Tedford Assembles All-Star Staff the Red Wave Will Love
Jeff Tedford announced his coaching staff on Thursday morning, and it includes several familiar names: Kevin Coyle, John Baxter, Tim Skipper, Jethro Franklin.
In addition, J.D. Williams is sticking with Fresno State, this time as defensive backs/defensive pass game coordinator.
It’s an all-star lineup. One that can stack up with any in the Mountain West, and most Power Five schools, as well.
Now in his second stint as Fresno State football head coach, Tedford had to rebuild his staff after former coach Kalen DeBoer took many assistants with him to the University of Washington.
“This staff has extensive experience and history here at Fresno State, and across the country at the highest level of college football and the NFL,” said Tedford.
“They appreciate the pride and tradition of Bulldog football, the Red Wave, and the Valley. Not only are they excellent coaches and teachers of the game, but they are quality people who will care about our student-athletes on and off the field, and a group who will continue to develop our team into a championship-level program.”
Meet the Coordinators
Kirby Moore is staying with the Bulldogs, now as the offensive coordinator. Moore coached the wide receivers the past five seasons, but was promoted to OC for the New Mexico Bowl. The Bulldogs racked up 467 yards in their 31-24 victory over UTEP. He was initially hired by Tedford in the first go-around in 2017.
Kevin Coyle will serve as the defensive coordinator, in his second stint at Fresno State. Coyle was the Bulldogs’ DC under Pat Hill from 1997-2000. He most recently coached at LSU (2018-21) and has had long stints coaching in the NFL with Cincinnati and Miami.
John Baxter returns as the special teams coordinator and associate head coach. Baxter held the role for the Bulldogs from 1997-2009 during the Pat Hill era. He left for USC in 2010. Baxter is also known for his “Academic Gameplan” program to help students improve academically.
Moore, Coyle, and Baxter replace Ryan Grubb, William Inge, and Eric Schmidt, respectively. All three coaches left with DeBoer.
The Rest of the Staff
Tedford will keep J.D. Williams (defensive backs/defensive pass game coordinator) and Roman Sapolu (tight ends), who along with Moore are the only three holdovers and will have new responsibilities.
New hires include Pat McCann (wide receivers/pass game coordinator), who held a similar job with Eastern Washington. He is the only newbie with no prior ties to Tedford.
James Montgomery (running backs/recruiting coordinator) joins after a similar role at Cal Poly. Montgomery played under Tedford at Cal in 2006.
Jethro Franklin (defensive line/defensive run game coordinator) joins from Missouri. This is his third time around with Fresno State, first as a player (1986-87), then a coach (1991-98, along with Tedford).
Tim Skipper (linebackers/assistant head coach) will also be in his third Bulldogs go around, first as a player (1997-2000) then as a coach (2006-11). He joins Fresno State from Central Michigan.
A tenth coach will be announced soon.
Related Story: Fresno State Beats UTEP in New Mexico Bowl