<
>

Breckterfield, Tuiasosopo happy to stay on

12/16/2011

Inoke Breckterfield and Marques Tuiasosopo both expressed relief upon learning that incoming coach Jim Mora wanted to retain them as part of the new coaching staff.

Breckterfield, the first-year defensive line coach, will stay on in the same capacity under Mora and Tuiasosopo, an intern on Rick Nuehiesel's staff who was recently promoted to quarterbacks coach, will coach the tight ends under Mora.

"Not knowing what is going to happen is natural for anyone to wonder what is going to happen next," Breckterfield said. "And when he offered the job there is a natural feeling of relief."

Breckterfield's unit drew some criticism for poor play early on his season, but had a better second half and he said was happy to get he chance to stay on and continue to try and improve. Defensive lineman Datone Jones was happy to hear his position coach would remain aboard.

"I’m excited," Jones said. "He’s a great guy. He got his feet wet his first year and he’ll come back and do bigger things next year. Guys are used to him now and he’s going to get a lot of things in this program."

Tuiasosopo, a former quarterback at Washington and with the Oakland Raiders, will have some learning to do in his new role as tight ends coach, but he said he's not that concerned.

"One thing about being a quarterback, especially playing in the NFL, you get to learn about everybody," he said. "I’ve got some friends that still play tight end I can call to get some tips. It’ll be a fast learning curve, but I’m fired up for it."

Mostly, he said, he's happy that he's getting the chance to be a full time coach. He was an intern at Washington and at UCLA before taking on the quarterbacks coaching responsibilities two weeks ago when Neuheisel left.

"You never know how it’s all going to shake out so when coach Mora offered me the job, I was pretty excited," Tuiasosopo said. "When you work for three years as an intern and a strength coach then to get your first job at UCLA, that’s just a tremendous blessing."