Arizona Wildcats legend Chuck Cecil is out after two seasons as the defensive coordinator with the Tennessee Titans, fired Thursday by coach Jeff Fisher.
“Do I feel like the defense was to blame?” Cecil told the Tennessean newspaper.
“I felt like the entire team was to blame. People are going to have different opinions about that, and everybody is entitled to their own opinion. But I have my own and I’ll take it with me.
“I have no regrets. I think my players on defense played hard, and we showed up pretty much week to week and executed. I think the guys bought in to what we were selling, and they bought in and played hard. We just needed to be better than we were.”
Cecil is one of (by my count) 11 former Arizona Wildcat players who are coaching in college or the professional ranks. (Thanks to ZonaDennis at UASports.net for contributing Adam Austin to the list.)
There are countless ex-Cats who are in coaching in junior college (such as Brandon Sanders assisting at Pima Community College) or high school or youth leagues.
But let’s look at the status of the guys in college or the pros:
Adam Austin (quarterback, 2002-06)
Austin, who got some starts as a senior for injured Willie Tuitama, is an offensive graduate assistant at Marshall.
Tony Bouie (safety, 1991-94)
As first reported at TucsonCitizen.com this week, Bouie, 38, is beginning his college coaching career as a graduate assistant at Akron.
Charlie Camp (linebacker, 1991-95)
He coaches the linebackers at Akron for Rob Ianello, who was an Arizona assistant for part of Camp’s time as a player at Arizona. Camp’s previous stops include Oregon State, San Jose State, Nevada and Arizona (2002).
Chuck Cecil (safety, 1984-87)
The Arizona All-American is out at Tennessee but will be paid by the Titans in 2011.
Charlie Dickey (offensive lineman, 1983-84)
Dickey, whose daughter Tasha plays for the Arizona women’s basketball team, coached at Arizona from 1992 to 2003. After stops at Washington and Utah, he’s been coaching the offensive line at Kansas State for the past two seasons for Bill Snyder.
Dave Fipp (safety, 1994-97)
He just finished his third season as an assistant special teams coach for the San Francisco 49ers, although that job is up in the air with the change in head coaches to Jim Harbaugh. There has been no word about the fate of the assistants, according to this recent blog post from the Sacramento Bee.
Jeff Hammerschmidt (safety, 1987-90)
Has been the special teams coordinator/defensive ends coach at Arizona for the past three seasons. Improvement on special teams will be a key factor for the Wildcats in 2011.
Peter Hansen (special teams, 1998-2001)
A two-sport athlete at Arizona — the 6-7 Hansen also played basketball for Lute Olson — he used his height to block seven placement kicks. He has been a defensive assistant at Stanford for the past two seasons for Jim Harbaugh; what now?
Ricky Hunley (linebacker, 1980-83)
Hunley, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, has extensive coaching experience in college and the NFL. He spent the past two seasons as the defensive coordinator of the Sacramento franchise in the United Football League, but told us last month he is “ready to move on.”
Tom Quinn (linebacker, 1988-90)
Has spent the past five seasons with the New York Giants, including the past four as the special teams coordinator. He spent the previous 15 season coaching in college, including at Stanford.
Joe Salave’a (defensive tackle, 1994-97)
The NFL veteran has two years of coaching experience under Dick Tomey at San Jose State, and he’s one of the new assistants for Arizona coach Mike Stoops. (Related: Stoops hires a tough guy in ex-Wildcat Joe Salave’a)
Anybody I missed? Help me out in the comments section … or e-mail me at email@example.com … or, by all means, follow me on Twitter: @AGWildcatReport