Five AC hires made official by Oregon State

OREGON STATE MADE it official, announcing the hires of five assistant coaches on Tuesday night. Coming to Corvallis to join Gary Andersen's first staff at Oregon State: defensive coordinator/assistant head coach Kalani Sitake, defensive assistant coaches Chad Kauha'aha'a, Ilaisa Tuiaki and Derrick Odum and offensive assistant T.J. Woods.

It is expected T.J. Woods will coach the offensive line. It was earlier expected Chad Kauha'aha'a would coach the defensive line, but with the announcement Ilaisa Tuiaki was coming to OSU from Utah along with Kalani Sitake, it's unclear whether Tuiaki or Kauha'aha'a would handle the d-line.

Tell you what, we'll get back to that.

The big news that was made official was of course that Sitake, said to be in demand this offseason, is headed to Oregon State under Gary Andersen as the Beavs' new DC.

Sitake has been the defensive coordinator at Utah since 2009, and he's been with the Ute program for 10 seasons. He was making $500,000 year this past season. And Utah's defenses generally put up some pretty good numbers.

In 2014, Utah led the nation with 55 sacks, ranked fifth in the Pac-12 in scoring defense (26.2 points allowed per game), fourth in total defense (403.1 yards allowed per game), ninth in rushing defense (158.1 yards allowed per game) and third in pass defense (245 yards allowed per game). In 2013, Utah was second in the nation in sacks with 3.25 takedowns per game.

But Utah's AD declined to offer Sitake (and other assistants) this past year a multi-year contract after Utah had fallen short of expectations since joining the Pac-12. That ultimately led to Sitake wanting to explore other options with the Utah beat writers reporting the relationship had been damaged.

Tuiaki, meanwhile, was the defensive line coach at Utah the past two seasons. Oregon State did not make clear whether Tuiaki or Kauha'aha'a would coach the d-line, only saying they were defensive assistants.

Tuiaki joined the Utes’ staff after spending the 2009-11 seasons with Andersen at Utah State, serving as running backs coach, special teams and recruiting coordinator over his tenure at USU. Tuiaki began his college coaching career in 2008 as a graduate assistant coach at Utah.

Kauha’aha’a also spent the past two seasons as defensive line coach, at Wisconsin under Andersen. Wisconsin ranks in the top four of the league’s major defensive statistical categories, including second for overall defense allowing 282.3 yards per game (4th in the NCAA) this season.

He spent the 2011 and ’12 seasons at Utah and before that, he too spent the 2009 and ’10 seasons as the defensive line coach at Utah State under Andersen.

Odum has spent the last seven seasons as the safeties coach at SMU, where he coached players that earned nine all-conference honors. From 2005-07 Odum was the safeties coach at Utah under Andersen when he was the Utes' defensive coordinator.

Woods also spent the last two seasons at Wisconsin as the offensive line coach. He served as the offensive line coach for Andersen at Utah State for the 2011 and ’12 seasons, and as the Aggies’ tight ends/special teams coach in 2009-10. It is expected he will serve as the Beavs' o-line coach but Oregon State, as with others in the release, did not specify his coaching position other than to say he'll serve on the offensive side of the ball.

The Badgers are ranked third in the nation for rushing averaging 314 yards per game. His 2013 offensive line unit helped the Badgers set a school record for offensive yards per game (480.8) in 2014. Three of his linemen earned Big Ten All-Conference honors, including Associated Press All-American Ryan Groy. The Badgers in 2013 broke the NCAA record for combined rushing by teammates with 3,053 yards.

Andersen also announced Evan Simon will be the Beavs' strength and conditioning coach for football. Simon served under Andersen as the Badgers’ strength and conditioning coach the last two years, and the prior four years in the same capacity under Andersen at Utah State.


BeaverBlitz Top Stories