Pac-12: Tim Hundley

Coaching issues not done at UCLA

February, 15, 2011
UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel admitted that his nearly two months search for a new defensive coordinator was "long and exhaustive," but even the hiring of Joe Tresey has not completely ended the coaching intrigue for his team.

For one, the Bruins still have a vacancy on the defensive side of the ball after Neuheisel fired line coach Todd Howard last week. While Neuheisel said he "probably" would be looking for a defensive line coach, he and Tresey have not decided position responsibilities for 2011. Tresey is a secondary specialist but he has also coached linebackers. Presently, Tim Hundley is the Bruins secondary coach and Clark Lea oversees linebackers.

Further, Tresey is a 4-3 coach. One of the reasons Neuheisel fired Chuck Bullough in December is a stated desire to adopt a 3-4.

During a conference call Tuesday, Neuheisel said what he most wanted was "flexibility." For his part, Tresey said that his scheme is a "multiple 4-3" and that "we have the ability to play some 3-4."

Said Neuheisel, "It became very clear listening to Joe explaining his tactics that there are a lot of different ways you could go."

It is no secret that Tresey wasn't Neuheisel's first choice. Neuheisel even said last week that he "had the guy picked three times" but things didn't work out.

Neuheisel wasn't sure of the date he first interviewed Tresey -- either late December or early January -- but he then turned his primary attention to other candidates, such as Rocky Long, Vic Fangio, Randy Shannon and Rocky Seto. Part of that, he said, was a familiarity with the other candidates that he didn't have with Tresey.

"I wanted to be thorough; I didn't know Joe," Neuheisel said. "I wanted to be right."

That included Neuheisel calling Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly. Kelly, while head coach at Cincinnati, fired Tresey after the 2008 season, and one of the reasons -- at least one made public -- was Kelly's desire to switch from a 4-3 to a 3-4. Neuheisel noted that he needed to understand what he called a "a hiccup" on Tresey's resume.

"I wanted to get to the bottom why that happened," Neuheisel said. "I was comfortable after the conversation with both Coach Kelly and with Joe that there wasn't anything that would be of concern to me going forward with Joe as our coordinator. [The problem at Cincinnati] was a timing issue."

Tresey said that Neuheisel kept him in the loop on where he stood throughout the long and exhaustive search.

And, in the end, he got the job.

UCLA hires Lea as linebackers coach

February, 24, 2010
UCLA has promoted Clark Lea from graduate assistant to linebackers coach and assigned the entire secondary to assistant Tim Hundley.

Hundley shared responsibilities for the Bruins' secondary last year with cornerbacks coach Carnell Lake, who left the staff Monday for family reasons, according to the school.

The release announcing Lea's promotion said that although defensive coordinator Chuck Bullough was officially listed as the linebackers coach in 2009, Lea, a second-year graduate assistant, "was hands-on with the linebacking corps."

“Clark is an outstanding young coach with a very bright future,” UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel said in a statement. “I thought he did a fine job this past season with our group of linebackers. In addition, he is a dogged recruiter. Even though he was not allowed to go off-campus, he made a great impression on recruits and their families when they came to campus and built great relationships with several of the young men who signed with us, most notably Aramide Olaniyan.”

Lea (pronounced Lee) also coached as a Bruins graduate assistant under former defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker in 2006. In between his two stints as a UCLA GA, he served two seasons (2007 and 2008) as linebackers coach at South Dakota State and was recruiting coordinator the latter year.

In 2005, he served as an intern for the UCLA staff and also was an assistant football coach at Harvard-Westake High School.

Prior to UCLA, Lea served as an offensive graduate assistant at Vanderbilt, where he played fullback from 2002 to 2004, the final year as a graduate student.

During his collegiate career, Lea was a member of the SEC Honor Roll and an All-Academic SEC honoree. He was also a John Wooden Cup finalist, a trophy awarded by Athletes for a Better World, and a National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame honoree. He earned a bachelor’s in political science from Vanderbilt in 2005 and a master's in political science from Vanderbilt in 2007.

Pac-10 lunch links: Stanford kicks off spring practices

February, 24, 2009

Posted by's Ted Miller

Stanford is the first to begin spring practices -- do you smell the freshly cut grass?

  • Former Arizona defensive end Johnathan Turner, whose career ended after he was charged last spring with sexually assaulting a woman at a party, is considering a plea deal.  
  • The Wildcats' new running backs coach should hit the ground running.
  • To help get acclimated to two new offensive staff hires, California has pushed spring practices back four days.
  • What's going on with JC receiver Tyrece Gaines and his paperwork at Oregon?
  • Stanford has a lot of guys back and a lot of questions this spring.
  • Experience -- lots of it as a defensive coordinator -- is why Tim Hundley is UCLA's new secondary coach.
  • Checking in with the Washington defensive ends, who need to produce more -- a lot more -- pressure next fall.
  • Which Pac-10 team is Running Back U? And here's a list of the top backs each school has produced from 1999-2008.

Pac-10 lunch links: Pac-10 at the NFL combine

February, 23, 2009

Posted by's Ted Miller

We're throwing at the NFL combine.

  • Former Arizona receiver Mike Thomas continues to be short, but Money Mike also continues to do things that figure to make him a lot of coin when the NFL draft rolls around. Like run faster than Percy Harvin. (And note that former UA OT Eben Britton's 40 time probably won't hurt him either).
  • And... not to let that combine list linger or anything... but who would have thought that USC linebacker Kaluka Maiava would do just as many reps with 225 pounds -- 30 -- as Brian Cushing, and both would leave sure-fire top-10 LB pick Aaron Curry in their dust (25)?
  • Speaking of Cushing... he tries to respond to rumors of steroid use.
  • Speaking of draft prospects, whatever happened to Rudy Carpenter's? He needs to convince scouts that a big arm isn't the only thing that matters.
  • Andy Levitre, late of Oregon State, talks... you guessed it! -- NFL combine.
  • Lots of Pac-10 names -- Patrick Chung, Rulon Davis, Keenan Lewis -- in this combine story.
  • Tim Hundley will leave SMU to become UCLA's new secondary coach. Hundley was Rick Neuheisel's defensive coordinator at Colorado and Washington.
  • It looks like Washington will have an easier time funding new uniforms than funding a massive renovation of Husky Stadium.