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Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Football: Pelini officially names his assistant coaches; Jared Allen the only holdover from previous staff

Jared Allen, a quarterbacks coach last season, will now coach tight ends. Photo by FAU Media Relations.

With a new coach, new staff and new philosophies, Owls football will undergo many changes this season.

But will it be for the better? After formally announcing his staff today, FAU head coach Carl Pelini hopes so.

“I was very methodical and meticulous about how I went about hiring these guys,” Pelini said. “I have a very specific vision for the program so I didn’t just want to go out and hire. In the end I think I put a really good staff together. I’m excited about it.”

Jared Allen (tight ends coach),Brian Wright (offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach), Marvin Sanders (defensive coordinator/associate head coach), Luke Meadows(offensive line coach), Kerry Dixon (running backs coach), Ross Watson (defensive backs coach), Javon Dewitt (linebackers coach), Brett Dierson (defensive line coach) and Jeff Sims (wide receivers coach/recruiting coordinator) round out Pelini’s staff.

Allen is the lone member of Howard Schnellenberger’s staff to be retained.

“I spent a lot of time with this staff that was here, and when Jared came into my meeting with me he was very prepared, especially in terms of recruiting. He knew the three-county (Palm Beach, Broward and Dade) area,” Pelini said of his reasoning behind keeping Allen on the staff. “I got a real feel for Jared being very proud of his alma mater and wanting to see it succeed whether he was going to be here or not.”

Former Montana State offensive coordinator Brian Wright, the man tasked with reviving a woeful Owls attack that scored 12.9 points per game last season, 119th out of the 120 D-1 teams, is up for the challenge. He believes he is prepared, despite having no D-1 coaching experience.

“I think football is football,” Wright said. “We had fast guys at Montana State and Youngstown State. We played Penn State, Utah and Washington State, and Ohio State when we were at those schools. We played at a very high level and when you play at a very high level in the FCS and make it to the playoffs and so forth I think that it’s good football at that level.”

Wright plans to scrap the slow-plodding, ineffective style used last season at FAU. Instead he will attempt to tire defenses out with a no-huddle offense.

“We won’t be in the huddle,” Wright said. “We’ll be playing a fast up-tempo offense. You’re going to see multiple formations. Multiple tempos that all will equate to a balanced offense.”

Jared Allen is the only member of Howard Schnellenberger's staff to be kept by new head coach Carl Pelini. Photo by FAU Media Relations.

Last season’s starting quarterback Graham Wilbert is not guaranteed to keep his position, as Wright said while he has not looked at much film of Wilbert or the other quarterbacks on the roster, the role is a critical one for the team.

“Quarterback is obviously the most important component of an offense,” Wright said. “This offense and any offense revolves around that guy. That guy needs to be a special player, so we will always be recruiting that position.”

Wright’s flexibility with the offense, is a trait that is important for Pelini as well in his first season as a coach.

“He’s been very successful in adapting to suit the talents that he’s had,” Pelini said. “Not try to always force a square peg into a round hole. A lot of guys are unwilling to do that. They believe in their system. They’re not willing to adapt. You have to be able to adapt.”

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    DaveJan 22, 2012 at 1:26 am

    I’m sorry to say it but Graham Wilbert is not starting quarterback material… maaaybe at an FCS school… not at FAU…