Desmont "Des" Kitchings enters his first year at the Air Force Academy as running game coordinator and running backs coach in 2011. Kitchings comes to the Academy from Vanderbilt, where he served as running backs coach from 2008-10 and offensive coordinator in 2010. Kitchings was also the program's running game coordinator and co-special teams coordinator while on the Commodore's staff.
He was a key player in the development of true freshman tailbacks Warren Norman and Zac Stacy, who ranked 1-2 on the team in rushing in 2009 with Norman producing one of the finest all-purpose campaigns ever by an SEC freshman. He ended the season as the SEC Freshman of the Year and a freshman All-American.
Prior to his time at Vanderbilt, Kitchings coached at Furman from 2004-07 where he was the tight ends coach and special teams coordinator. He helped mentor three Paladins to all-conference recognition: Larry Hedden, Willis Sudderth and John Rust. During his tenure at Furman, the Paladins went 10-3 and captured a conference title in 2004, and advanced to the NCAA I-AA national semifinals in 2005.
Kitchings was a standout receiver/return specialist at Furman. As a senior in 1999, Kitchings helped Furman win the first of three conference championships. He ranks among the school's all-time leaders in receptions and returns. As a specialist, he averaged a SoCon record 29.3 yards on 33 kickoff returns, four of which went for touchdowns - also a school record.
A consensus all-Southern Conference selection as both a receiver and returner, Kitchings earned All-America honors as a return specialist in 1999 after leading the NCAA I-AA division in return average.
Kitchings was selected by Kansas City in the 2000 NFL Draft, and spent four years on practice squads and rosters of NFL squads. Kitchings completed a health and exercise science degree at Furman in 2000. He also became the youngest inductee into the Furman Athletics Hall of Fame in 2009.
A native of Wagener, S.C., Kitchings and his wife, Heather, have three children.