Dec 18, 2009, 5:40 PM EDT
Reports surfaced in the last few days that Tony Alford was the only coach returning for the Fighting Irish, leading many to believe that graduate assistant Bryant Young was also gone from the program.
Now word comes from senior associate athletics director John Heisler that this might not be the case.
From the athletic department’s Daily Dish:
announced today. Alford will continue his duties with Notre Dame’s
running backs. “I got to know Tony during our days in the Big East when
he was at Louisville
and I was at Cincinnati,” Kelly said. “He is a tremendous teacher and a
great recruiter and I’m thrilled to keep him on the coaching staff. He
has consistently developed his players at every school he has coached
and his passion for the game is infectious. I look forward to working
closely with him.” Alford, who just completed his first season on the
Irish sidelines, made significant strides with the Notre Dame running
backs. After the two worst rushing seasons in school history in 2007
(75.25 ypg) and 2008 (109.69 ypg), the Irish improved its rushing
output by nearly 17 percent to 128.2 yards per game on the ground this
season. In fact, the Irish churned out 135.6 per game on called running
plays in 2009. Notre Dame also saw a major upgrade in rushing yards per
carry. The Irish backfield averaged just 3.9 yards per carry in both
2007 and 2008, but improved by over 20 percent in 2009 to 4.7 yards per
rush average. Chad Klunder, personnel Tim McDonnell and director of football development Dave Peloquin will all stay on staff. Defensive graduate assistant Bryant Young
has been offered to remain in his position on the new coaching staff.
The rest of the Irish coaching staff will be determined and announced
at a later date. will remain on staff, Fighting Irish head football coach
You’ve got to think this is a no-brainer for Kelly to keep Young on as a graduate assistant. While he might not be ready for the full-time commitment of coaching the defensive line, Young brings a ton to the table as a former Pro Bowler, a Notre Dame alum, and a guy who must have a lot of technical know-how after playing in the trenches in the NFL for a long time.
From the wording of the release, it sounds like Kelly might be waiting on Young to make a decision.