Mountaineers' abysmal defense prompts coaching changes
Share with others:
West Virginia's defense endured a season that suggested changes might be coming.
A Post-Gazette source confirmed Tuesday that Keith Patterson was promoted to defensive coordinator from co-defensive coordinator, essentially swapping roles and titles with Joe DeForest.
DeForest, who was the defensive coordinator, will be the co-defensive coordinator.
The switch comes just days after cornerbacks coach Daron Roberts was let go by coach Dana Holgorsen.
Patterson, who was Pitt's defensive coordinator under Todd Graham, also worked with the linebackers this season.
The change is not altogether surprising.
DeForest and Patterson switched positions logistically on the field at the suggestion by Holgorsen Nov. 3 against TCU. Patterson moved to the sideline from the booth, and DeForest went upstairs where he said calling the game was easier because of how calm it was. Some improvement followed.
But the Mountaineers' defense was shredded for more than 400 yards eight times, and ultimately gave up an average of 469.6 yards per game.
The team's pass defense was ranked last in Division I at No. 120 most of the season and heads into the Pinstripe Bowl Dec. 29 against Syracuse ranked No. 119.
DeForest was a special teams coach at Oklahoma State before Holgorsen hired him. Patterson was Pitt's interim head coach last year after Graham bolted for Arizona State.
After that, Patterson accepted a job at Arkansas State as defensive coordinator, but he resigned from that position to take the co-defensive coordinator's job at West Virginia.
First Published December 12, 2012 12:00 am