Chizik Talks About Staff, Recruiting

Auburn's new coach Gene Chizik talks about hiring a staff and gives his thoughts on recruiting.

Auburn, Ala.--Gene Chizik's job as Auburn's new head football coach started quickly on Monday as he met with the media for an hour to discuss his feelings on the job and his philosophy. Now the real work begins and that means putting together a staff while also hitting the recruiting trail.

Former staff members at both Auburn and Iowa State have been told to look for jobs with Chizik's search beginning to take shape. Chizik said while he's not ruling out anyone from either staff coming to Auburn, he's not going to stop at anything to get the best hires he can for the Auburn program in 2008 and beyond.

"I've made a commitment to make the best hires for Auburn," Chizik said. "Whatever that entails. At the end of the day that's the bottom line. I don't want to go into details about this staff, the Iowa State staff, at the end of the day it's going to be the best people that are the best fit for us here at Auburn.

"If I feel like, whether it's on this staff or anybody else, if I feel like they're a person that philosophically in the same realm of what I believe in and I feel like they are best fit for what they are doing it doesn't matter if it's on this staff or any other staff," Chizik added. "I'm going to talk to them. I'm not discriminating in any shape or form. I'm going to honestly talk to the best people for the job."

The recruiting will be hectic for Chizik along with Joe Whitt Sr., Phillip Lolley and Jimmy Perry, who will all hit the road on Monday afternoon to begin recruiting for the Tigers until a staff is put in place. Chizik said he'll be working on his staff and on the phones while trying to reach as many commitments and prospects as possible in the coming days.

"That's kind of what creates such a whirlwind here right now because there are so many angles in recruiting," Chizik said. "This is why this is a little bit different. It's one thing if you walked into some place and there are five commitments or 10 commitments or 12. You've got 20-plus.

"Not only do you have to evaluate and really talk to and get in touch with those guys, there are some other ones out there you want to look at too, certainly starting in this state because there are so many great players in this state. I think the creates a little bit of a whirlwind."

When Chizik was at Auburn he was known for being a relentless worker, both on the field and in the recruiting game. He said that's something that he plans to continue because he feels like it's the job of the head coach to be very visible.

"If one head coach falls behind the other in terms of how hard they are working and how visible they are in the recruiting thing, I think it hurts your university," Chizik said. "That's one of the things I think a head coach has to understand. One of the main jobs of the head coach isn't so much anymore sitting in on every X and O meeting and things of that nature, your top job is as a recruiter.

"That's what you have to do. I think it's probably changed over the last 10 years in this league and with the exposure of television in the last 10 years…it does matter when that head coach walks into a school and it does matter when that head coach is in a home. I think probably over the last 10 years it has gotten greater."


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