The Coaching Wire: Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Coaching Wire: Saturday, March 2, 2013

Bronco Mendenhall has reorganized the BYU staff. Paul Tidwell (left) will continue as inside linebackers coach. (Photo: Deseret News)

Bronco Mendenhall has reorganized the BYU staff. Veteran assistant Paul Tidwell (left) will continue as inside linebackers coach. (Photo: Deseret News)

[dropcap]B[/dropcap]YU’s Bronco Mendenhall has reorganized his coaching staff.

Offensive coordinator Robert Anae has been given the assistant head coach title, while secondary coach Nick Howell will be defensive coordinator and outside linebackers coach Kelly Poppinga will also serve as special teams coordinator.

“Robert, Nick and Kelly are pillars of our coaching staff,” Mendenhall said. “…I have great expectations regarding the contributions of each member of our staff as we prepare our team for the 2013 season.”

Mendenhall will continue to call defensive plays and work with Howell in coordinating the defense. Howell has served as special teams coordinator the past two seasons. He will continue to coach the secondary.

Poppinga is entering his fifth year at BYU, including third full season as the team’s outside linebackers coach.

Anae, who also works with the offensive line, oversees a new offensive staff at BYU that consists of Mark Atuaia (running backs), Jason Beck (quarterbacks), Guy Holliday (receivers) and Garett Tujague (offensive line).

In addition to Mendenhall, Howell and Poppinga, the defensive staff includes coaching veterans Steve Kaufusi (defensive line) and Paul Tidwell (inside linebackers).

BYU will start spring practices on Monday, March 4 and end on on Friday, April 5. The spring scrimmage will be played on on Saturday, March 30.

Former BYU graduate assistant Kelly Bills named OC at Willamette

Willamette (D-III, Ore.) head coach Glen Fowles has named Kelly Bills offensive coordinator. Bills spent the past five seasons at BYU, most recently as an offensive graduate assistant. Bills played running back for the Cougars in 2006-07 after starting as a quarterback on Gary Anderson’s 2003-04 teams at Southern Utah.

McKissic-Luke named South Dakota State running backs coach

South Dakota State head coach John Stiegelmeier tabbed Nic McKissic-Luke as the Jackrabbits’ running backs coach. McKissic-Luke, who began his playing career at Alabama before transferring to Alabama A&M, spent the past five seasons as running backs and slot receivers coach at Benedict College (D-II program, Columbia, S.C.).

Ricky Santos named New Hampshire quarterbacks coach

Former New Hampshire quarterback Ricky Santos has been named the Wildcats’ wide receivers coach. Santos, who is one of four former New Hampshire players to have his jersey retired at the school, won the Walter Payton Award as the most outstanding offensive player in FCS football in 2006. He’s spent the past five years playing professional football, beginning as an undrafted free agent with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2008. He spent the 2009-12 seasons in the CFL with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Montreal Alouettes and Toronto Argonauts.

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