BREAKING: Mike Stoops hired to become new FAU defensive coordinator

Stoops will replace Jim Leavitt to become the next defensive coordinator for the football program.

Stoops spent the last two years as an analyst for the University of Alabama before joining FAU. Photo courtesy of the University of Alabama Athletics.

Stoops spent the last two years as an analyst for the University of Alabama before joining FAU. Photo courtesy of the University of Alabama Athletics.

Richard Pereira, Sports Editor

Mike Stoops has been hired to become the next defensive coordinator for the FAU football program Thursday afternoon. 

This comes after Jim Leavitt was confirmed to be leaving to go to SMU on Wednesday, ending his lone year with the Owls.

After spending the last two years as an analyst for the University of Alabama, Stoops will be inheriting a defense that ranked 10th out of 127 teams nationally last season.

Head coach Willie Taggart celebrated the announcement of the hiring by describing it as a home run for the team.

Mike brings tremendous experience to the defensive side of the ball,” Taggart said in a press release from FAU Athletics. “His pedigree, two national championships, countless players to the NFL and his wealth of knowledge speaks for itself.”

Stoops has been coaching for 35 years, which included an eight-year stint as the head coach for the University of Arizona and 15 years as a defensive coordinator. He was a part of two national championships in 2000 with the University of Oklahoma and 2020 with Alabama.

As a former head coach and defensive coordinator at ‘Power 5’ programs, he knows the importance of building a defensive staff that can teach and adjust,” Taggart said. “The strength of our defense is their on-field communication and the band of brother culture. I welcome Mike to the B.O.B.”

Richard Pereira is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @Rich26Pereira.