Coming up with a list of candidates for the WR coach position was tricky because it doesn’t have the exposure, or the pay, as say a coordinator or HC. Given those limitations, I considered candidates mainly from non-BCS programs and even one from the FCS level. Reviewing their credentials, many of these I feel are some gems that we should pounce on before other teams do. I’m not sure how realistic it would be to get one of these guys, but the prospect of coaching at a BCS program could be a bonus. When considering candidates, I took a long look at their team’s national ranking in Passing Offense over the past few years. There are no team categories for receptions or total receiving yards on the NCAA football stats database. Passing Offense can be a good proxy given that you need receivers to actually catch the balls in order to have an effective passing attack.
Again, when chiming in, please give some rationale behind your suggestions.
Thanks. Go Bruins!
Brent Pease (Asst HC/WRs – Boise State)
Coach Pease has served as Asst HC for Boise State for the last 4 years, and served as WR coach for the last 5 years. In the years he served as WR coach, Boise State ranked 52nd, 23rd, 13th, 29th and 6th nationally in Passing Offense. This year, he coached two stud wideouts in Austin Pettis and Titus Young. Boise State has always had pretty solid receivers during the Chris Petersen era and I think Coach Pease would be a solid mentor to our receiving corps. Prior to Boise State, Pease served as OC at Baylor, Kentucky, Northern Arizona and Montana. He brings a wealth of knowledge to the field and could certainly teach the fundamentals.
Lincoln Riley (OC/QBs – East Carolina)
Although very young in age (26), Riley has amassed a pretty impressive resume to date. He served as an assistant under Mike Leach at Texas Tech for a total of 7 years, the last 3 as a WR/Inside Receivers Coach. He started as a walk-on QB at Texas Tech, and decided to assist as a student coach after one year. As WR coach in 2007, he coached two WRs to 100-reception seasons, Danny Amendola and Michael Crabtree. That year, Crabtree broke the NCAA freshman records in receptions (134), receiving yards (1,962), and TDs (22). As current OC for East Carolina, he produced an offense that ranked 7th nationally in Passing Offense, 23rd in Total Offense, and 17th in Scoring Offense. The question is whether a WR coaching position all the way on the other side of the country will lure him away from an OC gig with ECU. Maybe if he’s given the title of WR coach/Co-OC? As a Texas native, he’s very familiar with the recruiting landscape there and can help improve our presence in Texas.
Kenny Edenfield (OC/Inside WRs – Troy)
Troy has been one of those teams that consistently win every year and manage to get into a bowl game. I’ve never really paid attention to their offense, but they have statistically been very strong over the last few years. Edenfield has played a large role in that. He came to Troy as a receivers coach in 2008 and was promoted to OC in 2010. Since he’s been at Troy, they have ranked 33rd, 4th and 12th nationally in Passing Offense. This year, his offense averaged over 296 passing yards per game, with an average of over 11 yards per completion, and 33 receiving TDs. He mentored Jerrel Jernigan to a 1,000+ yard receiving season in 2009, only the 4th Troy wide out to go over the 1,000-yard mark.
Shannon Dawson (OC/QB coach – Stephen F Austin)
Okay, I know there may be hesitation dipping into the FCS ranks, but hear me out. Dawson is only in his 2nd season as OC for SFA, but has managed to direct an offense that has been ranked 1st nationally in Passing Offense in the FCS in the last two years. Since he took over as OC in 2009, his offenses have averaged over 343 passing yards per game, with over 42 receiving TDs each season. Prior to coming to SFA, he served as OC at Millsaps for 2 years where his squad ranked 5th in Passing Offense and amassed over 4,000 yards of total offense each year.
My Dark Horse Pick: Tony Levine (Asst HC/Special Teams/Inside WRs/TEs – Houston)
This one is a long-shot as he came in the same time as Coach Sumlin, but I had to include him for the sake of completeness. Coach Sumlin has established one of the most prolific passing offenses in college football at Houston. Since his arrival in Houston, their Passing Offense has been ranked 2nd, 1st and 5th nationally. I’m sure the drop in ranking this year had a little bit to do with our knocking out two of their QBs. That being said, Levine would be huge in mentoring our receivers. In 2009, he had 2 receivers go over 1,000 yards receiving. Again, he’s a long-shot pick as I’m sure Coach Sumlin and his staff aren’t going anywhere soon.
My Wouldn’t it be Interesting Pick: J.J. Stokes
He doesn’t have any substantial coaching experience per se, but it would be awesome to bring a Bruin receiving great back to Westwood to smack the young bucks into shape.