Just got off the phone about a half hour ago with a high-ranking UM official who has confirmed North Carolina special teams coach John Lovett will be introduced as the Canes' next defensive coordinator later this week.
Lovett, 58, comes to the Canes a lot like the last guy who was here running the defense -- with a lot of experience. He's played the role of defensive coordinator at four different schools: Bowling Green, Clemson, Auburn and Maine. Most of his experience comes coaching the secondary and outside linebackers.
My question to you is: Do you like it? Lovett? Or hate it?
Lovett began his coaching career at the high school level in 1976 and has coached as a position coach with the New York Jets, Brown University, UNLV, Cincinnati and at Mississippi from 1995-98, where he first coached under Tommy Tuberville. Lovett eventually left Mississippi with Tuberville for Auburn where he had some success against Steve Spurrier and the Florida Gators. In 2001, Lovett's defense shutdown then No. 1 ranked Florida, holding them 20 points, -36 yards rushing and 328 yards of total offense (all season lows) in an Auburn upset. He then moved onto Clemson where the Tigers became one of the best defenses in the country. In 2002, his defense intercepted 21 passes. He then moved onto Bowling Green before joining Davis' staff as special teams coach.
When I asked one UM official to describe his play-calling I was told "very aggressive." Miami was 28th in total defense (317.46) and 56th in scoring defense (24.1) last season. But they've got a lot of young, talented players including All-ACC Defensive Freshman of the Year Sean Spence at linebacker.
> To be honest, I don't know how to feel about Lovett. To me he looks a lot like Bill Young -- experienced, been around the block and to a lot of different places. Young was just at better schools like USC, Ohio State and Oklahoma. The fact he is also can help with the special teams is a plus (he was named a finalist for Special Teams Coach of the Year0. He certainly looks like a hard worker, too. He played at C.W. Post College and made the team as a walk-on before elevating himself to co-captain by the time he was a senior.
> On a basketball note, Jack McClinton has been named ACC Player of the Week. He had 32 points in a win over Wake Forest and a season-high 34 in the overtime loss at Duke. It is the third time he's been named the conference's player of the week and the first time this season.