Rating every new coaching staff in college football

Sonny Cumbie was praised by many in the industry when Louisiana Tech hired him as their head coach. The goodwill continued in the Texas Tech bowling game with Cumbie as interim coach. The Red Raiders may have struggled offensively last season, but Cumbie is still a highly respected name in coaching circles and he previously had TCU among the nation’s top offenses in the mid-2010s. he built in Ruston is certainly interesting with a strong flavor of Stephen F. Austin staffers. The Bulldogs, however, have to win and win big. Time is running out and the risks must pay off.

The head coach: Sonny Cumbie (Texas Tech, offensive coordinator)

New team: Jack Brown, co-coordinator offensive/receivers (Texas Tech, quality control); Nathan Young, offensive line (Stephen F. Austin, offensive line); Scott Parr, offensive/tight ends co-coordinator (Navarro College, head coach); Scott Power, defensive coordinator/linebackers (Stephen F. Austin, defensive coordinator); JaMarkus McFarland, defensive line (Stephen F. Austin, defensive line); Paul Turn, securities (analyst); Dan Sharp, Assistant Head Coach/Special Teams (TCU, Special Teams); Marcus Walker, cornerback (Stephen F. Austin, defensive back)

Retentions: Antoine Camp, outside linebackers (defensive line); Brock Hays, running backs; Paul Turn, securities (analyst)


Virginia was not given much notice when Bronco Mendenhall resigned in December and the search for coaching was a bit complicated as candidates came and went on campus. Hiring Tony Elliot was about as good as one could hope for, but the star power of his coaching staff is lacking. Elliott is the buoy of this staff.

The head coach: Tony Elliot (Clemson, offensive coordinator)

New team: Kitchings, offensive coordinator (Atlanta Falcons, offensive coordinator); Chris Slade, defensive ends (Pace Academy High, head coach); Keith Gather, running backs (Army, receivers); Kevin Downing, defensive tackles (Navy, defensive line); John Rudzinsky, defensive coordinator/defensive backs (Air Force, defensive coordinator); Curome Cox, defensive backs (Air Force, defensive backs); Taylor Lamb, quarterbacks (Gardner Webb, quarterbacks)

Retentions: Marked Hagans, receptors; Clint Sintim, linebackers; Garett Tujague, offensive line


Jeff Tedford is back for a second stint as head coach of Fresno State after health reasons forced him to step down in 2019. He has since hired coaches from across the country, including a rising star Pat McCann, and he kept a few centerpieces from Kalen DeBoer’s staff while promoting Kirby Moore — Kellen’s younger brother — from receivers coach to coordinator.

The staff are incredibly experienced, including a pair of veteran coaches who weren’t on-field assistants in 2021, but these stalwarts haven’t had much success in their recent gigs. Tedford’s biggest win was compelling Jake Haener to exit the transfer portal and return to Fresno State as the Bulldogs’ star quarterback.

The head coach: Jeff Tedford

New team: Tim Skipper, linebackers (Central Michigan, linebackers); Kevin Coyle, defensive coordinator (LSU, defensive analyst); John Baxter, Special Teams Coordinator; jethro franklin, defensive line (Missouri, defensive line); Pat McCann, receivers (Eastern Washington, receivers); James Montgomery, running backs (Cal Poly, running backs); Sage Tuitele, offensive line (Army, offensive line)

Retentions: Kirby Moore, offensive coordinator (receivers); Roman Sapolu, tight ends (offensive line); JD Williams, defensive backs (cornerbacks)

23. TEMPLE: C-

Stan DraytonHis extensive resume and close ties to the Temple administration helped him land his first big job. His team includes former Power Five assistants, including DJ Elliot, who hasn’t coordinated a defense in two years. Jules Montinar could prove to be the rising star of this staff after his stay in Florida was cut short due to the layoff of Dan Mullen.

The head coach: Stan Drayton (Texas, running backs)

New team: Chris Wiesehan, offensive line (Georgia Tech, tight ends); Preston Brown, running backs (Temple, personal player manager); Adam Schier, tight ends/special teams (Rutgers, special teams coordinator); Danny Langsdorf, offensive coordinator/quarterback (Colorado, quarterback); Jules Montinar, defensive backs (Florida, cornerbacks); DJ Eliot, defensive coordinator; Ola Adams, defensive/safety co-coordinator (Villanova, defensive/secondary coordinator); Anthony Smith, defensive line (Colorado State, defensive line); Chris Woods, linebackers (Kansas, analyst)

Retention: Thad Ward, receptors

24. TCU: D+

TCU wanted Sonny Dykes and Sonny Dykes wanted TCU, so the decision to oust Gary Patterson was done without much preparation and was probably messy. Dykes led rival SMU to 33 wins, the best coaching record since the infamous Pony Express death sentence, but industry sources say he struggled to fill his staff at TCU.

The head coach: Sonny Dykes (SMU, head coach)

New team: Ra’Shaad Samples, running backs (SMU, running backs); Joe Gillespie, defensive coordinator/linebackers (Tulsa, defensive coordinator); Garrett Riley, offensive coordinator/quarterback (SMU, offensive coordinator); AJ Ricker, Offensive/Offensive Line Co-Coordinator (EMS, Offensive Line); Carlton Buckels, cornerbacks (Tulsa, cornerbacks); Marc Tommerdahl, Special Teams Coordinator (Texas Tech, Special Teams Coordinator); Chidera Uzo-Diribe, defensive line (Kansas, outside linebackers)

Retentions: Paul Gonzales, safeties; Malcolm Kelly, external receptors; Doug Meacham, inside receivers

25. NEVADA: D+

Sometimes renting makes sense and Ken Wilson is just that for Nevada. Wilson had plenty of support and was the overwhelming favorite to land the gig when Jay Norvel left for Colorado State. Wilson has filled his team with three former analysts and two former quality control coaches, so time will tell if that works out on the field.

The head coach: Ken Wilson (Oregon, defensive co-coordinator)

New team: Nate Costa, quarterbacks (Oregon, analyst); Kwame Agyeman, defensive/safety co-coordinator (Oregon, analyst); Jalen Ortiz, cornerbacks (Wyoming, graduate assistant); Mike Bethea, defensive coordinator (uOttawa, defensive coordinator); Joe Bolden, special teams coordinator/outside linebackers (Ohio State, analyst); Louie Addazio, offensive line (Colorado State, offensive line); Derek Sage, offensive/tight ends coordinator (UCLA, tight ends); CJ Ah You, defensive line (USC, quality control); Anthony Arceneax, receivers (UC Davis, receivers)

Retention: Vai Taua, running backs

26. UMASS: D+

The head coach: Don Brown (Arizona, defensive coordinator)

New team: Steve Casula, offensive coordinator/quarterback (Michigan, analyst); Keith Dudzinski, defensive coordinator (Arizona, linebackers); Grind Valdamar, defensive line (Springfield Central High); Darrell Perkins, defensive backs (UConn, cornerbacks); Jeff Moore, tight ends/recruiting coordinator (Loomis-Chaffee High); Damien Mincey, running backs (Albany, special teams coordinator/running backs); Mike McCray, outside linebackers (Michigan, analyst); Ryan Partridge, receivers (Arizona, support staff); Ben Albert, special teams/defensive line (Duke, defensive co-coordinator/defensive line)

Retention: Alex Miller, offensive line


The head coach: jerry kills (TCU, helper)

New team: Tim Beck, offensive coordinator (TCU, analyst); Chuke Ndulue, defensive line (Southern Illinois, defensive line); Cliff Odom, cornerback (Eastern Illinois, cornerback); Nate Dreiling, defensive coordinator (Southeast Missouri State, inside linebackers); Andrew Mitchell, offensive line (TCU, analyst); Tyler Wright, tight ends (TCU, graduate assistant); Tony Sanchez, receivers (TCU, analyst); Ghaali Muhammad-Lankford, running backs (Illinois State, receivers); Bobby McMillen, inside linebackers (TCU, analyst)

28. AKRON 😀

The head coach: Joe Moorhead (Oregon, offensive coordinator)

New team: Nick Toth, defensive coordinator/linebackers (Oregon, analyst); Tre Bell, cornerbacks (Florida State, graduate assistant); Winston DeLattiboudère, defensive line (Oregon, graduate assistant); Allen Tucker, Special Teams (Mississippi State, Quality Control); Billy Fesler, quarterbacks (Ohio State, graduate assistant); Neal Renna, safeties (Eastern Illinois, special teams/safeties); Joel Rodriguez, offensive line (FIU, offensive line); Reno Ferri, tight ends; Terry Richardson, running backs; David Gilberton, receivers (Oregon, analyst)

HAWAII: to be determined

The head coach: Timmy Chang (Colorado State, receivers)