Eve Craig/SunDevilSource

ASU names Slater defensive line coach

Arizona State announced the hire of former Kansas assistant Michael Slater as the program's new defensive line coach Wednesday.

Arizona State coach Todd Graham has said he likes hiring former high school coaches because they bring a teacher's perspective to his program.

On Wednesday, Graham added to his staff with the hire of former Kansas defensive line coach Michael Slater, who spent 12 seasons coaching high school football in Texas. 

ASU announced the hire of Slater and new offensive line coach Rob Sale Wednesday afternoon, hours after multiple reports of Sale's hiring broke. 

Slater joins the Sun Devils after spending the 2016 season with Kansas, where he helped sophomore defensive end Dorance Armstrong, Jr. become the first unanimous All-Big-12 Conference selection in Jayhawks' football history. At Kansas, Slater worked under former Graham assistant David Beaty, who became the Jayhawks' head coach in 2014. 

Prior to arriving at Kansas, Slater spent four seasons working as a defensive line coach at Rice. In 2014, Slater's final season with the Owls, Rice set a program record with 39 sacks. 

Before coaching at Rice, Slater worked at a pair of Houston-area high schools, coaching for five seasons at Alief Hastings before moving on to coach at Alief Taylor for seven seasons. 

Aside from announcing the hires of Slater and Sale, ASU also promoted wide receivers' coach Rob Likens to a co-offensive coordinator role, and named running backs' coach John Simon assistant head coach. 

ASU's previous defensive line coach, Joe Seumalo, was hired prior to the 2016 season, but was taken off the road as a recruiter during the offseason and won't be back with the program, according to program sources. 

With the hires of Slater and Sale, ASU's coaching staff is now set for the 2017 season, unless the NCAA decides to allow FBS coaching staffs to have 10 assistant coaches. A decision on the potential addition of a 10th assistant is expected in April at the earliest, though the Football Oversight Committee has discussed moving the vote on a 10th assistant to January of 2018. 


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