New Year, New Hires: Freeze Announces New Coaches To Replace Outgoing Departures

With several Flames football coaches being given opportunities elsewhere, the highlight being defensive coordinator Scott Symons departure to SMU, the Flames are reloading for 2022.  

Head Coach Hugh Freeze has hired three new coaches with collegiate and professional experience, both on offense and defense.

Darius Eubanks joins the team as its defensive backs coach. Eubanks played in the NFL as a linebacker from 2013 until his retirement in 2016. In 2017, he started his career coaching at Arkansas. Last season, Eubanks served as the safeties coach at Sun Belt outfit Georgia State, who finished 8-5. 

Jeremy Garrett joins the team as a defensive line coach. Garrett served as the assistant defensive line coach of the Cleveland Browns for the last two seasons — a line that has boasted a generational talent in Myles Garrett.  

Chris Klenakis joins the team as an offensive line coach. Klenakis spent the previous season working as the quality control coach at Sun Belt unit South Alabama. Over the course of his coaching career, Klenakis has trained 24 offensive linemen who made it to the NFL.  

Of the coaching staff promotions, Josh Aldridge will shift focus from the team’s defensive linemen to its linebackers as well as become a co-defensive coordinator alongside Jack Curtis, who will still also serve as the safeties coach. Co-coordinators are becoming more of a common occurrence in college football lately.

Aldridge has had success in his career working with defensive linemen, and seven players he worked with have been named to the Phil Steele FBS Independent All-Conference teams.  

Curtis’ defense ranked No. 6 in passing yards allowed and No. 21 in team passing efficiency defense last season, according to Flames Insider. 

The new coaches will take to the field this fall when Liberty travels to face Southern Mississippi Sept. 3. 

Licari is a news reporter.

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