Sources: Ruffin McNeill heading to OU staff

First coaching domino falls for Lincoln Riley, sources reporting Ruffin McNeill to join OU staff.

Head coach Lincoln Riley has made his first coaching move at Oklahoma, and he’s going back to a very familiar face.

Sources confirm to Sooners Illustrated on Wednesday afternoon that Ruffin McNeill will be joining OU’s staff for the 2017 season.

McNeill coached with Riley at Texas Tech and at East Carolina. McNeill has spent last season as the defensive line coach at Virginia.

The nature of his duties have not been released by OU just yet, but a source said McNeill would be sharing defensive line duties with second-year defensive line coach Calvin Thibodeaux.

McNeill, 58, was East Carolina’s head coach during Riley’s five-year stay as offensive coordinator (2010-15) at the American Athletic Conference school. The pair was also at Texas Tech together on Mike Leach’s staff in 2003-09.

Riley, 33, was named OU’s head coach, replacing a retiring Bob Stoops last week.

A press release sent by OU confirmed McNeill's hiring, saying he will be an assistant head coach and coach defensive tackles. He made $460,000 last year at Virginia.

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