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Defensive Coaching Vacancies

It has been more than a month since we learned that DC Carl Torbush was leaving MSU to join Turner Gill's staff at Kansas. In that time, the only 2 names that have really surfaced as possible replacements are Willie Martinez and Manny Diaz. A third was added today when Tom Dienhart tweeted that Rick Minter would be interviewing for the job. Here is a run-down of the names out there so far and their resumes.

Willie Martinez was recently let go from Mark Richt's staff at Georgia. He had been on the Bulldog staff since 2001, first as secondary coach, then moving up to DC in 2005. Here are some highlights from his bio on the Georgia athletics website:


  • During his seven years at UGA, he has been part of a staff that has led Georgia to 72 victories, two championships, three SEC Eastern Division titles, five bowl victories, and five top ten finishes in the final national polls including No. 2 in 2007.
  • Martinez' 2006 Georgia defense ranked 8th nationally in total defense, 5th in pass defense and 1st in the SEC in third down efficiency.
  • His 2005 defense finished 8th in the country in scoring defense (16.4 ppg).
  • In 2000, Central Michigan led the nation in pass defense (149.7 yds/g) and senior safety Brian Leigeb led the Mid-American Conference (MAC) in tackles and was 3rd nationally with 13.36 per game.
  • Martinez was a defensive back on Miami's 1983 national championship team and played in the 1985 Fiesta Bowl and the 1984 Orange Bowl. He also was a graduate assistant at Miami from 1985-86, coaching in the Sugar and Fiesta bowls.
Manny Diaz is finishing his 4th year as DC at Middle Tennessee.
  • Diaz started his career at Florida State, working as an assistant to Mickey Andrews during the 1998 and 1999 seasons
  • He spent 5 years on staff at NC State working with linebackers, then safeties and specialteams.
  • In his first year at MTSU, his defense broke the school record for sacks (36) and tackles for loss (96)
  • Also led the Sun Belt Conference in rushing defense and sacks.
  • His dad is the Mayor of Miami Florida
Rick Minter is the newest name on the list. He is currently the interim head coach at Marshall where he has also served as DC for the past 2 years. He is definitely the more experienced of the 3 candidates. He started his coaching career in 1977 and has worked at Notre Dame, South Carolina, and Cincinatti. He was the Bearcats head coach for 10 seasons with a record of 53-63-1.


News also broke today that defensive line coach David Turner has left Mullen's staff to join Joker Phillips staff at Kentucky.