|"There's the door, Tim."|
Gold and Black and H&R are reporting that Greg Hudson, recently of Florida State's coaching staff, has been tapped by Coach Hazell to be Purdue's new defensive coordinator:
Hudson, the Seminoles' linebackers coach and assistant head coach the past three seasons, was part of a Florida State defensive staff that oversaw a unit that ranked second nationally this season in total defense, allowing just 253.8 yards per game and an national-low 3.89 yards per play, according to NCAA statistics.
Obviously, it's early to be making excited statements, but regardless of how this works out, you can only judge things on what you know at the moment you're assessing them. And put in a nutshell, hiring a coach who was a key cog in a unit that was one of the best in the nation on a team that won 12 games is a ginormous step up from taking a guy from the CFL. (Happy trails, Tim Tibesar. I hope that the month you spent polishing your resume instead of preparing your defense bears fruit for you.)
Hudson is now the fifth coaching defection from Jimbo Fisher's staff, which is just amazing. I guess if you want to advance your coaching career, go work for Jimbo.
The older readers among you might remember that Hudson, who is 45 years old, played linebacker for Notre Dame in the '80s. We'll try not to hold that against you, Greg. Hudson then coached at UConn, Cinci, Minnesota, East Carolina and finally Florida State for three seasons. At Minny, Hudson coached under legendary Glen Mason and while we like to joke about Mason, in the three seasons Hudson was there the Gophers went 25-13 and 3-0 in bowls, including Minnesota's first 10-win season since 1905.
Most of Hudson's positions have been as a LB coach, but he did serve as Eastern Carolina's DC from 2005 to 2009 under Skip Holtz. Those ECU teams went to four bowls, won nine games twice and went 38-27 over that span.
So Coach Hazell has a guy who is still relatively young, has been a successful position coach and coordinator on the D-1 level (as well as "assistant head coach," which can mean something and nothing depending on where that title is bestowed upon you) and is coming off a stint with one of the best defenses (statistically) in college football.
Given the facts we know right now, this feels like a very good hire. Having a guy who might be eager to continue to prove himself as he climbs towards a head coaching job is usually a good thing.
|This Jafar isn't evil.|
Additional coaching news from G&B includes the fact that Hazell's DC at Kent State, Jon Heacock (who followed Tressel as HC of Youngstown State in 2001) will likely be joining him as a position coach for the Boilermakers. Which is good, since as you can tell from the photo earlier in this post, Heacock will fill Gary Nord's role as "stern older white guy."
Also, G&B reports that Virginia Tech receivers coach Kevin Sherman and Kent State RB coach Jafar Williams are likely to come on board in West Lafayette.
None of this is officially confirmed, but if state-run media is talking about it, it's about as unofficially official as it gets.
No word yet on hat brim requirements.