Monday August 4, 2008 (Offensive Line Coaches)
"Deserving Credit" is a series highlighting several of the terrific young and/or lesser known coaches throughout the country that based on their hard work are worthy of national recognition.
Blake Miller (Rice University): Blake Miller enters his 2nd season coaching the offensive line unit at Rice University. Having experienced tremendous success earlier in his career at Northwestern State and Texas State, Miller has developed into one of the best offensive line coaches throughout the country. During his nine years in the Southland Conference, Miller coached 11 different players to All-Southland Conference honors including 3 All-Americans. Both offensive units at Northwestern State and Texas State broke numerous records respectively while Miller coached the offensive line. With a coordinator's personality, Miller understands the run game as well as any coach. A graduate of LSU, don't be surprised if Miller ends up on Les Miles' staff sometime down the road. In the meantime, looks for the Rice Owls to improve offensively across the board in Miller's 2nd season.
Chris Malone (James Madison University): Former Virginia Tech offensive lineman, Chris Malone, coaches the offensive line at James Madison University. Last season, the offensive line unit at JMU led the nation in fewest sacks allowed (6). Sure, the quarterbacks deserve some of the credit here as well, but only 6 sacks in 12 games - Wow! Perhaps more impressive is that JMU rushed for 265 yards per game last season behind Malone's offensive line. When you watch his front five, not only do these guys put a hat on a hat, but they are physical and fundamentally sound. Earlier in his career, Malone coached at Fork Union Military Academy before accepting the offensive graduate assistant position at Virginia Tech. After leaving Virginia Tech, Malone then went on the coach the offensive line at UMASS and VMI before landing the job at James Madison. It seems like head coach Mickey Matthews made a great hire with this one.
Wide Receiver Coaches - Coming Wednesday!