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Putting together new staffs and recruiting at Texas, Louisville, Vanderbilt and Penn State

What hath the coaching carousel wrought?

Andy Lyons

Charlie Strong is now entrenched at Texas and Bobby Petrino at Louisville. Charlie hit the ground running by offering a couple of Louisville commitments. Will Bobby do the same at WKU? Bill O'Brien has left Penn St. and James Franklin may leave Vanderbilt for the Nittany Lions. When change occurs, it always has an effect. It takes a while for order to be restored. Until then, chaos and turmoil rule.

Will Petrino try to flip Kentucky's Mr. Football, Nacarius Fant? At 5'11", Fant is smallish for a wide receiver and his speed (4.7) is questionable for the ACC. Strong did not make and offer while at Louisville.

Of course, Card fans are most upset with Charlie, claiming he is nothing more than a mercenary and a dirty rotten scoundrel. Suddenly, Bobby has become a Saint Bobby of the Coach of the Total Person and Family while Jurch has become The Archangel of Forgiveness and Second Chances. World Without End. Amen.

Let's look at...


Mack Brown's staff:

Assistant HC/Defensive Backs - Duane Akina

Assistant HC/Offensive Line - Stacy Searels

Co-OC/Quarterbacks - Major Applewhite

Co-OC/Wide Receivers - Darrell Wyatt

DC/ Linebackers -Greg Robinson

Recruiting Coordinator/ Tight Ends - Bruce Chambers

Defensive Tackles - Bo Davis

Defensive Ends - Oscar Giles

Running Backs - Larry Potter

Strength & Conditioning - Bennie Wylie

Charlie Strong's staff (to date):

DC - Vance Bedford

Defensive Line - Open

Secondary - Open

Linebackers - Brian Jean-Mary

OC - Open

Offensive Line - Open

Wide Receivers - Open

Tight Ends - Open

Strength & Conditioning - Pat Moorer


Charlie Strong's staff

OC/Quarterbacks - Shaun Watson

DC - Vance Bedford

Offensive Line - Dave Borbely

Running Backs/Special Teams - Kenny Carter

Wide Receviers - Ron Dugans

Defensive Line/Recruiting Coordinator - Clint Hurtt

Linebackers - Brian Jean-Mary

Tight Ends - Sherrone Moore

Secondary - Tommy Restivo

Strength & Conditioning - Pat Moorer

Bobby Petrino's staff (to date):

OC - Garrick McGee

DC - Kevin Steele

Defensive Line - Clint Hurtt (at least for 2014 Season)

Defensive Backs - Terrell Buckley (not confirmed)


Moving on to recruiting and how the coaching changes have made an impact. Apparently, the hiring of Petrino has had more of an impact at Louisville than Strong's hiring at Texas.


The firing of Mack Brown and the hiring of Charlie Strong hasn't affected Texas. After all, Texas is considered a major power, especially in Texas. I've reported that roughly 92% of Texas recruits are from Texas. It should be expected, however, that Strong will expand the recruiting base to Florida where he has strong (pardon the pun) ties.

Louisville picked up a commitment from Texas running back Daniel Gresham on June 24th after he de-committed from Texas. The question now is whether or not Strong wishes to flip him back to Texas.

DT Chris Nelson committed to Louisville on Aug. 7th and picked up an offer from Texas on January 8th. He took an official visit to Louisville on January 17th and has one scheduled to Texas on January 24th. The 247 Sports Crystal Ball has a 100% projection that he will flip.

Texas currently ranks #13 in the Rivals recruiting team rankings, just behind Kentucky. They currently have 21 commitments with an average star rating of 3.24. I don't know how many commitments they can take.


Strong's departure caused some Florida players to de-commit.  Isaiah Ford committed to Louisville on May 11th and he de-committed on January 5th. He's predicted to sign with Virginia Tech. Kavaris Harkless committed to Louisville last April 16th and de-committed on January 5th. He enrolled at Florida on January 8th. George Rushing committed to Louisville on May 10th and de-committed on January 8th. He's entertaining offers from Wisconsin, LSU and TCU. Others are rumored to be waivering, but that's just rumors.

There is no evidence to support any claims that Petrino's hire has had any effect one way or another on recruiting. The bad publicity Louisville is getting outside of Louisville could have an effect. It is just too early to tell. With Strong's departure Louisville has dropped to #30 in the Rivals team rankings. The Cards have 21 commitments and an average star rating of 3.05.

Moving on to Vanderbilt and Penn St.

Bill O'Brien left the Littany Lions after two years for the NFL.  After the Sandusky scandal, he may have saved the Penn St. program. You can read about his highlights here and also about his "lowlights". Penn St. is about to announce the hiring of James Franklin away from Vanderbilt according to most media outlets.

Should Franklin accept the Penn St. position as expected, you must wonder how long it will take Vanderbilt to find a replacement and how long will it take for each school to build their respective new coaching staffs. The other burning question is how will it affect the 2014 recruiting class(es). Penn St. currently ranks #24 with an average Rivals star rating of 3.28 while Vandy ranks # 26 with an average star rating of 3.3. Penn St. has 19 commitments with one early enrollment and Vanderbilt has 20 commitments. Kentucky hopes to flip Llyod Tubman from Louisville Seneca.