Ask every head coach in the country who the most important hire for him to make is, and you'll hear the program's strength coach more than any other position on staff.
Earlier this week, the New York Times did a special piece on the role of college football's strength coaches, including some big names in the profession and the resounding message that the article gets across is that being a program's strength coach means so much more than leading the team in the weight room and coming up with workouts.
"We actually probably coach attitude, body language, responsibility, things like that, more than the actual strength and conditioning portion of it," Washing State head strength coach Jason Loscalzo explains in the piece.
"Those things, if you don't have that foundation, it doesn't matter how strong the players get or how good shape they're in."
That right there is a great summary of what strength coaches are asked to do. In a lot of cases, the strength staffs get to know the players on a level that that the full-time coaches don't even get to.
They're also an extension of the head coach, making sure to instill the culture that the head coach is striving to create, which is something that Tom Herman touched on regarding his strength coach Yancy McKnight.
"What makes Yancy so special is he is 100% an extension of me and my voice and it's very, very clear that every time he speaks to the team, it's me talking."