When new assistant Tim Duffie's hiring was announced Monday, the broader “defensive backs coach” title suggested there could be some internal shifting on the Oklahoma State staff.
And there has been, with Cowboy coach Mike Gundy announcing Wednesday that Duffie will coach safeties and Van Malone will switch to coaching cornerbacks.
Malone has plenty of experience with that position, coaching cornerbacks at Western Michigan in 2004 and at Texas A&M from 2006-07. He also coached the entire secondary at North Texas (2005) and Tulsa (2010-11).
New OSU defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said Duffie's name had been considered in previous assistant coaching searches and was immediately brought up again when former cornerbacks coach Jason Jones left for the same position at Mississippi last week. Duffie's previous coaching stops include Wake Forest, Colorado State and UTEP.
“Schematically, he was really, really good,” Spencer said. “When I interviewed him and got him on the board, he knew all the issues and he knew the answers, so that was comforting.
“But more than that, just his recruiting expertise in Texas … he's had that area as long as he's been coaching, so that was a big factor also.”
NO BIG CHANGES UNDER NEW OC YURCICH
New offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich assured last week that there wouldn't be any dramatic changes to OSU's Air Raid spread offense. He even went a step further, saying he hadn't yet implemented any of his own wrinkles.
That's how the Cowboy quarterbacks have viewed it, too, with Clint Chelf noting that they've even helped teach the system to Yurcich. That continuity, along with Yurcich's personality, has made for a smooth transition to a new coordinator and quarterbacks coach.
“For all of us, it's pretty much the same thing,” Chelf said. “We try helping him out as much as we can.
“Every day, we find something new about him. He's a very passionate guy. I think that's one thing you can learn just by talking to him is he's very passionate about football and about offense. That's obviously going to rub off on us as quarterbacks, since we're around him every day. I'm excited to continue working with him.”