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Updated: Brent Venables takes Clemson defensive coordinator job

Brent Venables

Unless Oklahoma defensive coordinator Brent Venables is messing with multiple media members, and that’s not out of the question based off the will-he-won’t-he Twitter brouhaha today, it appears the longtime assistant to Bob Stoops has finally moved on to another job.

Venables to confirmed to multiple media members, including CBS’s Bruce Feldman and the Tulsa World‘s Dave Sittler, that he is indeed leaving to take the defensive coordinator job at Clemson. The rumors of a move had been building over the past several days and came to a dramatic climax today that had Clemson media reporting Venables was a close to being a “done deal” and Oklahoma media reporting he would stay.

Venables takes over for Kevin Steele, who will not return to the Tigers after they gave up 70 to West Virginia in the Orange Bowl. The terms of Venables’ contract haven’t been released, but the move reportedly took as long as it did because of steps Clemson was taking, such as a background check.

A press conference announcing the hire is set for Friday. However, the Clemson camp is still approaching the hire as a “reported” manner. From Clemson’s SID:

“I know there have been many reports concerning Clemson’s new defensive coordinator.  I will not issue a release until all background checks have been completed.  We don’t anticipate any problems, but until they are complete I can not confirm a hiring nor schedule a press conference… there will be no press conference today and doubt there will even be an announcement.”

With Venables, um, “reportedly” out, Mike Stoops will now likely be Oklahoma’s sole defensive coordinator.

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25 Responses to “Updated: Brent Venables takes Clemson defensive coordinator job”
  1. clemtig86 says: Jan 19, 2012 12:10 AM


  2. drummerhoff says: Jan 19, 2012 12:40 AM

    Tell me again … Why is this guy so highly regarded?

  3. wvuclassof12 says: Jan 19, 2012 1:12 AM

    Only gave up 48 to WVU in a BCS game.

    Good hire.

  4. lonewolf330 says: Jan 19, 2012 1:16 AM

    some of you people with these petty comments need to grow up man for real

  5. jonkybon says: Jan 19, 2012 6:27 AM

    I know Okla only gave up 33 TDs compared to 42 by Clemson, but Clemson’s defense was ranked 58 compared to 62 by OU. Is Venables truly an upgrade?

    I haven’t watched OU much, would an OU fan please tell me if BV runs a read and react or an aggressive scheme. Does he prefer the 43, 34 or some other combination?

  6. woebegong says: Jan 19, 2012 7:45 AM

    Would he have made any difference for the orange bowl? It’s the athletes Sweeny, not the coaches, get it. You can coach what you have, but if you don’t have it, you don’t have it. Recruit some more defensive people. The debacle that was the Orange Bowl, showed Sweeney, to have not prepared his team to play WVU. I don’t care who is coaching, if they aren’t prepared, they can get their butts whipped. This college ball, and it is true what they say about, “On Any Given Saturday”. Sweeney can hire whomever he wants as his DC, but the Orange Bowl proves, they were not prepared by any coach on that team, to play that day. The DC at Clemson became the scape goat, but every coach on the team, failed to do their job.

  7. burntorangehorn says: Jan 19, 2012 8:39 AM

    Rankings be damned, Venables runs a strong defense. Facing the strongest offenses in the country in the Big 12 will do that, but even so, look at BV’s track record since 2004. They’ve fielded one of the nation’s top defenses, particularly against the run, almost that entire stretch. Look at their national award winners/honorees, statistical strengths, turnover numbers, and draft picks, and you’ll get a pretty good picture. This is coming from a Longhorns fan, of course.

  8. thegamecocker says: Jan 19, 2012 9:20 AM

    Trouble, trouble, trouble…..70 points to WVU for a new bowl record! A dubious distinction at best. Tick, tick, tick……K-DABO!!!!

    You can only blame others so many times before it comes back to you.

  9. superfbfan says: Jan 19, 2012 9:31 AM

    Thanks for the first laugh of the day! Go look at the Texas Tech game one more time please. Good coaches don’t let that happen….

  10. gorilladunk says: Jan 19, 2012 9:37 AM

    Good Luck to Venables at Clemson. He’s done a good job at OU and will do a nice job for the Tigers. He won’t have to game plan against Big12 offenses on a weekly basis and he is an excellent recruiter. @superfbfan….it happens to EVERYONE if they stay in coaching long enough. Don’t kid yourself.

  11. jonkybon says: Jan 19, 2012 9:41 AM

    Despite setting a new record for giving up the most points in a bowl game, they still didn’t come close to the largest margin of loss set by SC in last years SEC Championship game.

    Lets also not forget that Clemson led or were tied in the Orange Bowl well into the second quarter. The offense came to play even if the defense didn’t.

    Preparing the squads and calling the plays is the responsibility of the coordinators. Steele failed to prepare the defense and called an even worse game. He should be blamed. The offense came to play. I was at the game. I saw WR’s tackled with the ball five yards away. I saw Ellington score a TD (refs arms in the air), big screens zoomed in and confirmed only to have it called a fumble and a WV TD. Last time I checked a ball stripped from a player in the end zone is not a fumble. I’m not saying that is the reason Clemson lost. I’m saying the O came to play and the defense couldn’t stop a squad of grandmothers.

    I also laugh at the claim Clemson doesn’t have athletes on defense. They had at least two players that will be selected in the first three rounds at the game (Thompson, Branch and possibly Sensabaugh).

    The two classes Dabo has recruited have both been ranked ahead of SC. This years class with only 19 players commited is currently ranked sixth, while SC with 23 players committed ranks fifteenth.

  12. wakiash says: Jan 19, 2012 9:41 AM

    Smart move by Venables–go where you are wanted. You can’t fight nepotism, especially when it is ingrained in the system. Brother Bob took a giant step backwards re-hiring his brother.

  13. thegamecocker says: Jan 19, 2012 9:49 AM

    Carolina has beaten you THREE STRAIGHT YEARS in games that weren’t close! Take your class rankings but we’ll take the WINS! I might add that when last we played against Clemson’s “non-stop offense”, CAROLINA STOPPED THEM!

    Take your whipping, your class ranking, and your new DC and we’ll see what happens again next season. But now, it is time for you to STFU!

  14. woebegong says: Jan 19, 2012 9:59 AM

    Clemson needs to make sure they get more consistent play from their QB this year. Sometimes you could watch him and he looked like a barn burner and other times, he looked like he was playing his first game. The coaches need to work with this kid a little harder this year, and help him out in that area.
    As for the new defensive coach, he is probably going to be a lot better off in Clemson then he would have been in Oklahoma. Glad the HC didn’t have too many more brothers, or you could change the name of the football team, to Stoops Brother INC.

  15. jonkybon says: Jan 19, 2012 10:07 AM

    Gamecock, you sure do talk big for a program that has never won anything. Big deal you won the last three meetings and lost the five previous? Clemson players will be fitted for their ACC Championship rings despite their poor Bowl game and a meaningless match against the fifth place SEC team.

    I realize you are only a SC fan, so you don’t understand that the recruiting has a lot to do with the team that is fielded. With the exceptions of Branch, Thompson, Allen and Ellington the majority of the players this year were freshmen and sophmores. This means Clemson is an up and coming team. It will have its OC for only the second season and its new DC will be his first. The also aren’t currently under
    NCAA investigation for major violations. When a 5 star athlete at Clemson violates a team rules he is suspended when it means something. To bad Spurrier has never been able to make that claim.

    Yes enjoy your win against Clemson and your fifth place SEC finish. Enjoy your first bowl victory in what 10, 15 years? Y’all always have had delusions of grandeur and much lower expectations. That happened in what is now last year. We’ll see what happens in the season ahead.

  16. thegamecocker says: Jan 19, 2012 10:13 AM

    If Clemson were in the SEC, ya’ll would not have been in a bowl game. A losing record is more like it. time for you to leave. It’s the PRESENT…not good living in the past. Let’s see what Nov results bring.

  17. burntorangehorn says: Jan 19, 2012 11:56 AM

    superfbfan says:Jan 19, 2012 9:31 AM

    Thanks for the first laugh of the day! Go look at the Texas Tech game one more time please. Good coaches don’t let that happen….
    Very cerebral analysis. Obviously one individual game overwhelmingly nullifies thireen years of empirical evidence. If you ever think about taking that penchant for statistical modeling and analysis to the political arena, you will single-handedly make the world forget about George Gallup and Nate Silver.

  18. jonkybon says: Jan 19, 2012 12:10 PM

    If there weren’t 35 bowls SC wouldn’t have won their first in the last 15 years. So Clemson wasn’t particularly good at night games this last year (1-3). They were 9-1 during the day. Clemson played two SEC teams this season. Clemson did lose to SC, but made Auburn feel like step children. You remember the same Auburn team that whipped your cocks. All you can do is speculate and base your hate on two games. The fact is this past season is as much a part of history as the 1981 season.
    You and I measure success differently. I believe first place in a lesser conference is a superior finish to fifth place in the best. There is no reason to believe Clemson can’t repeat in the ACC and I assure you they could not possibly play any worse in their bowl game. A realistic SC fan knows they’re not likely to finish any higher than fourth in the SEC. Bama and LSU are still loaded. UGA lost one starter on defense and three on offense. Thats fewer than the underclassmen that left SC. UGA was the third ranked defense and lost only a CB and has the #5 rated recruiting class with 16 only commits. So its most probable they will repeat, esp since SC doesn’t luck out and play them week 2 any more.

  19. burntorangehorn says: Jan 19, 2012 12:24 PM

    jonkybon says:Jan 19, 2012 12:10 PM

    You and I measure success differently. I believe first place in a lesser conference is a superior finish to fifth place in the best.
    South Carolina placed fifth in the Big 12? Who knew?

  20. papafrankin says: Jan 19, 2012 1:37 PM

    I have been an OU fan all my life (66 yr) and have seen a lot of coaches come and go. My opinion of Brent Venables as a coach and as a person is mixed. Some good, some nuts and some so-so. I have met B.V. and this guy is wound very tightly. What you see on the sidelines is what you see in person. Put him face to face with a pit bull and that puppy is going to go home with its tail between its legs! I am disappointed in Bob Stoops hiring Mike Stoops and putting him back as Co-DC. Mike has shown his colors, and I don’t blame him for going to Arizona, but what entitles him to return to his old job and as an equal to B.V. other than blood?
    I have two complaints about B.V.’s coaching. 1. He does not seem to be able to change his defensive scheme in the middle of a game no matter how bad his plan is going. 2. Venables should know by now that defensive backs tackling around the legs is much better than trying to knock the opposition ball carrier down by hitting them high with a shoulder tackle. Hell, at least hang on to them and pray for help to arrive.

    Thanks Brent for your time with the Sooner Nation. I hope you are not with Clemson for very long. You are Head Coach material and deserve your shot!

  21. jonkybon says: Jan 19, 2012 2:05 PM

    burntorangehorn says:
    Jan 19, 2012 12:24 PM
    jonkybon says:Jan 19, 2012 12:10 PM

    You and I measure success differently. I believe first place in a lesser conference is a superior finish to fifth place in the best.
    South Carolina placed fifth in the Big 12? Who knew?


    When did Alabama, LSU, Arkansas and UGA all join the Big 12? SEC is still the best. How many National titles in a row for them now? Aren’t they 9-1 in BCS National Championship games and the one loss was to another SEC team? Not knocking the Big 12 by any stretch, but they aren’t they SEC.

  22. gtizzo says: Jan 19, 2012 2:17 PM

    HUH!! Brent, Your leaving a storied program like Oklahoma who is in the top 10 wins all time and go to Clemson?! You want to make a splash go to another storied program USC, Michigan, ND not Clemson. This is a huge step down Brent your resume and stock are dropping…fast!!!

  23. normtide says: Jan 19, 2012 2:59 PM

    Hmmm, it will take more talent on defense for Clemson for sure, but I think they are going in the right direction. Defense wins, some say offense fills seats, but arena football may prove that wrong. Bottom line, easiest way to win is not let the other team score.

  24. thegamecocker says: Jan 19, 2012 6:43 PM

    South Carolina is 3-0 against Clemson and will win again.

    We beat Georgia which really makes us the 4th best team in the SEC. I’ll take that. Carolina has recruited the #1 player in the state the last 4 years and will most likely do again.
    Academically speaking, Clemson is the easiest school to gain acceptance at in the entire ACC. All the other schools are light years ahead. Your BBall program is stagnant but so is Carolina’s…but we have won that contest the last 2 years also. Shall we talk Baseball? I didn’t think so….I asked politely yesterday to STFU! I will repeat that request again. You just don’t get it.
    Relax….go milk a cow.

  25. burntorangehorn says: Jan 20, 2012 10:52 AM

    jonkybon, by any metric, the Big 12 was the strongest conference in 2011.

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