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Gary Andersen Working On Defensive Hires

Gary Andersen is surveying the scene regarding the field of candidates for his defensive assistant openings.
Gary Andersen is surveying the scene regarding the field of candidates for his defensive assistant openings.

In the wake of the hiring by BYU of Oregon State assistant coaches Kalani Sitake and Ilaisa Tuiaki, Beaver fans have been getting nervous as the holidays go by without any replacements being named. And we haven't had much to say at BTD, because there hasn't yet been much to say.

It doesn't mean nothing is happening though, and head coach Gary Andersen said as much, indicating he has been working on the issue, and hopes to make announcements over the weekend (doubtless interrupting the watching of important football games!) of hires, whom he hopes to have on scene in Corvallis for a staff meeting Monday morning.

The listing for the positions of Defensive Coordinator and Linebackers coach closed in Monday (being a public employer, such things have to be posted for all to apply), and we know Kevin Clune, currently the Defensive Coordinator at Utah State has interviewed. Clune's Aggie D was 14th in the country in total defense this year.

For those anguishing over the pace of the process, it's important to keep in mind that its Bowl Week, with 17 bowl games today through Saturday, this after a half dozen others earlier this week. (It's understandable how some Beaver fans aren't that familiar with, given Oregon State has only been in 1 post Christmas bowl game since the Sun Bowl Trip!)

That's a LOT of assistants who have their hands full just at the moment. There's bound to have already been some conversations with folks who doubtless said "Thanks for the call Gary, and I'd love to talk further about it. Can I call you back as soon as we get done here?" And some informal ones that went much further.

Wisconsin's DC Dave Aranda and LB coach Inoke Breckterfield are doubtless on that list. So to are names that would come as a surprise to most. Aranda, whose' D was 15th in total D this year, is also in the conversation for the USC DC job, and how Badgers do tonight against the Trojans just might figure into the situation.

If you have GA's cell phone number and get a busy signal when you call the next few days, it's probably because some of those return calls are being made.

And even those that don't lead directly to a deal with the caller, will doubtless contribute to the final decisions Andersen makes.

So enjoy the bowl games, and the relatively successful run the Pac-12 is on (5-1 with 4 games to go), and stay tuned!