The 2013 season is Travis Stepps' 10th as a member of the coaching staff at Southern Illinois and his eighth year as a full-time assistant. He came to SIU as a graduate assistant coach in 2004 and has been SIU's secondary coach, specifically in charge of the cornerbacks, since 2006. Stepps is the lone holdover from the Jerry Kill staff. Stepps' players have received 11 All-Conference accolades in his tenure at SIU and he has coached a pair of All-Americans in Craig Turner and Korey Lindsey.
Turner was an honorable mention All-American in 2007, and Lindsey became just the second player in school history to be named an All-American in three separate seasons. Lindsey was a third team All-America selection by The Sports Network in 2008 and was voted a first team All-American by the AP in 2009 and 2010, becoming just the third Saluki to ever repeat as a first team All-American. In 2010, Lindsey received the FCS Elite Defensive Back Award from the College Football Performance Awards, recognizing him as the top performer at the cornerback position based upon his cumulative performance among all Division I FCS cornerbacks in 2008 and 2009. In addition to those awards, Lindsey was a finalist in 2010 for the Buck Buchanan Award that goes to the top defensive player in the FCS. Under Stepps' tutelage, Lindsey was a three-time All-MVFC selection and finished his career ranked third in school history in career interceptions (14) and ninth in pass breakups (16).
Stepps' secondaries have been one of the nation's leaders in interceptions. In 2009, the Saluki defense ranked second nationally with 23 picks. In 2008, Southern ranked 22nd with 16 interceptions. The Salukis have also returned 12 interceptions for touchdowns in the past five seasons under Stepps' watch. SIU ranked No. 3 in the conference in interceptions in 2011, and in 2010, Southern Illinois was second in the MVFC in passing defense and first in total defense.
Prior to joining the Southern Illinois coaching staff, Stepps spent two seasons on the staff at Washburn University. As a player, he was a two-time All-American defensive back at Pittsburg State. The Fort Scott, Kan. native earned a bachelor's degree in social studies and education from Pittsburg State and a master's degree in sports management from Southern Illinois.
He and his wife Kristina reside in Carbondale and were married following the 2012 season.