Several Miami football defensive coordinator candidates emerging

Apr 13, 2019; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 13, 2019; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /

Three candidates are emerging as defensive coordinator for the Miami football team according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Dolphins linebacker coach Anthony Campanile, Houston defensive coordinator Doug Belk and Seattle Seahawks defensive line coach Clint Hurtt are all candidates to become defensive coordinator.

Campanile was a safety and linebacker at Rutgers from 2001 through 2004. The college coaching career for Campanile began as a defensive assistant at Rutgers in 2012 and ’13. New Miami head coach Mario Cristobal was an assistant at Rutgers from 2001 through 2003 during the first three seasons Campanile played there.

Campanile’s first full-time coaching position was as the tight ends coach for Rutgers in 2013 and ’14. Campanile spent one more season at Rutgers before becoming the defensive backs coach at Boston College in 2016 and ’17 and co-defensive coordinator in 2018. Campanile was the Michigan linebackers coach in 2019.

Brian Flores hired Campanile as the Dolphins LB coach in 2020 and he remained there through this past season. In his one season as co-defensive coordinator, Rutgers finished 89th nationally allowing 31.4 points, per game and 69th in total defense with 401.5 yards given up per game.

Belk played at Carson-Newman from 2007 through 2010. His career accelerated quickly after being a graduate assistant at Alabama from 2010 through 2014. Cristobal was an assistant at Alabama from 2013 through 2016. Belk got his first full time asssitant position as the West Virginia cornerbacks coach from 2017-’18.

In 2019 Belk moved onto Houston and has been the defensive coordinator for the Cougars since then. Houston was 19th nationally in 2021 allowing 20.4 PPG. The Cougars finished sixth in FBS in 2021 allowing 302.2 PPG. Houston was 12th with 98 tackles for loss and tied for sixth nationally with 43 sacks.

Seattle finished 11th allowing 21.5 PPG in 2021. The Seahawks were 28th allowing 379.1 yards per game. Hurtt oversaw a Seattle defensive line that was 18th in quarterbacks hits and tackles and tackles for loss, 23rd in sacks and 29th in sack percentage. Miami has had recent success playing aggressive defensively.

Hurtt began his career as a graduate assistant at Miami in 2003 and ’04 under Larry Coker. Hurtt left for one season to become the defensive line coach FIU. Following his one season with the Panthers, Hurtt returned to Miami as the DL coach from 2006 through 2009. Hurtt entered the NFL with the Chicago Bears in 2014.

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Hurtt was the Bears outside linebackers coach in 2015 and ’16 before being hired by Seattle in 2017 as the assistant head coach and defensive line coach. Belk, Campanile and Hurtt all have connections to Cristobal. No timeline has been given on when Cristobal plans to finalize the Miami coaching staff.