Though the news broke almost a month ago, Notre Dame made official the addition of former Buffalo associate head coach Ernest Jones to the football program. As expected, Jones won’t be working on the field with the Irish, but has taken the official title of director of player development and engagement.
Here’s more from the official release on what Jones will be tasked with:
Jones will be responsible for helping develop the Fighting Irish football players in three of the five core areas Kelly uses to develop complete student-athletes: intellectual development, social development and spiritual development (the coaching staff is charged with skill development and the strength and conditioning staff is responsible for physical development).
Jones will act as a liaison between the football players and coaching staff plus serve as primary contact between both the student welfare and development office and academic services for student-athletes department.
Jones is a graduate of Alcorn State and spent a season as their head coach in 2008. He worked under Kelly from 2005-07, coaching at both Cincinnati and Central Michigan. He rejoined Kelly in 2009 as the director of player services at Cincinnati, working in both academic services and community outreach.
Jones left Jeff Quinn’s Buffalo program, where he coordinated the recruiting efforts of the Bulls to rejoin Kelly. He has coached cornerbacks and running backs as a position coach under Kelly and will likely take a role on the field when a job opens in the future.