This page is for the 2014 coaching searches. If you want details on the 2015 coaching searches, CLICK HERE.
Updated 2/18/2014 5:23 p.m.
UPDATE: Los Angeles Times is reporting Mike Tuiasosopo as the new coaching hire. We’ll have a full update on him and our opinions today (Wednesday).
With the promotion of Jeff Ulbrich to Defensive Coordinator, Adrian Klemm to Associate Head Coach, and Demetrice Martin to Assistant Head Coach, the coaching leadership seems firmed up.
It also means less flexibility in filling to the coaching position left over on defense. Top coaches like Ken Norton Jr. will want to be more than just a college “Linebacker Coach.” Or a college “Special Teams Coach.” They will want a position that brings prestige, money and helps their coaching career trajectory.
Maybe Mora can figure out a way to have a whole bunch of Assistant Head Coaches on staff, but we kind of doubt it. He can get creative and move coaches around though. McClure has shown an interest in coaching different positions and is one of the most diverse coaches on the staff, having coached tight ends, offensive line, defensive line, special teams, as well as being run game coordinator, recruiting coordinator, and an assistant head coach in his coaching career. Maybe there are opportunities for him to move to a different position, freeing up a defensive line coaching position. We only mention this because there appear to be quite a few really top notch D-line coaches around right now. McClure is doing a fine job – we are just making the point that if the staffing assignments are flexible, it may allow Mora to bring in the “best coach available” somewhat regardless of position.
So for now we will use this page to look at potential candidates to fill the position.
Probably Linebacker Coach
Palomar College (LB Coach)
Central Washington University (LB Coach)
University of Washington (player)
|This Graduate Assistant helped Ulbrich with linebackers this past season. White has some limited coaching experience and may have the inside track since he is already in the program. Pretty good linebacker in college at the University of Washington where he had ties to Rick Neuheisel. Unknown what his recruiting skill is. We would prefer someone with more experience, since Ulbrich will also be new to his position.
If Mora is consistent, we don’t think White will be promoted to linebacker coach. If you remember, after Steve Broussard was let go as running back coach, everyone (but us) said Deshaun Foster would be promoted. Instead, Mora hired an experienced coach in Kennedy Polamalu (patting ourselves on the back here – we were the first to break the news that Polamalu had been contacted).
Probably Linebacker Coach
|2009-2013 SDSU (CB/recruiting coordinator)
2008 New Mexico (LB)
2007 UCLA (GA)
|This UCLA football alum has been getting some attention lately. Considered a good recruiter and rising coach, White may be a possibility.|
Probably Special Teams Coach
2009–2010 Miami, Ohio (HC)
2005–2008 Notre Dame (OC/RB)
2003–2004 Texas (RB/ST)
1995–2002 LSU (RB/ST)
1993–1994 Ball State (WR/RB/ST)
1991–1992 Ohio (OLB/ST)
1989–1990 Army (DB/DE/ST)
1988 Minnesota (GA)
|This is an intriguing name. In his second season as head coach at Miami of Ohio, he took his team from 1-11 to 8-4, including winning the the 2010 MAC Championship Game, and being named the 2010 Mid-American Conference football coach of the year. He was considered one of the hottest coaching names around at the time and was considered both a great coach and a great recruiter. He was rumored for just about every head coaching opening. On December 16, 2010, Haywood was offered and accepted the head coaching position at the University of Pittsburgh. A rising star in every way. And then it all fell apart…
On December 31, 2010, Haywood was arrested on domestic violence charges stemming from a custody battle. He was released on a $1,000 bond, and Pittsburgh then fired him before he coached a single game. In February 2012, the charges were dismissed after Haywood completed pre-trial diversion requirements, counseling, and public service.
Haywood’s rise, career, and reputation were destroyed. While we do not condone domestic violence, neither do we believe his particular charges justifies never giving him a chance to work again either. The court actions indicate he is not considered a menace, bail was only $1,000 for a man who was making hundreds of thousands a year, and the charges were eventually dismissed.
Currently he is interviewing for position coaching positions to re-build his career. This would be an opportunity for UCLA to bring in a highly qualified coach with great experience not only as a head coach but also in working at and recruiting for top programs like Notre Dame, Texas, and LSU. He has extensive experience as a Special Teams coach. This would be an opportunity for UCLA to bring in an over-qualified coach at a Special Teams Coach salary.
We don’t know if UCLA, or Bruin fans would be able to accept him with his past.
UPDATE 2/10: Haywood has been named a finalist for LSU’s Special Teams Coach. LSU may be floating the name out there to see if there is any vocal opposition. As far as coaching goes, this is a home run hire for whichever team gets him as a position coach.
Probably some combination of Defensive Line/Assistant Head Coach
2013 Wisconsin (DL)
2011-2012 Utah (DL)
2010 Utah State (DL)
2005-2009 Weber State (DL)
2001-2004 Baldwin High School, Maui HI (HC)
|Kauha’aha’a goes back to our philosophy of getting the best coach available. His only experience is coaching the defensive line, so that is where he would have to coach at UCLA. That means a move for Angus McClure. Fortunately, McClure is a well rounded coach who has coached multiple positions, including Special Teams. Mora would have to get creative in how he would handle McClure’s new role, but it could be done.
As for Kauha’aha’a, he is a rising star in coaching circles. Considered one of the premier recruiters in the country, he has also coached elite college players like Star Lotulelei. Would he come to UCLA? Well, he is Hawai’ian raised and currently experiencing a Wisconsin winter. Think about that. We think he would be open to at least listening. With Lotulelei and Polamalu both on staff, UCLA would lock down recruiting, especially among the Polynesian players.
Probably Linebacker Coach
|2013 USC (LB)
2011-2013 Indiana (DC)
2008-2010 Nebraska (LB)
2007 LSU (Intern)
2005-2006 LSU (GA)
2003-2004 Oklahoma (GA)
2002 Manhattan (KS) HS (AC)
1999-2001 Omaha Skutt HS (AC)
|UPDATE: Georgia just hired Ekeler as their Linebacker Coach.
CBS Sports has recently linked Ekeler with a position at UCLA, most likely linebacker coach. However, he has been a DC at a Big-10 program so we can’t completely rule out the UCLA DC job. Ekeler is well regarded as a linebacker coach and as a recruiter, having turned the USC linebacking corp around in his lone season there. Sark did not retain him so he is looking around for the right job. Someone will hire him, and soon.
Probably Linebacker Coach
2013–present Arkansas (LB)
2012 TCU (LB)
2007-2010 Miami (HC)
2006 Miami (DC/LB)
2001–2005 Miami (DC)
2000 Miami Dolphins (LB)
1998–1999 Miami Dolphins (asst)
1993–1997 Miami (LB)
1992 Miami (DL)
1991 Miami (GA)
|Another interesting name. Shannon certainly has the resume, having been a defensive line coach, a head coach at a major program, a defensive coordinator, and a college and NFL linebacker coach. Played linebacker (briefly) in the NFL and is considered an outstanding recruiter.
There were a few disciplinary issues while he was head coach at Miami, and his record there is unremarkable. After he was fired from Miami, his career path took a dive, and he is trying to get it back on track.
Would he come to UCLA as “just” the Linebacker Coach? We think there is a possibility. He is the linebacker coach at Arkansas, which just hired a new defensive coordinator, and it wasn’t him. Sounds like the writing is on the wall as far as his career goes there. On the other hand, UCLA is definitely starting to be considered a coaching hotbed, where coaches get recognized, promoted and make some real money at the same time. This is a place where you can rejuvenate your coaching career.
Other names we are hearing:
DeWayne Walker – Please stop talking about Walker and let Mora hire his own guys. Both Dorrell and Neuheisel were forced into hiring coordinators they didn’t want and we know how that turned out.
Ken Norton Jr – When we first heard his name, we thought, no way. However, we have since heard that there had been contact between the UCLA and Norton camps. However, snce the new promotions we don’t know if there is still an opportunity here. We generally think this boat has sailed but we would have been in favor of bringing Norton back into the family. Think about it, Norton is the kind of coach that Mora likes. Three Super Bowl rings and three Pro Bowls. Fiery coach with deep UCLA roots. Solid recruiter. He still has a home in So Cal and the UCLA Hall of Famer might be tempted to come home.
Greg Robinson – Been around a long time but this is certainly not the sexy hire we all want. Looks like he will be the new defensive coordinator for San Jose State.
P.S. while we love that fans like our ORIGINAL stuff enough to share it, we would really appreciate it if we are given credit. This applies in particular to one certain pay site (you know who you are and fans are paying you to come up with your own ideas. We work hard to write our content so either create your own, or give us credit. Both are preferable to stealing our stuff and implying it came from your anonymous, super secret, high level, supposedly insider, deep throat “sources“).