Kalani Simpson


Kalani Simpson

Sunday, April 6, 2003

UH well coordinated
without a DC

WANTED: Defensive coordinator, college football coach.

Experience in football coaching required, college or pro experience preferred.

The defensive coordinator will be responsible for carrying out a defensive philosophy and scheme already established and in place.

Must work as the counterpart to a high-powered passing offensive system, which can result in frequent quick scores and multiple three-and-outs per game. The defense will often have to turn around and get right back out there. The defense will typically be on the field for a large number of plays, sometimes approaching 100 snaps in a game.

Must not badmouth the run-and-shoot offense.

The defensive coordinator must not do too much coordinating.

Will ascend to these duties sometime after the conclusion of spring practice.

Salary negotiable. Excellent winning program (two bowl appearances in last four seasons). Statewide fan following. Every game televised. World's most beautiful living conditions.

Contact June Jones, University of Hawaii.

IT TAKES A special guy to take on this challenge, defensive coordinator at UH.

Or, maybe, it doesn't take one at all.

The more I think about it, the more I like what Jones is doing this spring.

Defensive coordinator? We don't need no stinking defensive coordinator!

The funny thing is, it seems to work.

Jones knows what he wants. He sets it up: This is the defense. This is what they do. His assistants know what he wants. They run it.

Of course, it would get a little more complicated when the season starts, with the week-to-week game planning. But for now it's surprisingly refreshing in its old-school simplicity. When did these coordinators all become celebrity chefs? (And isn't that what once led crazy uncle Buddy Ryan to famously take a wild swing at Jones' friend Kevin Gilbride?)

No, this is like the old days, like high school. And Jones, the former offensive specialist, is now simply a football coach, overseeing everything.

I like the sound of that.

You can see it in practice. UH's defensive assistants are working well together, they haven't missed a beat under this arrangement. They know the plan. They know the guys. They know the plays. They're all good coaches.

And maybe this could work.

Think about it. What outsider would take this job? For one thing, it's a rare defensive coach that relishes the challenge of having his back against the wall backing up the run-and-shoot (and here, all the criticism that comes with it). Then, Jones has already set up the defense, and this time, there will be no tinkering. To top it off, for a new guy, the timing isn't what you'd like, coming in cold for fall camp.

It would take the perfect fit, and maybe Jones has one.

But maybe this already is one. Coordinators? Forget the cult of the coordinator. I'm happy to see an old-fashioned football coach.

Kalani Simpson can be reached at

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