Greg Brown will become the UA's co-defensive coordinator and will be with the Cats when they play Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl
The University of Colorado announced Saturday that secondary coach Greg Brown is leaving the football program to become co-defensive coordinator at Arizona.
Brown will replace Mark Stoops, the younger brother of UA coach Mike Stoops, who is leaving to be the defensive coordinator at Florida State. Brown, who has coached mostly in the NFL as well as two stints at Colorado, transitions immediately to Arizona and is expected to help coach the Cats against Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl on Dec. 30.
Colorado ended its season against the Cornhuskers on Nov. 27 at Boulder. The Buffaloes lost 28-20 despite holding Nebraska’s offense to only 217 yards in total offense.
The University of Arizona has not released information on Brown’s hire, so it is not known what other coach will handle the defensive coordinator responsibilities. The school can not currently release information on the hire because the position has to be posted for a week.
Mike Stoops focuses his attention on defense, with his background as a defensive coordinator at Oklahoma. Another possibility for the co-defensive coordinator position is linebackers coach Tim Kish, who is a particularly strong recruiter who has also served as defensive coordinator at Illinois (1997-2000), Ohio (2001) and Indiana (2002-2003).
“We’ve been very fortunate to have Brownie on our staff, and we wish him and his family the best,” CU coach Dan Hawkins said in a statement.
Brown, 52, has been CU’s secondary coach since Hawkins arrived in 2006. His departure finishes his second stint as an assistant at CU. Brown also coached the Buffs’ secondary from 1991 to 1993, when he coaches Jim Thorpe Award winners Deon Figures and Chris Hudson. Figures won the award in 1992, while Hudson won it in 1994, the year after Brown left.
Brown returned to Colorado in 2006 after serving as a defensive assistant with the NFL’s New Orleans Saints in 2005. He has coached in the NFL for 15 years.
“I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity that Hawk gave me, especially coming out of New Orleans and post-Hurricane Katrina,” Brown said in a statement. “I know in my heart CU is on the right track with Dan Hawkins, and I learned a lot as a member of his staff. That made this a very tough decision for me, but this should be increased responsibility as a co-coordinator and a chance to call some defenses.”
Four of CU’s five starters in the secondary in 2009 earned varying degrees of All-Big 12 Conference honors. Cornerback Cha’pelle Brown and Jimmy Smith were named second-team all-conference. Corner Jalil Brown and safety Benjamin Burney earned honorable mention.
His 15 years in the NFL includes joining the Atlanta staff as defensive backs coach in 1994. The Falcons finished second that season in the league with 23 interceptions.
He spent the 1995-96 seasons as the secondary coach for San Diego, with the Chargers finishing in the top five both years in fewest yards allowed per completion. He also coached Rodney Harrison, who eventually would become one of the league’s top safeties. He moved on to the Tennessee Oilers, coaching the secondary in both 1997 and 1998; he again coached three of the top defensive backs in the game, cornerback Samari Rolle and safeties Blaine Bishop and All-Pro Marcus Robertson.
In 1999, he served as the defensive backs coach for the San Francisco 49ers. He rejoined the Falcons as secondary coach for the 2000 and 2001 seasons before moving on to New Orleans, where he was a defensive assistant for quality control in 2002 before he was promoted to defensive assistant/cornerbacks coach in 2003, a position he held for three seasons with the Saints.
Mark Stoops was the secondary coach at Miami before joining his brother’s staff in 2004 as the defensive coordinator.
Information about Brown’s coaching background provided by the Colorado media relations department