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Michigan Athletics

Michigan adds former Hawaii defensive cooridnator Kevin Lempa as defensive analyst

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Former Hawaii defensive coordinator Kevin Lempa has landed in Ann arbor with a new job. Michigan announced Lempa has joined the staff as a senior defensive analyst under Jim Harbaugh and defensive coordinator Don Brown.

“Kevin is a great addition to our football program and defensive staff,” said Harbaugh in a released statement. “He adds a wealth of experience and knowledge on the defensive side of the ball, and Kevin’s working relationship with Coach (Don) Brown will be a big asset for our team.”

“I am very excited and honored to become part of Coach Harbaugh’s staff,” Lempa said in his released statement. “I am also fired up to be working with Coach Brown again.”

Lempa resigned from his position with the Hawaii program following the 2016 season. He previously served as a defensive backs coach at Boston College from 2013 through 2015, when Brown was the defensive coordinator of the Eagles.

As a defensive analyst, Lempa will not have any hands-on instruction with the Michigan roster but will assist in film breakdown and other orders of business in preparing Michigan’s game plan.

Broyles Award finalists include four defensive cooridnators and one offensive cooridnator

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The Broyles Award has trimmed down its list of candidates to five candidates. It would appear coaching defense was key this season, as four of the five candidates are defensive coordinators.

Jeremy Pruitt of Alabama, Brent Venables of Clemson, Jim Leavitt of Colorado and Don Brown of Michigan are the four defensive coordinators to make the finalist cut for the award for top assistant coach in college football. The lone offensive coordinator was Matt Canada of Pitt.

The winner of the 2016 Broyles Award will be announced on Tuesday, December 6. Last year’s recipient of the award was Oklahoma offensive cooridnator Lincoln Riley.

Reports: Michigan close to filling DB coaching vacancy

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All indications seem to suggest Michigan will filling its defensive back coaching vacancy with some NFL experience. Brian Smith, a linebackers coach with the Philadelphia Eagles, is expected to be hired by the Wolverines to fill the role of defensive backs coach.

Smith would replace Greg Jackson, who left Michigan to take a job with the Dallas Cowboys. Smith previously played for Michigan defensive coordinator Don Brown at UMass in 1998 and 1999. Smith also coached under Brown at UMass. In 2007 Smith took his coaching game to the NFL with the New York Jets until he took a role with Chip Kelly and the Philadelphia Eagles last season. With a coaching turnover in Philadelphia, Michigan will keep Smith in the coaching game with his former coach and boss.

Broyles Award nominees include Kiffin, Venables, 38 others

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With the next round fo the coaching carousel about to get underway at full speed, some programs may want to pay attention to the list of names nominated for the Broyles Award. The Broyles Award is presented annually to the top assistant coach in college football, and the list of 40 nominees for this year’s award includes some names with previous head coaching experience and others about to be in line for a head coaching gig somewhere around the country.

Current head coaches who previously won the Broyles Award include Auburn’s Gus Malzahn, UConn’s Bob Diaco and Duke’s David Cutcliffe. Last year’s Broyles Award winner was Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi, who many feel could be ready for a head coaching offer in the next round of the coaching carousel.  This year Narduzzi is not a finalist for the award, but Spartans co-offensive coordinator Dave Warner is.

“This will be one of the most challenging years ever for our selection committee to choose the top 5 finalists and winner, so many assistant coaches did outstanding work this year,” David Bazzel, Broyles Award executive director.

This year’s Broyles Award winner will be announced on Tuesday, December 9 by The Rotary Club of Little Rock and sponsor Delta Dental. The award is named after former Arkansas head coach Frank Broyles, who had a solid track record of pumping out quality assistant coaches. Some of the assistants who coaches under Broyles include Barry Switzer, Jimmy Johnson, Hayden Fry, Joe Gibbs, and Jackie Sherrill.

Broyles Award Nominees

Alabama – Lane Kiffin, Offensive Coordinator
Appalachian State – Dwayne Ledford, Co-Offensive Coordinator
Arizona – Jeff Casteel, Defensive Coordinator
Arkansas – Robb Smith, Defensive Coordinator
Arkansas State University – Walt Bell, Offensive Coordinator
Boise State University – Mike Sanford, Offensive Coordinator
Boston College – Don Brown, Defensive Coordinator
Brigham Young University – Nick Howell, Defensive coordinator
Clemson – Brent Venables, Defensive Coordinator
Colorado State – Dave Baldwin, Offensive Coordinator
Duke University – John Latina, Run Game Coordinator/OL
East Carolina University – Lincoln Riley, Offensive Coordinator
FIU – Josh Conklin, Defensive Coordinator
Georgia Southern University – Doug Ruse, Offensive Coordinator
Louisiana – Marquase Lovings, Running Backs
Louisiana Tech – Manny Diaz, Defensive Coordinator
Louisville – Todd Grantham, Defensive Coordinator
Memphis – James Shibest, Special Teams Coordinator/Tight Ends
Miami – Mark D’Onofrio, Defensive Coordinator
Michigan – Greg Mattison, Defensive Coordinator
Michigan State University – Dave Warner, Co-Offensive Coordinator
Minnesota – Tracy Claeys, Defensive Coordinator
Mississippi State – Geoff Collins, Defensive Coordinator
Missouri – Dave Steckel, Defensive Coordinator
NC State – Desmond Kitchings, Running Backs/Recruiting Coordinator
Ohio State University – Tom Herman, Offensive Coordinator
Ole Miss – Dave Wommack, Defensive Coordinator
Oregon – Scott Frost, Offensive Coordinator
Penn State University – Bob Shoop, Defensive Coordinator
Stanford – Lance Anderson, Defensive Coordinator
TCU – Doug Meacham, Co-Offensive Coordinator
Temple – Phil Snow, Defensive Coordinator
UCF – Brent Key, Offensive Line Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
UCLA – Noel Mazzone, Offensive Coordinator
Utah – Kalani Sitake, Defensive Coordinator
Utah State University – Todd Orlando, Defensive Coordinator
UTSA – Neal Neathery, Defensive Coordinator
West Virginia University – Tony Gibson, Defensive Coordinator
Western Michigan University – Kirk Ciarrocca, Offensive Coordinator
Wisconsin – Dave Aranda, Defensive Coordinator

Big Ten paces Broyles Award finalists

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If one of your favorites isn’t included in the Broyles Award’s list of finalists, it wasn’t for lack of effort on the part of the award.

The honor that goes to the nation’s top assistant coach revealed its list of finalists Wednesday, with that group topping out at a whopping 40 candidates.  The award is in it 18th season and is named in honor of the legendary former Arkansas head coach, Frank Broyles.

Of the 40 finalists, 20 are from the offensive side of the ball, 19 from the defensive side and one special teams coordinator.  There are 18 offensive coordinators represented, along with 18 defensive coordinators as well.  Western Michigan running backs coach Charles Huff is the only pure position coach listed among the finalists.

The Big Ten leads all conferences with seven finalists, followed by the SEC and ACC with six apiece, the Pac-12 with five and the AAC and the MWC with four apiece.

t year’s winner was Notre Dame defensive coordinator Bob Diaco.

Alabama – Doug Nussmeier, Offensive Coordinator
Arizona – Jeff Casteel, Defensive Coordinator
Arizona State – Mike Norvell, Offensive Coordinator
Arkansas State – Kent Riddle, Assistant Head Coach, TE’s/Special Teams
Auburn – Rhett Lashlee, Offensive Coordinator
Ball State – Rich Skrosky, Offensive Coordinator
Baylor – Philip Montgomery, Offensive Coordinator
Boston College – Don Brown, Defensive Coordinator
Brigham Young – Nick Howell, Defensive Coordinator
Central Florida – Brent Key, Assistant Head Coach/Offensive Line
Colorado State – Dave Baldwin, Offensive Coordinator
Clemson – Chad Morris, Offensive Coordinator
Duke – Kurt Roper, Offensive Coordinator
Florida State – Jeremy Pruitt, Defensive Coordinator
Fresno State – Dave Schramm, Offensive Coordinator
Georgia Tech – Ted Roof, Defensive Coordinator
Houston – David Gibbs, Defensive Coordinator
Indiana – Seth Littrell, Offensive Coordinator
Iowa – Phil Parker, Defensive Coordinator
Louisville – Vance Bedford, Defensive Coordinator
LSU – Cam Cameron, Offensive Coordinator
Michigan State – Pat Narduzzi, Defensive Coordinator
Minnesota – Tracy Claeys, Defensive Coordinator
Missouri – Josh Henson, Offensive Coordinator
Nebraska – Tim Beck, Offensive Coordinator
Ohio State – Tom Herman, Offensive Coordinator
Oklahoma State – Glenn Spencer, Defensive Coordinator
Ole Miss – Dan Werner, Co-Offensive Coordinator
Rice – Chris Thurmond, Defensive Coordinator
San Jose State – Jimmie Dougherty, Offensive Coordinator
South Carolina – Lorenzo Ward, Defensive Coordinator
South Florida – Stu Holt, Special Teams Coordinator
Stanford – Derek Mason, Defensive Coordinator
Texas State – Mike Schultz, Offensive Coordinator
UCLA – Jeff Ulbrich, Assistant Head Coach/LB’s/Special Teams
Utah – Ilaisa Tuiaki, Defensive Line
Utah State – Todd Orlando, Defensive Coordinator/Safeties
Virginia Tech – Torrian Gray, Defensive Secondary Coach/Pass Game Coordinator
Western Michigan – Charles Huff, RB Coach
Wisconsin – Dave Aranda, Defensive Coordinator/LB’s