December 29, 2011

Spitballing a bit here, so bear with the incoherence.

As posted by Reed, SF 49ers defensive line coach and Ron Jeremy non-stunt double, Jim Tomsula appears to be poised to join Paul Chryst’s new staff at Pitt. The initial thought was that he would be the defensive coordinator. He is loved by 49er fans. I am not sure, though, about him becoming the defensive coordinator. Why?

There are reports that Wisconsin Linebacker coach Dave Huxtable will be coming to Pitt.

Pitt: We have learned that Wisconsin linebackers coach Dave Huxtable (2011 Linebackers Coach of the Year) will be joining Paul Chryst’s staff at Pitt. Huxtable coached the linebackers at Wisconsin this season and served as the defensive coordinator at Central Florida prior to that.

Huxtable coming to the Badgers last year, was something of a coup for Wisconsin. Obviously it paid off for both, but if he’s coming to Pitt it would not be to remain the linebacker coach. The guy has been a DC at UCF, UNC and GT. The extra plus side, is in recruiting since he has spent the last 20 years in North Carolina, Georgia and Flordia berfore last year in Madison. Considering the desire to recruit in Florida, plus Pitt heading to the ACC, a coach like Huxtable would be a very good hire. Whether it is real or not, remains to be seen.


The other side of this, assuming these hires come to fruition. It appears Keith Patterson, the defensive coordinator last year and presently Pitt’s interim head coach, is going to be out.

I admit to some mixed feelings about this one. I realize the impulse is that anyone associated with Fraud Graham should be swept out, but that impulse was part of what happened post-Wannstedt and is not the smartest plan for continuity and trying to get beyond perpetually rebuilding.

From a coaching standpoint and continuity, it is always good to try and keep at least one or two coaches on the staff. Whether it is for recruiting reasons or to simply bridge the transition it is a common practice. Also, the defense noticeably improved throughout the season, so from a plain coaching standpoint it wouldn’t be a negative.

As it stands, Patterson was only one of maybe a couple coaches that could have been retained without redundancy. Todd Dodge is unlikely to be retained as QB coach. Not when the head coach can handle that position and does not adhere strictly to the same style. I feel bad for Dodge. He got lured here out of his comfort zone, and just got screwed by Fraud Graham like others.

O-Line coach Spencer Leftwich did a great job when you look at the talent and injuries suffered on the line — and an extra bonus for making Turley into an effective center in such short time, but the new OC is an O-line coach, so it seems unlikely. D-line coach Paul Randolph reportedly has told Pitt that he will be leaving after the BBVA Bowl to join Fraud Graham.

Randall McCray, OLB Coach and special teams coordinator, may actually remain. He has worked with Chryst at Wisconsin. Albeit, McCray worked as a position coach and recruiting coordinator there from 2006-09.

The other thing is that Patterson didn’t flee with Fraud Graham at the get go. This despite their very close ties. Patterson looked very shaken after Graham left and spoke that day. Maybe I’m just reading too much into it, but I don’t think he saw Graham’s actions coming and I doubt he was in agreement with them. If Patterson isn’t retained, I hope he gets an opportunity somewhere else away from Graham.

Patterson abruptly lost his father in November. His father was a longtime high school coach — who actually demonstrated the loyalty and devotion to family Fraud Graham preached. Those are events that have a big impact on your outlook on things.

emel, I hope you’re right. I feel the same way.

Comment by pk 12.30.11 @ 12:04 am

Oh…… you heard it here first !

Comment by Emel 12.30.11 @ 12:04 am

indeed I have

Comment by pk 12.30.11 @ 12:15 am

indeed I have

Comment by pk 12.30.11 @ 12:15 am

I’m watching the Baylor Washington game. Baylor has scored 60 points midway through the 4th. I wish Pitts basketball team could score 60 points

Comment by pk 12.30.11 @ 12:21 am

Wbb – you commented with this:

Tomsula: Asst Head Coach / D-line coach
Huxtable: Def Run Coordinator / Inside LB Coach
Paterson: Def Pass Coordinator / Outside LB Coach

But that looks funny to me. I don’t think I’ve ever heard having two DC’s splitting responsibilities into DC-Run & DC-Pass.

It sounds very awkward to me.

At least on offense you have the luxury to be in control of the next pay by virtue of playcalling so I can see co-OCs. But defense is so reactive what would the coordinators do during the games.

Unless you mean strictly during camps and practices?

Comment by Reed 12.30.11 @ 7:23 am

Why would Tomsula come over? He’s a fast rising star in the pro ranks and could probably get a DC position within a year. The Cowboys will be needing one. Also, the Huxtable guy supposedly is not coming over but it would be a coup for Pitt if he did. I’m more interested in the recruiters coming in. Need a good one from Ohio and Florida. I also get concerned when I hear that Chryst will call his own plays. Jason Garrett tries to do that down here and it takes away from his game management and ability to focus on other aspects of the game. Tough job to do.

Comment by TX Panther 12.30.11 @ 7:44 am

Lets get real even if Tomsula came to PITT what good is it to us this year?
He could not come soon enough the 49ers are in the pro play offs. recruting will be over when he gets hear.

Comment by FRANKCAN 12.30.11 @ 8:57 am

Reed, you omitted from my post … “No problemo”

My post was every as bit as tongue-in-cheek as Chas’ endorsement of Tomsula for HC

Comment by wbb 12.30.11 @ 9:13 am

Let’s see how Wisky does in the bowl. Being a head coach also means less time in the film room, more time with PR, etc…
I am guessing that Chryst has other people lined up but because he and they are presently occupied and totally unlike Fraud Graham, they are putting horses before carts.
One last thing on ole “God Bless” Graham….when talking about players leaving one school for another after they have completed 4 years like Z. Brown did, he was totally opposed. His reasoning? He felt that once you started at a school, you should stay there! LMAO. He will get crushed at recruiting in the PAC 12.

Comment by SFPitt 12.30.11 @ 9:30 am

Nice post Emel == new year == new attitude == pray PC brings back the NASTY to PITT FOOTBALL!!! Truth & Virtue == nice.

Comment by DC33 12.30.11 @ 9:35 am

[…] to provide a brief counterpoint to the story I posted yesterday about Wisconsin Linebackers Coach Dave Huxtable coming to Pitt when Paul Chryst takes the reigns. […]

Could someone comment as to why Gilbert has so few minutes? Adams comes in next year & has been projected as a lottery pick in 2013. would think JD would want Gilbert to gain experience so he is not in the same quandary in the future. would like to see a combination of jj & patterson in the backcourt w/zanna & gilbert up front & rotate naz & moore @ the 3 spot. maybe more uptempo & run ==

Comment by DC33 12.30.11 @ 11:02 am

Gilbert needs to get stronger. He gets pushed out of position too much.

Comment by jw in Raleigh 12.30.11 @ 11:42 am

frankcan, sf doesn’t need their d line coach for the playoffs.

Comment by pk 12.30.11 @ 1:29 pm

How can you evaluate Gilbert until he gets significant playing time? I too have seen him get pushed out of position a couple times, but no more than Dante and Zanna.

I have also seen him disrupt on D. He alters shots and will block shots way more than Dante. He is bigger than both, and will get stronger. He’s 6’11”. He needs to play more. If we were getting production at the 5 it would be different. we are not. Let Sleepy come off the bench. He seems to play with more fire when challenged.

still like Emel’s idea of a zone with Gilbert in the middle. ND killed us underneath.

Comment by Bossdaws 12.30.11 @ 1:34 pm

Wbb – I did miss that “no problemo”. Maybe I took it seriously because I’d love for PITT to have those three guys on staff – and because Graham split to coordinator duties on offense this year.

Comment by Reed 12.31.11 @ 7:20 am


“still like Emel’s idea of a zone with Gilbert in the middle. ND killed us underneath.”…

So Gilbert can play middle linebacker?

Comment by Reed 12.31.11 @ 7:21 am

[…] be the next defensive coordinator. And as good a resume, and a positive that it is to get Huxtable, I liked the job Patterson did. The defense improved noticeably from the start of the season to the […]

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