long snapper Joseph Smith again earned all-conference honors. David Kennedy also gave the Bucs' a reliable leg handling kickoffs.
Padilla helped CSU capture an outright Big South Conference title and FCS Playoff bid for the first time ever in 2015. Burns continued to execute his role as CSU's punter, and Tyler Tekac emerged to solidify the Bucs' kicking game. Smith, meanwhile, earned second team All-American honors from STATS FCS.
In his previous five seasons with the Buccaneers he spent time assisting with the defensive line and in 2012 was the Bucs' tight ends coach. Prior to coming to Charleston Southern, Coach Padilla spent two seasons with the Ventura College Pirates (CA), where in 2007 they won the Western State Conference championship. Padilla started coaching football in 1995 at Adolfo Camarillo High School (CA) and in 2001 moved to Thousand Oaks High School (CA).
Coach Padilla also starts his fourth season as Director of Football Operations for the Buccaneers. His responsibilities include assisting the head coach with the daily operations of the program as well as coordinating all logistics for both home and away football games. He oversees the academic progress of each student-athlete on the team and works closely with the Student Success Center to ensure they are on track for graduation, as well as the NCAA Compliance office to ensure each athlete meets all eligibility requirements for compliance. His responsibilities also include serving as the in-house recruiting coordinator, summer football camps coordinator and the supervision of all student assistants/managers.
Coach Padilla also serves as the campus director for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and functions as athletic department chaplain under the direction of the campus minister. He is an avid baseball fan and is currently the Voice of Buccaneer Baseball, working the PA for all Buccaneer home baseball games. He is the founder of the Iron Sharpens Iron Leadership Academy which is a program designed to assist young men and women in their pursuit of acceptance into of the United States Service Academies. As a result of the success of this program and the character and integrity of its alumni, Coach Padilla was recognized by the West Point community as one who supports the mission, goals, and ideals of the United States Military Academy. In 2009 he was the recipient of the prestigious Friends of West Point Award and granted membership into the West Point Association of Graduates.
He earned an associate’s degree in Global Studies with an emphasis on foreign policy and diplomacy from Ventura College in 2009. He is a 2011 graduate of Charleston Southern University where he earned a bachelor’s degree in American History with a minor in Christian Leadership. He earned his Master’s degree in Military History from Norwich University in February 2014.