Miami football WR coach options after Leonard Hankerson withdraws

3 Jan 2002: Mandatory Credit: Brian Bahr/Getty Images
3 Jan 2002: Mandatory Credit: Brian Bahr/Getty Images /

Update: Multiple outlets are reporting on Wednesday morning that Kevin Beard is set to become the wide receivers coach for the Miami football program. This will be the second stint for Beard as a Miami after being on Al Golden’s staff in 2014 and 2015. Beard is coming to Miami from Toledo where he has been on staff since 2017.

The Miami football program lost a potential candidate when former Hurricanes record-setting wide receiver Leonard Hankerson withdrew as first reported by Gary Ferman of CaneSport and reiterated by Susan Miller Degnan of the Miami Herald. Hankerson decided to stay with the San Francisco 49ers as their WR coach.

Hankerson holds the Miami single-season record with 13 touchdown receptions and game with three trips into the end zone. Baltimore Ravens assistant receivers coach and pass game specialist and Toledo WR coach and former Hurricane Kevin Beard remain candidates a source told Miller Degnan.

Beard played at Miami from 1999 through 2003 and began his collegiate coaching career with the Hurricanes in 2014. Beard was the Miami assistant director of football operations in 2014 and the WR coach and passing game coordinator in 2015. When Mark Richt was hired following the 2015 season he did not retain Beard.

After Miami, Beard was a quality control assistant in 2016 at Georgia under Kirby Smart who replaced Richt as head coach with the Bulldogs. After one season at Georgia, Beard was hired as WR coach at Florida International in December 2016. That didn’t last long as Tennessee hired Beard as WR coach in February 2017.

After one season at Tennessee, Beard joined the staff at Toledo under former Miami offensive coordinator candidate Jason Candle as the director of player personnel and assistant recruiting coordinator in 2018. A year later, Beard was promoted to the Rockets’ WR coach where he has had a lot of success.

Per his Toledo biography, Beard was ranked as the fifth-best recruiter in the Mid-American Conference in 2022. Beard has coached multiple All-Conference players and some who made the NFL at Toledo. The Miami football team would provide the Plantation alum a chance to return home and coach at his alma mater.

Williams had extensive experience as a college coach before Baltimore. As an FBS assistant, Williams was the WR coach at San Jose State from 2001 through 2004, San Jose City College from 2005-2008, Fresno State from 2009 through 2011, Tulane from 2012-14 and Nebraska 2015-17.

Williams was the lead recruiter for five  four-star signees as a collegiate assistant including Keyshawn Johnson Jr. at Nebraska. Several players that Williams coached earned All-Conference and would go on to play in the NFL. Williams played for the Frankfurt Galaxy of NFL Europe in 1995 and two with the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

Next. Who could Miami hire as WR coach?. dark

There has been no indication when Mario Cristobal expects to make a decision hiring a new WR coach or defensive end coach after losing Rod Wright to the Houston Texans earlier this week. The Miami football program has had to rebuild the majority of its staff from 2022. The Hurricanes begin spring practice on Saturday.