Holtz gets his man: Cosh to run USF defense
Chris Cosh, who faced many of the nation's top offenses in helping Kansas State to a 10-win season, agreed Wednesday night to join Skip Holtz's staff as USF's defensive coordinator.
Cosh, 52, spent the last three years at Kansas State, and he'll take over a veteran defense expected to improve on disappointing finishes in a 5-7 record this season. He coached with Holtz for five seasons at South Carolina, and will take over for Mark Snyder, who left to take the same job on Kevin Sumlin's new staff at Texas A&M.
Cosh (rhymes with gosh) was the only candidate Holtz brought in for an interview, attending the team's postseason banquet this past weekend and meeting with USF players and assistant coaches. Kansas State made a strong push to keep him, but Holtz got word around 10 p.m. Wednesday that Cosh had accepted his offer. Financial details weren't immediately available, but he'll be the highest-paid assistant on Holtz's staff, much as Snyder was last season.
Cosh's defense made considerable strides in 2011, improving from 119th nationally in run defense to 39th. Kansas State made a goal-line stop against Miami quarterback Jacory Harris to preserve a September win against the Hurricanes, and faced six of the nation's top 13 offenses in total yards, winning four of those games. He'll have it much easier in the Big East, where USF faced just one opposing offense ranked in the top 60 nationally in total offense.
It's the third time Kansas State has lost a defensive coordinator to a football job in Tampa -- Jim Leavitt was co-coordinator when he left to become USF's first head coach in 1995, and Raheem Morris left the Wildcats in 2006 to become the Bucs' defensive backs coach, later serving as Tampa Bay's head coach.