New Tennessee coach Josh Heupel has pretty much wrapped up his coaching staff with the addition of a new defensive coordinator. According to Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports, Penn State co-defensive coordinator Tim Banks will take over the Vols’ defense for 2021.
Banks just finished his fifth season at Penn State where he coached safeties in addition to his co-DC duties. Linebackers coach Brent Pry has served as Penn State’s defensive coordinator since 2014. Though 2020 was a rough season for the Nittany Lions, they still finished in the top half of the Big Ten in the major defensive statistical categories, including second in pass defense.
Prior to his time at Penn State, Banks held defensive or co-defensive coordinator jobs at Illinois (2012-15), Cincinnati (2010-11) and his alma mater, Central Michigan (2007-09). His 25-year coaching career spans stints at Maryland, Bowling Green and Memphis as well.
Heupel’s staff is nearly complete, though Tennessee has not yet announced its completion yet. The first-year coach is reportedly bringing several staff members, mostly on the offensive side, from UCF. Conversely, Heupel reportedly only retained a couple of members off Jeremy Pruitt’s staff as he looks to dig the Vols out of their years-long hole with NCAA issues on the horizon.