Two weeks after Michigan State abruptly “parted ways” with long-time defensive line coach Ted Gill, Mark Dantonio has landed a replacement.
The Spartans head coach announced via a press release that Ron Burton has been hired as his new line coach. Burton will replace the veteran Gill, who had spent the past nine seasons on a Dantonio-led staff, including all six in East Lansing.
“He was simply dynamic during the entire interview process,” Dantonio said in a portion of his statement. “We had an opportunity to share some ideas last year in a professional development setting, and we believe Ron is a natural fit in terms of defensive terminology and concepts. He also brings great energy and management skills to the coaching staff. We look forward to seeing Ron interact with our players and watching our defensive linemen thrive under his teaching.”
Burton has spent the past 10 seasons as the line coach at Air Force. He does have experience in the Big Ten in general and the state specifically as he was an assistant at Indiana for five seasons (1997-2001) and Eastern Michigan for two (1995-96).
“I had an opportunity to visit with Michigan State’s entire defensive staff during a professional development setting last year, and I was most impressed with everyone’s professionalism,” Burton said. “We sat and talked football, and I was simply amazed at how the staff handled things. I also had heard so many positives about Coach Dantonio from my peers – they all talked about his leadership and how he promoted a family atmosphere. Well, I got a first-hand glimpse of how the defensive staff did interact like a family.
“I’m excited about working with a Spartan defensive unit that has really established itself as one of the nation’s elite over the last three seasons. I’m looking forward to working for Coach Dantonio and alongside Pat Narduzzi, Mike Tressel and Harlon Barnett. Being presented with the opportunity to help grow and develop a great defensive front is really the icing on the cake for me.”
(Photo credit: Michigan State athletics)
A significant development has gone under the radar at Auburn, until now. Junior wide receiver Eli Stove tore his ACL during Auburn’s first spring practice and underwent surgery last Tuesday, according to Brandon Marcello of Auburn Undercover.
As a sophomore in 2017, Stove caught 29 passes for 265 yards and rushed 30 times for 315 yards and two touchdowns, which made him the Tigers’ third-leading rusher.
Stove was expected to increase his portfolio heading into 2018, but now he’ll spend the foreseeable future working simply to get back on the field. No timetable has been set for Stove’s return.
Though Stove is one of Auburn’s most talented pass-catchers, the Tigers aren’t hurting for depth even in his absence. Nine wideouts caught a pass for Auburn last season, and not one of them was a senior.
With spring practice set to kick off this week, Florida Atlantic and Lane Kiffin have found their offensive line a little lighter than previously expected.
According to the Palm Beach Post, Jack Breshears is retiring from the sport and is no longer with the football program. The Post wrote that, according to a source, the lineman “no longer had the same passion he did for football when (former FAU head coach) Charlie Partridge was there.”
Kiffin will be entering his second season with the Owls, replacing the dismissed Partridge in December of 2016.
Breshears, who will remain on scholarship but won’t count against FAU’s 85-man limit, played in six games as a redshirt freshman in 2016 before suffering a season-ending injury. He played in two games this past season the shoulder issue surfaced again.
Prior to his decision to move on from the sport, Breshears had been a candidate for a starting job this season.
Alabama will kick off spring practice later on Tuesday, but the reigning national champions will do so without an integral piece of its offensive line.
The father of the lineman, David Womack, confirmed to Rivals.com that Matt Womack will undergo surgery Wednesday to repair a broken bone in his right foot. As a result, the rising redshirt junior will miss all of the Crimson Tide’s 15 spring practice sessions.
Per David Womack, his son suffered the injury while jumping boxes during workouts.
Recovery time is expected to be in the range of six weeks, which means that, barring a setback, he’ll be fully healthy for the start of summer camp in early August.
Womack started all 14 games at right tackle in the Tide’s run to its 17th national championship last season. As a redshirt freshman the year before, Womack, a three-star member of UA’s 2015 signing class, played in nine games.
This might be the most Big 12 way ever to lose an assistant football coach.
According to both Rivals.com and the Lawrence Journal-World, Todd Bradford is leaving his post as Kansas’ linebackers coach. The reason? He’s returning to the oil business.
Bradford was fired as the defensive coordinator at Maryland in January of 2012, with that dismissal, and the health of his mother, leading to him leaving the coaching profession for a job in the oil field for the next four years.
“A guy that I was involved with and had business dealings when I was in the oil world before I was helping with my mom reached out to me,” Bradford told JayhawkSlant.com when it came to his decision-making process this time around. “He told me he had some companies that were doing really well and he needed someone to come in and help me run them. He asked if I was interested and I told him I was happy coaching.
“Then he called two more times after that and offered me the job after signing day. I turned it down twice. But each time the offer was getting a little bit better and by the third time financially it was oil world money.”
Bradford spent his first two seasons with the Jayhawks as linebackers coach. The football program had previously confirmed that he would coach safeties in 2018.