Mid-American Conference

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Central Michigan adds former Oregon State interim coach Cory Hall to staff

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After coaching the second half of the season for Oregon State in 2017, Cory Hall is now making his way to the MAC. Hall has officially been added to the Central Michigan coaching staff, where he will serve as the team’s secondary coach and defensive pass game coordinator.

“We brought Cory in, and he made a presentation to the defensive coaching staff,” CMU head coach John Bonamego said in a released statement. “(Defensive coordinator) Greg Colby and the rest of us were impressed with his preparation and what he had to say. “There is no doubt he is a high-energy coach, and he’s a great fit for our program.”

Hall was named the interim head coach at Oregon State midway through the 2017 season following the removal of Gary Andersen. According to The Oregonian, Hall did not interview with new Oregon State head coach Jonathan Smith to remain a part of the Beavers coaching staff in 2018.

Ex-Florida WRs coach added to Toledo’s coaching staff

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Jason Candle‘s revamped Toledo coaching staff will have a little bit of an SEC feel to it.

Thursday morning, the UT football program announced the hiring of Kerry Dixon as running backs coach.  Dixon had spent the 2017 season as the as the wide receivers coach at Florida, but wasn’t retained by new head coach Dan Mullen.

Additionally, Kevin Beard, who was Tennessee’s receivers coach last season, has been hired as director of player personnel as well as assistant recruiting coordinator.

“I am very excited about the addition of Kerry Dixon and Kevin Beard to our staff,” said Candle in a statement “Both men are great teachers and bring with them experience from the highest levels of college football. Kerry will do a great job with our running backs. Kevin will play an important role in developing our young Rockets and also brings valuable recruiting experience to the table.”

Dixon has previously served as the running backs coach at Florida International (2014) and Florida Atlantic (2012-13).

And, finally, Candle also announced that director of high school relations Ricky Ciccone has been promoted to nickel backs coach.  He will also retain his previous title.

Former UMass, Penn State TE Adam Breneman retires from football

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Former All-American tight end Adam Breneman has announced he will be retiring from football for good. Citing prolonged health concerns that stem back to his time at Penn State, Breneman wrote in a blog post the extent of the injury he suffered in 2014 was even more challenging to come back from than many had publicly known.

This is the second time Breneman has made the decision to retire, and this one will likely stick. Breneman retired briefly from the game in 2016, after his injury concerns at Penn State proved to be too risky to continue playing. Breneman had significant damage in his left knee that the All-American says required “complicated surgery and a long recovery process.” Doctors suggested his playing days would be over, but Breneman felt his knees became good enough to give a shot at playing in the NFL one more chance, which led him to revive his playing career at UMass. However, it was during his time at UMass when reality resurfaced for Breneman.

This past season things began to deteriorate quickly. Even though I enjoyed on-field success, I knew my knee was getting rapidly worse with every game I played. The consistent dream of playing in the NFL was my motivation to push through the pain. I knew what was happening, but I was afraid to accept it and be disappointed yet again.

When the season ended, I hoped with some time off and without the physical rigors of the season, my knee would begin to feel better. However, once I started training daily for the NFL draft in January 2018, I realized my situation had not improved. After additional medical evaluations and creative treatments, my doctors and I have come to the realization that there is no solution that will allow me to continue to play football.

Breneman was a key recruit of former Penn State head coach Bill O’Brien and a key face of the first full recruiting class to join Penn State following the hefty sanctions levied against the program in the Jerry Sandusky scandal’s fallout. Along with Christian Hackenberg, Breneman helped keep a key recruiting class mostly together.

Breneman appeared in 11 games for the Minutemen in 2017 with 764 receiving yards and four touchdown catches. The previous season, Breneman had 808 receiving yards and eight touchdowns for UMass after two years off from football. He appeared in 11 games for the Nittany Lions in 2013 and caught three touchdowns with 186 receiving yards in his first and only season on the field in Happy Valley.

Former Arizona DL Marcus Griffin announces graduate transfer to Central Michigan

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Former Arizona defensive tackle announced Saturday he will spend his final season of college football as a Chippewa. Griffin announced in January that he would leave Tucson, but was treated as a senior throughout the season.

A 4-star recruit out of powerhouse Bellevue High School in Bellevue, Wash., Griffin was one of the heralded recruits in Arizona’s 2014 class, but struggled to find his footing as a Wildcat. He appeared in just 11 games over his four seasons in Tucson, recording five tackles.

Griffin revealed his commitment to Central Michigan on Twitter.

Central Michigan went 8-5 in 2017, finishing second in the MAC West before falling to Wyoming in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. The Chips finished 24th nationally and second in the MAC in yards per play allowed.

Griffin could slide into the starting lineup for Central Michigan as defensive tackle Chris Kantzavelos was a senior in ’17.

Bowling Green officially adds FCS assistant to Mike Jinks’ staff

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Mike Jinks‘ coaching staff at Bowling Green is whole yet again.

Following up on reports that surfaced earlier in the week, BGSU confirmed that Jacob Schoonover has been hired as linebackers coach. This will mark Schoonover’s first on-field job at an FBS program.

“I am extremely grateful to Coach Jinks and (Defensive Coordinator) Carl Pelini for giving me the opportunity to be a member of the Bowling Green family,” Schoonover said in a statement. “I am excited to do my part in executing the plan laid out by Coach Jinks and Coach Pelini for this defense.

“I look forward to developing relationships with the young men in this program and the members of the Bowling Green community.”

Schoonover had spent the past seven seasons as linebackers coach at Illinois State. In 2012, he added the title of special teams coordinator at the FCS school.

As BGSU noted in its release, Jinks has completely remade the defensive side of the ball since the end of the 2017 season by hiring Pelini (HERE), Jimmy Williams (defensive line), LaMarcus Hicks (secondary), DeJon Gomes (cornerbacks, HERE) and Schoonover.

This past season, the Falcons ranked 126th nationally in total defense (506.6 yards per game), 120th in yards per play (6.61) and 123rd in scoring defense at 38 points a game.