Jeff Godfrey returning to UCF… as a WR?

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After starting 24 games at quarterback the past two seasons, Jeff Godfrey decided to transfer from UCF last December after he had all but lost his starting job.  Or because he had been declared academically ineligible for the spring semester by the school.  or a combination of the two.

Two months later, Godfrey stated that he was “very close” to transferring to FAU to continue his collegiate career.  Now, however, it appears Godfrey is on the verge of returning “home”, albeit with a positional twist.

Speaking at a booster tour stop Tuesday night, and as relayed by Florida Today through the Orlando Sentinel, head coach George O’Leary said that Godfrey will be returning to the football program, probably in May and provided he cleans a couple of issues up academically.  When Godfrey does return. O’Leary added, it will be as a full-time wide receiver and part-time QB in UCF’s version of a Wildcat package.

“I’ve met with him a couple of times and basically he has some things he has to take care of regarding school itself, some sanctions he has to deal with,” O’Leary said at the stop. “If he does that I told him that, meeting with the coaching staff and myself the last time, that I would take him back.

“And he’s coming back as a wide receiver in the program with the opportunity to help us out at quarterback in the Wild Knight package and other things using his athleticism.”

Godfrey had an outstanding true freshman season with the Knights, earning Conference USA Freshman of the Year honors after starting the final 12 games of the 2010 season and finishing 15th in the country in passing efficiency.  His performance this past season, however, took a precipitous nosedive as the sophomore, despite starting 12 games, threw as many touchdowns as interceptions (five).

Blake Bortles was officially named the Knights’ starter shortly after Godfrey’s departure, however, and UCF also added Tyler Gabbert into the QB mix after the former Missouri player transferred into the program this past January from the JUCO ranks.

Neal Brown completes Troy staff with FCS co-DC

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For the most recent addition to his Troy coaching staff, Neal Brown has dipped into the Football Championship Series.

The Sun Belt Conference program confirmed Tuesday that Brandon Hall has been hired by Brown as his new linebackers coach.  Hall had spent the past four seasons as the co-defensive coordinator at FCS Jacksonville State.

“Brandon is an outstanding defensive coach and has experience coaching at a lot of different levels,” a statement from Brown. “He is relentless on the recruiting trail and already has developed strong relationships in the areas that we believe are key. Looking at his track record, it comes as no surprise that Brandon helped build one of the top defenses in the FCS at Jacksonville State over the last four years.”

Prior to JSU, Hall had spent time at Arkansas State, Auburn and Oklahoma.

“I’m excited for the opportunity to join this program and coaching staff,” Hall said in his statement. “You can’t help but get excited as a coach when you look at what Coach Brown and the rest of this staff has done over the past three years with the Troy program. My family and I are looking forward to becoming part of the Trojan Family and continuing the strong tradition of Troy football.”

Longtime UCLA staffer Angus McClure’s hire one of two announced by Nevada

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The departure of a longtime UCLA staffer has officially been confirmed.

Late last week, reports surfaced that Angus McClure was leaving UCLA for a position at Nevada.  Tuesday, the Mountain West Conference football program confirmed that McClure has been hired as Jay Norvell‘s new offensive line coach.

McClure had been with the Bruins since 2007, serving at various times as position coach for both sides of UCLA’s lines as well as special teams.  Most recently, McClure had served as recruiting coordinator for the Pac-12 school.

McClure and Norvell have a prior working relationship as they were both on the same staffs at Nebraska and UCLA.

In addition to McClure, David Lockwood was announced as Nevada’s new safeties coach.  Lockwood was on the UNLV staff last season after spending the previous three years as the cornerbacks coach at Arizona.

“I think we made our staff stronger with these two veteran hires,” Norvell said in a statement. “I’m excited about the experience and expertise that we have added to the Wolf Pack coaching staff.”

Former Kansas State head coach Jim Dickey dies at 84

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Former Kansas State head coach Jim Dickey died on Saturday night at the age of 84.

A Texas native, Dickey played quarterback at Houston in the 1950’s and started his coaching career as an assistant at his alma mater. From there he took assistant jobs at Oklahoma State, Oklahoma, Kansas and North Carolina before landing the K-State job ahead of the 1978 season. He went 25-53-2 in seven-plus seasons on the job, which doesn’t look like much at first blush until one takes stock of where the Wildcat football program was at the time.

Dickey took Kansas State to the Independence Bowl in 1982, a 14-3 loss to Wisconsin, which was the first bowl appearance in program history. He was named the Big 8’s Coach of the Year for that season.

After back-to-back 3-win seasons in 1983 and ’84, he was let go after an 0-2 start to the 1985 campaign. The program would remain historically down until future College Football Hall of Famer Bill Snyder built the program up in the 1990’s.

Dickey finished out his career as an assistant on the pre-Steve Spurrier Florida teams before retiring in 1989. He lived at a rest home in Houston at the time of his passing, according to the Manhattan Mercury. Dickey’s son, Darrell Dickey, is the former head coach at North Texas and currently the offensive coordinator at Texas A&M.

Mario Cristobal reportedly reuniting with former assistant in Eugene

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The Oregon coaching staff is going to have a specific South Florida flavor to it. Head coach Mario Cristobal is a Miami native, a former Hurricanes player and assistant, and the former head coach at Florida International. On Tuesday, Cristobal moved to bring a fellow South Floridian with him to the Pacific Northwest.

According to Grant Traylor of the Huntington (W. Va.) Herald-Dispatch, Marshall offensive line coach Alex Mirabal is leaving the staff to reunite with Cristobal in Eugene.

Sports Illustrated‘s Bruce Feldman added Mirabal will work under Cristobal, who will handle the offensive line.

Mirabal is also a native of Miami and a Florida International graduate. He spent the first decade-plus of his career working in Miami’s high school ranks before joining Cristobal’s FIU staff as tight ends and later offensive line coach from 2007-12. He landed at Marshall in 2013 after Cristobal was forced out at FIU, where he remained until Tuesday.

Under Mirabal’s guidance, Marshall finished fourth nationally in sacks allowed at just 0.85 per game. Oregon finished 54th nationally in that same metric.