Purdue tabs Tibesar to lead defense


First, a coordinator named Matt Canada. Now, a coordinator from the Montreal Alouettes.

What's going on with the Big Ten coaching carousel, eh? Not like you hosers would know.

Bad jokes aside, Purdue on Thursday named Tim Tibesar as its new defensive coordinator/linebackers coach. Tibesar spent the past three seasons with the CFL's Alouettes, serving as linebackers coach in 2009 and 2010 before being promoted to defensive coordinator in 2011. He was Kansas State's defensive coordinator in 2007-08 before heading up north.

Purdue didn't officially announce the firing of defensive coordinator Gary Emanuel nor the departure of linebackers coach Phil Elmassian to Massachusetts, although both coaches' names recently were removed from the official roster. Although the Boilers' defense wasn't spectacular in 2011, ranking 73rd in yards allowed and 63rd in points allowed, Emanuel's dismissal after just one year as coordinator came as a bit of a surprise. Head coach Danny Hope promoted Emanuel from co-defensive coordinator to the sole coordinator role after the 2010 season.

Hope has shuffled his coaching staff after each of his three seasons as Purdue's leading man. He provides a bit of insight into the change in his always entertaining statements, this one announcing Tibesar's hiring.

"[Tibesar] is on the cutting edge of the science of defensive football. The Canadian Football League is an offensive league -- with 12 players per side on a wider field and three downs to get a first down -- and features the zone read game that we are seeing more and more of at the college level. Tim knows how to defend that offense, and I am excited to see him bring his defense to Purdue.

"The head coach of Montreal, Marc Trestman, is one of the great minds in football, and he could not have offered a more glowing recommendation. Tim is a high-energy, high-morals guy who our players will really like. He's a bona fide winner. Our football program got significantly better today."

Man, love those Hope statements.

Under Tibesar's watch, the Alouettes led the CFL in rushing defense (92.4 ypg allowed) last season. He was part of a staff that helped Montreal's defense lead the CFL in 22 of 26 statistical categories in 2009.

Tibesar didn't fare nearly as well at Kansas State, which ranked 117th nationally in total defense in 2008 and 110th and 86th nationally in points allowed in 2008 and 2007, respectively. If memory serves, the Big 12 had a few zone-read offenses back then, so he'll need better results at Purdue.

He inherits a defense that features talented players such as tackle Kawann Short and cornerback Ricardo Allen. Purdue returns seven starters and could be very strong at both defensive tackle and cornerback. The Boilers need a bit more from their pass rush and must tighten up against the pass after allowing 221 yards a game last fall.

Some Purdue players expressed frustration on Twitter following Emanuel's departure, so it'll be important for Tibesar to establish a rapport with a group that has seen different coordinators every year (former coordinator Donn Landholm remains on staff as outside linebackers coach).

Hope still must fill a vacancy at defensive line coach.