College football position coaches to watch entering the 2021 season

College football is a sport that changes from year to year. The coaching staffs are always evolving, and this season will be no different. This article will highlight the top coaches to watch for the 2021 college football season.

The new nfl head coaches 2021 are the college football position coaches to watch entering the 2021 season. This is due to many coaches being fired or resigning in the offseason.

Under football coach Jim Harbaugh, Michigan’s failure to really break through is multifaceted and, to be fair, affects every member of the team.

However, the emphasis has been on, and will continue to be on, one position group: quarterbacks. In Year 7 of Harbaugh’s tenure, many anticipated the position to be flourishing.

Harbaugh is a seasoned quarterbacks coach as well as one of Michigan’s most accomplished quarterbacks (1986 Big Ten MVP, established FBS passing efficiency record, Michigan lifetime passing record). At Stanford, he worked with Andrew Luck, and with the San Francisco 49ers, he worked with Colin Kaepernick. Harbaugh’s return to Michigan, a school with a more illustrious quarterback tradition than archrival Ohio State, promised success for the Wolverines’ quarterbacks.

Rather, Michigan’s quarterbacks have underperformed, with an adjusted QBR rating of 29th since 2015. Iowa transfer Jake Rudock, Harbaugh’s first quarterback, has proven to be the best thus far.

Harbaugh begins a crucial season with his quarterbacks still needing to get back on track. He isn’t, however, working alone. Harbaugh recruited Matt Weiss from the Baltimore Ravens to teach Michigan’s quarterbacks in 2021 as part of a broader staff makeover.

Position coaches do not get the same level of attention as head coaches or coordinators, yet they are critical to a team’s success. I looked at the most crucial position coach hiring for each group two summers ago. This isn’t strictly a “best coaches” list, but rather one that looks at individuals that fill critical roles at critical times.

In 2021, here’s a deeper look at Weiss and other key new position coaches in college football.


Michigan’s Matt Weiss is the quarterback. Previously, he was the Baltimore Ravens’ running backs coach.

Weiss offers a varied and comprehensive approach to Michigan’s quarterback room despite spending nearly his entire coaching career with two teams: the Ravens and Stanford. He has worked with every major position group other than tight ends between Baltimore and Stanford, including periods as the main coach for the Ravens’ linebackers (2014), cornerbacks (2015), and running backs (2016). (2019-2020).

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Weiss worked with Baltimore quarterbacks under James Urban in 2016 and 2017, but he wanted to go into the Michigan job with a better knowledge of the position.

“You hear about all these guys in the NFL who go to biomechanic throwing specialists, NFL players investing their own money and time,” Weiss told ESPN recently. “That’s something I’ve always believed we should equip our own quarterbacks with, so I’ve spent a lot of time working with those guys, trying to understand all the biomechanics of passing. Swing instructors are present in various sports, such as tennis and golf. When a quarterback in the NFL earns $30 million, the entire notion of ‘that’s not something you coach’ doesn’t seem fair to me.”

Weiss reunited with former Ravens quarterback John Beck after accepting the Michigan position, and Beck has subsequently become a top quarterback trainer. Tom House, a veteran arm specialist for baseball and football athletes, is part of Beck’s California-based team.

Weiss’ aim is to assist Michigan’s quarterbacks not only read the field like professionals, but also step in when mechanical problems arise.

“One thing you’ll see all across the nation, and even in the NFL, is when a player misses a pass because it’s too low or too high, and the coach yells, ‘Hey, get the ball up.’ That isn’t really coaching, is it? “Weiss said. “You want to be able to explain why the ball was low and assist him in correcting the problem. So it’s not truly a distinct entity. It should be a component of your position’s coaching.”

To Michigan’s quarterbacks, Weiss is stressing efficiency and decision-making. Michigan quarterbacks have a 108-49 touchdown-to-interception ratio under Harbaugh. However, the Wolverines haven’t been very dynamic, which seems to be a necessity for teams hoping to win championships and make the College Football Playoff, as they’ve tied for 54th in completions of 20 yards or longer (246) since 2015.

“The quarterback’s duty, according to Tom Brady, is to save the game from being lost. That is where the focus is placed “Weiss explained.

Cade McNamara, who threw for five touchdowns and no interceptions in limited action last season, leads Weiss’ team. McNamara has received high acclaim for his offseason leadership and growth from both Harbaugh and Weiss. Freshman J.J. McCarthy, ESPN’s fifth-ranked quarterback and the No. 25 overall prospect in the 2021 class, and transfer Alan Bowman, who started 16 games and surpassed 5,000 career passing yards at Texas Tech but must adjust to a new system at U-M, are among the difficulties the junior faces.

Weiss, 38, believes his room has a “wonderful variety of ability” and is pleased with how the players have reacted so far. Weiss is relying on Jim Harbaugh’s experience to help Michigan’s quarterbacks improve after working with Ravens head coach John Harbaugh for more than a decade.

Weiss, a Connecticut native who was a walk-on punter at Vanderbilt, said, “He has everything I lack in terms of experience as a player.” “I wasn’t drafted in the first round. I didn’t play in the NFL for 14 years. He has that viewpoint and can assist me with it. He has a terrific perspective on quarterback performance and is just interested in winning. He’s a problem solver, someone who wants to find a way to accomplish something or improve something.”


LSU’s offensive line is led by Brad Davis. Previously, he was the offensive line coach for the Arkansas Razorbacks.

Davis is on a four-game SEC road trip, with LSU being his fourth visit since 2017. He coached Florida’s offensive line for a season before going to Missouri for the 2018 and 2019 seasons before joining Sam Pittman at Arkansas last autumn. Davis, a Baton Rouge native, was a member of Oklahoma’s national championship team in 2000 and has taught offensive line at various levels and in various locations.

Brad Davis has coached at Florida, Missouri, Arkansas, and currently LSU since 2017. Chris Parent is a well-known figure in the

After dismissing James Cregg in June, LSU needed an offensive line coach quickly and had to spend a lot of money (a three-year deal worth $830,000 per year) to get Davis on board. Before tackle Dare Rosenthal moved to Kentucky, the Tigers were expected to return all five starting linemen. With a rookie quarterback, Max Johnson, coming into the obvious starting position following Myles Brennan’s arm injury, Davis’ work with Cameron Wire, who is slated to replace Rosenthal, and holdovers like guard Ed Ingram and center Liam Shanahan will be particularly crucial.


North Carolina’s Larry Porter is a running back. Previously, he worked at Auburn as a tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator.

The bad news is that North Carolina will have to replace a record-breaking running back duo in Michael Carter and Javonte Williams, who rushed for 2,385 yards and 28 touchdowns on 313 attempts last season.

The good news is that Porter is acquainted with the program and position, having coached UNC’s running backs from 2014 to 2016 under Larry Fedora. Porter is a former head coach at Memphis who has worked with running backs at six different schools in four different major conferences.

North Carolina hopes to compete for the Coastal Division championship, particularly with quarterback Sam Howell back, and can’t afford a major drop-off in the rushing backfield. The Tar Heels needed a veteran to manage the position after losing Robert Gillespie to Alabama, and they found one in Porter, who will work alongside Tennessee transfer Ty Chandler and others.


Chad Bumphis, Utah Wide Receivers Previous job: Austin Peay Wide Receivers Coach (briefly WRs at Central Michigan)

Utah is creating excitement again two years after winning the Pac-12 South, owing to a powerful defense and fresh offensive confidence. The Baylor transfer quarterback Charlie Brewer excelled throughout spring practice, and Utah’s passing game will need to improve come fall.

Bumphis, a graduate assistant at Utah in 2018, steps into a significant position with a squad that has seen a lot of change but keeps veteran Britain Covey, the team’s leading receiver with 264 yards and three touchdown receptions, and adds Oklahoma transfer Theo Howard, a former starter at UCLA (1,359 yards, 119 catches, nine touchdowns).

Bumphis attended Mississippi State and was a member of numerous NFL practice teams before rising rapidly through the ranks of coaching. He coached receivers at Austin Peay for the previous two seasons and was temporarily employed at Central Michigan before accepting the Utah position.


Penn State’s Ty Howle is a tight end. Previously, he worked as an offensive analyst for Penn State.

Tyler Bowen, one of the team’s best assistants in recent years, joined Urban Meyer with the Jacksonville Jaguars, thus coach James Franklin went internal to replace him. Howle’s elevation to tight ends coach, a key position in Franklin’s program, is a significant step forward for the former Nittany Lions offensive lineman.

Before joining PSU as an analyst in 2020, Howle spent four years at Western Illinois. At NC State, he also worked with Matt Canada, the former Big Ten offensive coordinator who is currently with the Pittsburgh Steelers. However, this is by far his most important function.

Penn State lost star tight end Pat Freiermuth, but likes how Brenton Strange and Theo Johnson are shaping up for 2021, and 6-foot-6 redshirt freshman Tyler Warren gives quarterback Sean Clifford another huge target. With the move, Franklin emphasized consistency, particularly with the arrival of the team’s third offensive coordinator in as many years (Mike Yurcich).


Texas’ Bo Davis leads the defensive line. Previously, he worked as a defensive line coach with the Detroit Lions.

Davis is perhaps the most intriguing coach on this list, and he is a significant addition to Steve Sarkisian’s Texas coaching team. Davis is most known in the SEC for his two stints as an assistant coach at Alabama, where he mentored A’Shawn Robinson, Jonathan Allen, and others until quitting in 2016 and incurring a two-year show-cause punishment for NCAA infractions. Before joining the Lions, he coached at UTSA during the show-cause in 2017.

Davis has coached great lineman all across the country, including All-Americans Terrence Cody and Marcell Dareus during his first stint at Alabama, and he returns to Texas after serving as the Longhorns’ defensive tackles coach from 2011 to 2013.

He inherits a team that has lost its most reliable edge player in end Joseph Ossai (five sacks, 16 tackles for loss in 2020) and a strong inside presence in Ta’Quon Graham. Davis’ experience will be crucial to the unit’s overall success under new coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski.


Kansas’ Chris Simpson is a linebacker. Buffalo Bills linebackers coach/co-defensive coordinator

Kansas isn’t going to be a fast fix, and the new coaching staff, led by Lance Leipold, who was hired after spring practice ended, will need time to get things back on track in Lawrence. Simpson is one of the coaches hired in by Leipold from Buffalo, where he helped develop All-MAC picks Khalil Hodge, James Patterson, and Kadofi Wright. In 2020, his outstanding performance earned him the position of co-coordinator.

Although sophomore Taiwan Berryhill, juniors Gavin Potter and Nick Channel, senior Nate Betts, and others offer a good foundation, he takes over a squad with major concerns. Simpson, like the rest of Leipold’s staff, came up through the ranks, and Kansas is his first chance with a Power 5 school. However, if he can start duplicating his Buffalo player development with the Jayhawks, the defense at KU should be able to stabilize sooner rather than later.


Miami’s Ishmael Aristide is an outside linebacker. Previously, he worked as a defensive analyst at Texas A&M University.

After the 2020 season, Hurricanes head coach Manny Diaz made numerous adjustments on defense, including regaining playcalling responsibilities. Aristide may not be as well-known as defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson, a former South Carolina coordinator, or defensive line coach Jess Simpson, who is starting his second tenure with Miami.

The 30-year-old Aristide, on the other hand, is the most intriguing addition to the team. He was a quick climber who played on both sides of the ball, worked as a consultant for Deloitte outside of football, and then rose through the ranks of coaching at Auburn, Ole Miss, and Texas A&M, where he worked under talented coordinators like Mike Elko.

After getting gashed by North Carolina and others in 2020, he takes over an outside linebacker/striker group that must improve against the run. Gilbert Frierson, a talented sophomore striker who had nine tackles for loss and 53 total tackles last season, is one of the players Aristide will teach.


Notre Dame’s Chris O’Leary is a strong defender. Prior to this, he worked as a defensive graduate assistant at Notre Dame.

This year’s list focuses on up-and-comers, and O’Leary fits the bill after transitioning from a graduate assistant position to managing the safeties under new coach Marcus Freeman. Head coach Brian Kelly could have gone with far more experienced alternatives, but instead chose O’Leary, a former Notre Dame defensive coordinator Clark Lea’s favorite who might have followed Lea to Vanderbilt.

O’Leary, on the other hand, gets his big break before he is 30. He takes over a team that has a superstar in Kyle Hamilton, but he needs clear answers beside and behind him.

O’Leary is an Indiana native who worked as a coach at Georgia State and Florida Tech before coming to Notre Dame in 2018. Kelly has been more willing to give new coaches a chance in recent years, with offensive coordinator Tommy Rees, Freeman, and Lea being notable examples. If O’Leary can keep Notre Dame’s defense on track, he might be in line for a coordinator job somewhere in the nation shortly.


Arizona’s DeWayne Walker is a cornerback. Previously, he was the defensive backs coach for the Cleveland Browns (2019)

Under coordinator Don Brown, new Arizona head coach Jedd Fisch put together an outstanding first staff, which included many veterans on defense. Fisch made the right decision to keep Chuck Cecil, a former Arizona standout safety who worked under Kevin Sumlin and has a great relationship to the institution and the players.

Walker, a former New Mexico State coach and UCLA defensive coordinator, was also brought in to work with Cecil in the secondary, particularly with the cornerbacks. Walker, 60, has coached defensive backs for five NFL clubs as well as at Cal and USC. Under Karl Dorrell and Rick Neuheisel, he served three seasons as UCLA’s coordinator.

With sophomore Christian Roland-Wallace and Notre Dame transfer Isaiah Rutherford, he takes over a group that may be one of Arizona’s strengths after not coaching in 2020. Brown’s pressing system places a premium on cornerbacks, emphasizing Walker’s importance for the rest of the season.


Special teams include: Texas’s Jeff Banks Alabama’s previous job title was special teams coordinator/tight ends coach.

Problems with the special teams emerged throughout coach Tom Herman’s tenure, sparking criticism from a former standout punter last year. Banks may wind up being the most important of Sarkisian’s personnel appointments.

In luring Banks away from Nick Saban and Alabama, Texas offered him the first $1 million special teams coordinator in college football. Alabama’s kicking game improved under Banks, as the Crimson Tide did not miss a field goal last season, allowed no blocked kicks or punts, and ranked ninth nationally in punt returns. Banks is also well-versed in Texas, having served as Texas A&M’s special teams coordinator from 2013 to 2017.

He provides Sarkisian with long-term worth as a recruiter, but he can also have an instant effect on a team in desperate need of help. Banks inherits experienced kicker Cameron Dicker and punter Ryan Bujcevski, as well as D’Shawn Jamison, a potential star returner. Texas has to improve its kicking game, and Banks has the credentials to do it.

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