With five coaches dropping on his staff and four vacancies still open, staff Dooley has solidified one of those spots, Sam Pittman, former associate head coach and offensive line coach at the University of North Carolina, has accepted an offer to replace Harry Hiestand, who departed for Notre Dame, along the Tennessee offensive line.
Pittman just concluded his fifth season as North Carolina's offensive line coach and his first as the associate head coach.
The El Reno, Okla. native has also proved himself a valuable asset in the area of recruiting signing the nation's No. 2 rated tackle in each of the last two years — James Hurst in 2010 and Kiaro Holt in 2011. He was also named the 2011 Scout.com/FoxSports.com ACC Conference Recruiter of the Year.
In 2008, Pittman helped develop Carolina offensive tackle Garrett Reynolds into a second-team all-conference selection. Reynolds was named to the 2008 Lombardi Award watch list and was selecterd in the fifth round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons.
Pittman came to Carolina after serving four seasons as Northern Illinois' offensive line coach (2003-06) and three years as its assistant head coach (2004-06). In 2006, the Huskies' offensive line paved the way for the nation's leading rusher, Garrett Wolfe, to run for more than 1,900 yards.
In four years at NIU, Pittman produced nine All-Mid-American Conference linemen, including seven first-team selections. NIU had a tailback top the 1,500-yard rushing mark all four years. Pittman also coached the offensive line coach at Oklahoma from 1996-98 where he coached first-round draft pick Stockar McDougle.
Before NIU, Pittman produced an 11-9-1 record as head coach at Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College from 1992-93. His 1993 team earned the school's first bowl bid in 23 years at the Valley of the Sun Bowl in Phoenix.
Pittman earned his bachelors degree in education from Pittsburg State (Kan.) where he earned four football letters, finished with 35 straight starts and won first-team NAIA All-America, first-team All-Central State Intercollegiate Conference, team captain and co-MVP honors as a senior at defensive end.