Via the official site, head coach Matt Wells officially announced that Kevin Cosgrove will join the staff as the linebackers coach.
“We are pleased to welcome a coach to our staff with such significant experience like Coach Cosgrove,” Wells said. “His defenses have always been well-prepared and aggressive over his career, which fits the culture we are looking to build here at Texas Tech. We are fortunate he, his wife Shelly and their family have decided to become part of our program.”
Cosgrove was the lead defensive analyst at LSU last year. This always sounds less than impressive because we’re not sure what that means. Sometimes a defensive analyst is someone like Sonny Dykes, who I think was fired at Cal and then spent a year as TCU’s lead offensive analyst before becoming the head coach at SMU. I think the idea here is that Wells wanted someone who was also a defensive coordinator previously, that was Todd Orlando’s biggest advantage and one where we weren’t sure who was going to call the defense, Orlando or Keith Patterson. I don’t think we’ll have the same question here, but Cosgrove has generally been a coordinator over the past few years, whether it be at New Mexico, Nebraska, and Wisconsin.
The other question that I think I’ve always been unsure about is what does an analyst do on a defensive staff. Cosgrove used to be the defensive coordinator at Nebraksa during the Bill Callahan era and lucky for you Cosgrove spoke with former Nebraska Cornhusker Adam Carriker prior to the National Championship game:
Adam Carriker: Yeah, it’s been a while since we’ve chatted. You’re down there with LSU getting ready to play for the national championship. So, defensive analyst… explain to everyone at home exactly what that means?
Kevin Cosgrove: Well, we have a couple different guys who are responsible for certain things. My basic responsibility is to prepare for the game ahead. I have various responsibilities as far as breakdowns for the game ahead. Film is always broken down by many guys. I look at all the cut ups and put together the charts for the run game, short yardage, goal-line areas, and any additional things they may do; fly sweeps, formations to the boundary, any tendencies they may have, I present them to the defensive staff.
I think this all sounds good and it makes me feel better that he’s essentially spent the past year breaking down offenses and then presenting that to the defensive staff so the defense can do their job better. That also means that Cosgrove really knows new Baylor head coach Dave Aranda as he’s essentially fed Aranda information all year long. I don’t know that Wells hired Cosgrove just for that reason, but it may be an added benefit. Of course, it goes the other way as well in that Aranda knows Cosgrove’s tendencies as well.
I also want to add that Cosgrove was the defensive coordinator at Nebraska when Mike Leach and Texas Tech hung 100 on the Cornhuskers I think (it wasn’t 100, but you get the idea) so . . .
Here’s some video of Cosgrove who was at New Mexico as the defensive coordinator and then Bob Davie demoted Cosgrove to linebackers coach and Cosgrove said, “forget that,” and went to LSU as the defensive analyst.
So the main takeaway for me is that Wells wanted a coach that was also a defensive coordinator that can maybe help game plan a bit and maybe more of a big picture sort of guy. I’m also still uncertain about whether or not this is a good hire. ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg tweeted this out and he’s a national guy that seems to have a pretty good pulse on lots of things.
#TexasTech announces Kevin Cosgrove as new LBs coach. Former defensive coordinator at Wisconsin, Nebraska and Minnesota, most recently a senior defensive analyst under Dave Aranda at LSU. Strong hire to replace Todd Orlando, who left for DC job at USC.
— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) February 11, 2020
Do I know if it is a “strong hire”? No, not really, but maybe this post gives you a better idea about what Cosgrove was doing and who he is.