Danny White showed me thinking outside the box is okay, and that’s one reason why David Reeves should be the next defensive coordinator of the Vols.
I’m ready for the “Billy is sheeping it up for Josh Heupel” take. The truth is I’d rather have Lane Kiffin, Hugh Freeze, or Jamey Chadwell. However, Heupel didn’t hire himself. I appreciate his willingness to step into a role where he knew people would hate him on day one.
But, as White pulled a hire out of left field, I think Heupel should do the same with the defensive coordinator.
I’m sick of the same thought process that continues to plague this university. No, I don’t want any former players on the staff. And, no, I don’t want to hire Kevin Steele and Rodney Garner.
It’s time to move on and think differently. The state of the program is fully in rebuild mode, and we should treat it as such with coaching hires moving forward.
Does the name David Reeves ring a bell? Probably not, but I believe he deserves a fair shot as the next defensive coordinator for the Vols.
Reeves isn’t a household name, but the two-time Broyles Award nominee (nation’s top assistant coach) knows defense, and it’s time he gets his opportunity at a big-time job.
Reeves has been all over the place. He coached high school ball before moving to Southern Arkansas University as a defensive coordinator and coordinating recruiting/camps.
He got his shot as a defensive line coach with Bill Clark at Jacksonville State and followed Clark to UAB, where he’s created one of the best defenses in the nation year after year.
It’s not just that the defense is good, it’s disruptive, and that is the perfect match for Heupel’s offense.
In 2018 and 2019, UAB had 92 total sacks and 217 tackles for loss. Maybe most impressive is how his defenses have played on third down.
In 2018 the Blazers finished second nationally in third-down defense. Despite losing eight starters on defense, they finished third in 2019.
2018 was a record-shattering season for UAB’s defense. They ranked inside the top-10 for total defense and top-10 in five other defensive categories. The defense set school records with 48 sacks and 111 tackles for loss. While it was against Savannah State, Rice, and UTEP, the Blazers pitched three shoutouts.
UAB ranked seventh in total defense this past season, giving up just 4.69 yards per play to opponents. The Blazers finished the 2020 season with 21 sacks and 6.7 tackles for loss per game.
There are certainly questions with Reeves with his lack of experience with Power 5 football and recruiting the SEC. However, being a part of the UAB program’s rebuild could be much-needed knowledge in the Vols turn around.
If I’m Heupel, I at least give Reeves and call and see what he can offer. Let’s think outside the box on this rebuild and do things differently. You know never, it may turn out to be the right decision.