Temple is bringing in another defensive coordinator to fill its head coaching position.
The Owls are set to hire Manny Diaz to replace Geoff Collins, a source told Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel. Collins left Temple after two seasons on the job at Georgia Tech. Before landing the Temple job, Collins was the defensive coordinator at Florida and Mississippi State, among others.
Diaz has been the defensive coordinator at Miami for the past three seasons. The Hurricanes enter bowl play at No. 2 in the country in total defense, allowing just 268.3 yards per game.
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Before Mark Richt brought him to Miami, Diaz had stints as defensive coordinator at Mississippi State, Louisiana Tech, Texas and Middle Tennessee. He also was a defensive assistant at NC State after his time as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, Florida State.
This is the first head-coaching job for the 44-year-old Diaz. Other names who were reportedly in contention for the position included two other defensive coordinators: Don Brown of Michigan and Mike Elko of Texas A&M.
Temple was one of the worst programs in the country for decades, but things have really turned around over the last 10 years. As a result, Temple has been a stepping stone for coaches. The program’s previous four head coaches all left for bigger jobs: Al Golden to Miami, Steve Addazio to Boston College, Matt Rhule to Baylor and Collins to Georgia Tech.
The Owls have been one of the top teams in the American Athletic Conference the past few years, including back-to-back 10-win seasons in 2015 and 2016. Temple was the AAC runner-up in 2015 and won the conference championship the following season, defeating Navy in the title game. However, after that win, Rhule left Philadelphia for the Baylor job.
This year, with Collins running the show, the Owls are 8-4 and will face Duke in the Independence Bowl.
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