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A few links, a few Holtz staff notes ..

17

January

First, a few links: Here's the basketball game story from USF's big win against Rutgers, from correspondent Kerry Klecic. And columnist Gary Shelton got a look inside Skip Holtz's still-empty office at USF.

Two interesting developments in the last hour that relate to Holtz's tough decisions in putting together his staff of nine full-time assistants. First, a tweet from Yahoo's Tom Dienhart just said that "I am told the next East Carolina coach will have to retain four of Skip Holtz's assistants."

That's certainly good news for Jim Leavitt's former assistants, who would be in much stronger position to keep their old jobs. Hard to say which of Holtz's assistants would stay in Greenville, but some have longstanding ECU ties -- co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Steve Shankweiler has been at ECU for 15 seasons, spanning four different head coaches, and running backs coach Junior Smith is an ECU alum and the school's all-time leading rusher.

Holtz already lost defensive coordinator Greg Hudson to Florida State, and his defensive tackles coach, Thomas "Rock" Roggeman, spent most of this season on medical leave of absence as he battles non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. So it's possible Holtz could keep half or more of Leavitt's staff, unless there are coaches from outside the two schools that he'd like to bring to Tampa.

The second intriguing wrinkle comes from Miami, where the Miami Herald reports that Hurricanes defensive line coach Clint Hurtt has interviewed for a spot on Charlie Strong's new staff at Louisville -- which is building quite a Florida presence for recruiting the state. If Hurtt leaves, that would open up a spot that seems perfect for Bulls defensive line coach Kevin Patrick, who was an All-American at Miami but has now enjoyed two coaching stints on the USF staff. Would Holtz try to keep Patrick on his staff, perhaps splitting the defensive line duties with ECU assistant Vernon Hargreaves, who spent eight years as a Miami assistant? We'll get many of these answers in the next 48 hours or so as Holtz builds his staff.

Another name to remember for the offensive staff is graduate assistant Steve Bird, who coached the Bulls' tight ends this past season. Bird has 22 years as a position coach, including stops at Pittsburgh and West Virginia. His main background is as a receivers coach, where Holtz must also consider USF's Phil McGeoghan, who has gotten public endorsements from rising seniors A.J. Love and Dontavia Bogan this week, and ECU's Donnie Kirkpatrick, who was Holtz's recruiting coordinator.

[Last modified: Thursday, May 27, 2010 7:57pm]

    

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