Gibbs Talks Coaching Staff: Discussing the Year of Readiness

Texas Tech defensive coordinator David Gibbs talks about his coaching staff, including confirming the hiring of Brett Dewhurst and Matt Brock. Plus, we look at Big Ten commissioner talking about the “year of readiness” and what that means.

Gibbs’ Coaching Staff. LAJ’s Don Williams spoke with Texas Tech defensive coordinator David Gibbs to discuss how his coaching staff will fit together, the thought being that yes, there is not a true defensive line coach, but the assistants are going to “coach the snot” out of the players.

“I’m a professional DB coach, so I’ve got to stay in the back end to correct the biggest problem,” Gibbs said. “But Trey played offense. Trey didn’t even play defense, so does it really matter what position he coaches if he’s just coaching football? No.

“Zac’s the same way. Zac played DB and has coached DBs his whole life, but I know this: He’s been around football his whole life.”

Gibbs says Smith’s moving to defensive line “is an easy adjustment for him.” He’s coached edge rushers. And he presumably soaked up some defensive line know-how during his several-year association with Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan, whose background is with defensive linemen.

I fall in line like a lot of you do (and Gibbs), which is that I think that coaching is coaching for the most part and maybe our bars are pretty low . . . coach swarming to the ball and wrapping up and you’ll have a happy fanbase. I really do believe that this is going to be the focus of the coaching staff. Oh sure, alignment and those sorts of things are important, but getting back to basics are maybe the most important things at this point.

Dewhurst and Brock Confirmed. LAJ’s Don Williams does officially confirm that Brett Dewhurst and Matt Brock are both expected to be defensive quality-control assistants. For those of you that followed this saga, we had a person on Viva The Matadors that was detailing the hiring process of David Gibbs and he also said that Dewhurst had been hired as an assistant. We were all confused because if Dewhurst had been hired as an assistant then that mean one of the defensive coaches would be leaving the team (there are only so many assistants that a college program can have).

With this article, we do confirm that Dewhurst is a defensive quality control assistant.

“(Defensive line coach Mike Smith) has Matt Brock in there with him, who was the linebacker coach here last year,” Gibbs said, “so we have two really good coaches at every level. And then I brought Dewhurst with me in the back end, so I’ve got three guys still, really, in the back end.”

New Campus Photos. Our friend, TTU Red at Totally Texas Tech has some new campus photos of the snow that fell in Lubbock yesterday.

Critical Spring. ESPN’s Brandon Chatmon writes that it is a critical spring for a handful of Big 12 players, including QB Davis Webb:

Davis Webb, QB, Texas Tech: A strong finish to the 2014 season by Patrick Mahomes has resulted in Webb being overlooked in many ways, but a healthy Webb was productive during his first two seasons in Kliff Kingsbury’s program. The job is open heading into spring and Webb can make sure the quarterback battle in Lubbock is one of the most interesting aspects of Big 12 football in the spring.

I think this is generally okay, but Webb may not be healthy, so I don’t know how much he will be able to help himself. I hope he is healthy and and hope Webb and Patrick Mahomes push each other in every practice.

Year of Readiness. This is a bit winding, so I hope I get this right. Earlier this week, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany released a statement about the “year of readiness” with the emphasis being the “importance of keeping education central to the mission of college athletics.” Couple with this, we have had discussions about making freshmen ineligible and that seems to be something that simply won’t happen (according to experts). The question that’s been discussed is what is Delany’s end-game with this discussion of education first and Sporting News’ Matt Hayes had this:

The argument no longer is about paying players; that’s happening no matter what fancy name you call it. It’s not about student athletes securing name and likeness marketability; that’s happening, too.

By trying to recapture the stated higher education goal (you know, what college is really all about), universities are banking they can at least devalue the “minor leagues” narrative — and maybe reach a percentage of student athletes they couldn’t before.

The Big Ten and Pac-12 have started the idea of academic big tents (see: “multiple ideas”), and soon enough the other three Power 5 conferences will tout their academic initiatives that, strangely enough, will be nearly identical to those of the Big Ten and Pac-12.

This seems to coincide with FoxSports’ Stewart Mandel, who had this quote from Delany about wanting to get back to academics for student-athletes:

“We’re sort of on the clock, is the way a lot of us look at it,” Delany said in a recent interview with the Big Ten Network. “We’ve got a lot of litigation challenging intercollegiate athletics, we’ve got congressional interest and we have public skepticism. What we want to do is drive the message that education is first, athletics is second, even though these are the two most popular sports commercially.”

If the end-game here isn’t clear, it is that the commissioners have essentially agreed to change the narrative from one being where academics don’t matter at all, or very much, to one where academics is valued because of . . . lawsuits.

Miscellaneous. TCU promotes safeties coach Chad Glasgow, and former Texas Tech defensive coordinator, to co-defensive coordinator along with DeMontie Cross . . . as of yesterday, Oklahoma State and Mike Gundy were without three offensive assistant coaches as Jemal Singleton left to coach at Arkansas. Lucky for Mike Gundy, he did hire an offensive line coach in Greg Adkins from the Buffalo Bills, so now Gundy just needs two more offensive coaches . . .



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