Notre Dame associate head coach Mike Denbrock is expected to leave the staff to become the offensive coordinator at Cincinnati, Sports Illustrated‘s Pete Thamel reported late Tuesday night.
SOURCE: Notre Dame offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock expected to be the next offensive coordinator at Cincinnati.
— Pete Thamel (@SIPeteThamel) December 28, 2016
Wednesday 7AM Update: Sources tell FootballScoop that Denbrock has not decided to accept another position at this time. Will update as more is clear.
Denbrock’s departure will complete a total makeover of the senior membership of Brian Kelly’s staff following the Irish’s 4-8 season. Mike Elko has already been hired as defensive coordinator, and offensive coordinator Mike Sanford accepted the head coaching job at Western Kentucky earlier this month.
Denbrock’s departure will be felt in South Bend. Denbrock and Kelly’s working relationship dates back nearly 30 years; the two first worked together as graduate assistants at Grand Valley State in 1987. Denbrock was later the offensive coordinator at Grand Valley State under head coach Kelly from 1992-95, then switched to become Kelly’s defensive coordinator from 1996-98. Denbrock left for the Arena Football League and FBS but reunited with Kelly on his original Notre Dame staff as tight ends coach in 2010. Denbrock worked his way to become Notre Dame’s offensive coordinator in 2014 and transitioned to associate head coach and wide receivers coach in 2015-16.
A switch to Cincinnati will give Denbrock autonomy over an offense that needs retooling. The Bearcats closed 2016 ranked 101st nationally in yards per play and 121st in scoring.
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