Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Coaching Search Update ***(Rumors Inside)***

For the last couple days now I've heard some rumors flying around about Todd Grantham's search for a new "defensive ends" coach. I use that term loosely, as I'm not really convinced that will certainly be the position that is filled by the hire. As I'm sure most of know, Grantham has the ability to coach anywhere along the defensive front without really any dropoff. This gives him the ability to find the best coach available, not necessarily the best "defensive ends" coach.

While I was perusing some potential names last week, a few lit up my radar. Troy defensive line coach Maurea Crain and NC State defensive line coach Keith Willis were the two that really tickled my fancy. Both have exceptional resumes (if you care to take a look at them) and know how to put a great deal of pressure on the opposing team's QB. Just take a look at cfbstats.com and see how they stack up (Crain and Willis).

I heard a peep a few days ago that the staff asked permission to speak to Willis and this was, in fact, confirmed by Anthony Dasher of UGASports on Monday. So I'm pretty convinced that he his high on the radar, but Dasher also said that they are looking for a guy with NFL experience, so that basically rules Willis and Crain out. With the current situation that Mark Richt sits in, I'm not sure that Willis would take the position anyway with the improvement that NC State has made in the last four years. Maybe the rumor has legs though. He'd be a great hire, in my opinion. But, again, because of NC State's gradual improvement, I still don't think we could lure him away.

This is why Crain makes for an interesting candidate. He's relatively young and has had a lot of success at Troy, though he does tend to get some higher quality talent than most smaller schools because of Troy's academic situation. He was the recruiting coordinator at Valdosta State, so he knows the Georgia prep landscape and has had the numbers (in terms of sacks/QB hurries/ TFL) that you look for, but is currently coaching in a 4-2-5 scheme with a hybrid LB/S. That last part is concerning, but I don't think any other coach on the staff has experience with the 3-4, so it's not as bothersome as it might initally appear.

I'm all for Crain or Willis or whomever can get some pressure on the QB. Hell, if Joe T. knew how to do it, I wouldn't mind giving him that job too. He'd bring that real old school approach... (cause "new school" isn't as cool to say as "old school") make our guys work harder (cause they weren't working hard before)... tweet about how sore and tired they were (cause they weren't sore or tired before).. and of course would install mandatory FIBER ONE team-funneling challenges- for team building of course.

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