Pitt Panthers head football coach Paul Chryst announced the filling of three open positions on his staff, including filling the hole of defensive coordinator.
Defensive backs coach Matt House was promoted to the role of defensive coordinator, while Chryst hired veteran coach John Palermo as defensive ends and linebackers coach. He also announced that former Pitt defensive back Hank Poteat (1996-99) will join the staff as a graduate assistant and work with the cornerbacks.
Last season, House coached a secondary that helped Pitt boast the nation’s No. 17 defense in fewest yards allowed (330.54 yards/game). The Panthers’ also owned lofty NCAA rankings in pass defense (20th, 194.15 yards/game), pass efficiency defense (21st, 113.12 rating) and interceptions (26th, 15 total).
House joined Chryst’s staff last year after working with the NFL’s St. Louis Rams (2009-11) and Carolina Panthers (2008). He replaces Dave Huxtable, who left Pitt to take the same position at North Carolina State.
Palermo is widely regarded as one of the finest defensive assistants in college football. He is a 38-year coaching veteran who spent 15 years at the University of Wisconsin.
Poteat returns to his alma mater where he was a two-time first-team All-Big East cornerback and led Pitt in interceptions in 1998 and 1999. He was a third-round selection of the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2000 NFL Draft and played for five NFL teams over 10 seasons and earned a Super Bowl ring as a member of the 2004 New England Patriots.
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