Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Brent Dearmon leaving KU football to become O.C. at MTSU

Kansas offensive coordinator Brent Dearmon turns over his shoulder as he looks down the sideline during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019 at Memorial Stadium.

Kansas offensive coordinator Brent Dearmon turns over his shoulder as he looks down the sideline during the fourth quarter on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019 at Memorial Stadium.


A little more than two years into his time as the head football coach at Kansas, Les Miles will have to find his fourth offensive coordinator.

Brent Dearmon, the Jayhawks’ coordinator and quarterbacks coach since the midway point of the 2019 season, is expected to be named the next O.C. at Middle Tennessee State, ESPN reported Wednesday night.

Dearmon confirmed the news to the Journal-World.

Miles selected Dearmon to take over the offense six games into the head coach’s first season at KU, when Miles fired coordinator Les Koenning during a bye week in early October.

The Jayhawks, after a 2-4 start, went on to go 1-5 the rest of the season after the change, but scored at least 31 points — a total they only reached in one of their first six games — three times down the stretch, under Dearmon

KU’s offense struggled throughout the winless 2020 season, though, never taking off as the Jayhawks dealt with problems at quarterback and along the offensive line, as well as opt outs.

In what ended up being Dearmon’s last year as KU’s coordinator, the Jayhawks never scored more than 23 points and averaged just 15.8 points (123rd out of 126 FBS teams) and 259.2 yards per game (126th).

When Miles took over the program late in 2018, he initially hired Chip Lindsey as offensive coordinator. However, Lindsey left a little more than a month after taking the job in order to become the head coach at Troy.

Lindsey’s departure led to Miles hiring Koenning. But KU’s offense sputtered out of the gate in 2019, and then failed to build upon a promising showing in a 48-24 win at Boston College, and Koenning’s tenure ended six games after it began.

First hired by Miles as a senior offensive analyst, Dearmon was promoted to replace Koenning. At the time, Dearmon signed a contract that was guaranteed through the 2021 season. Language in the contract stated KU Athletics would be owed a $500,000 buyout if another program were to hire Dearmon away.

After 15 games as the O.C. at KU in the Big 12, Dearmon is leaving for the same job at MTSU in Conference USA.

Dearmon will move on to work for head coach Rick Stockstill, who has the led the Blue Raiders for 15 years. MTSU went 3-6 in 2020. Stockstill’s former O.C., Tony Franklin, retired at the beginning of January.

As Miles again searches for an offensive coordinator, KU football is set to begin offseason conditioning workouts next week. KU has not yet announced when spring football practices will begin.

None by Adam Rittenberg


Kay Jensen 1 year, 10 months ago

This is insane now. MTSU?! No shade, but that is messed up. They were 3-6 last year.

Bryan Schmiedeler 1 year, 10 months ago

I am worried that there is more to this story than we know. Why would he eave KU for the same position at a similar program? Something we do not know yet?

Dale Rogers 1 year, 10 months ago

I am stunned. I thought we had him locked up and I was looking forward to seeing what he can do with this team this next season. With signing day next week how many recruits do we lose? This almost feels like being stabbed in the back. I wonder what happened? I agree there has to be more to this story than we know.

Brian Wilson 1 year, 10 months ago

I am stunned as well. Matt wrote about lack of continuity with the players. IMO, at this point, it may be the coaching. You can't teach the players differently every year and expect that they will mesh and play together when they are all confused as to what they've learned and who said what. We were supposed to keep Dearmon for at least a few years anyways. So I can only guess that Deamon's system was not going to work with the talent we have on the line.

Frustrated, and getting desperate, but may we should invent our own system like some kind of a hybrid single wing offense or something. The single wing is designed for a weak line and a less talented team - we should use it. Go to 3pt, and stop backing up to block because we can't protect. Play a little more of a smash mouth game using the wing which is hard to predict and to figure out, and then add in and set up the pass - option, play action, and over the top. Seems like we can't win trying to do what everyone else is doing.

Andy Godwin 1 year, 10 months ago

“ In what ended up being Dearmon’s last year as KU’s coordinator, the Jayhawks never scored more than 23 points and averaged just 15.8 points (123rd out of 126 FBS teams) and 259.2 yards per game (126th).” Hard to find a OC who could do much worse for the Crimson and Blue.

Dale Rogers 1 year, 10 months ago

Have to wonder how much of that had to do with an ineffective o-line and a rookie QB? Look at Dearmon's performance at the end of the prior season with a decent o'line and Carter Stanley taking the snaps.

Layne Pierce 1 year, 10 months ago

It looks very bad, and it certainly smells like more than just a job change.

The record says that Dearman was not as good as we would like to believe. Surely we can get someone almost as good if not better.

I mean if a guy jumps our ship for the American Conference 3-5 team, then there must be somebody from another losing school who just wants a change of scenery.


Mike Hart 1 year, 10 months ago

You know... Beaty used to get blasted for his coaches leaving like a revolving door. Dearmon?!? He was Miles’ GUY! Now if we can just get rid of Eliot as DC ... all good. For those counting next OC will be the FOURTH one announced since Mikes took over. And what.. 3 OL coaches? Great chemistry. Hope Mikes quits next .. New blood, please

Dirk Medema 1 year, 10 months ago

Wasn’t this a criticism of the previous program? At least we didn’t pay him to walk around all season. Some of the NC luster seems to be wearing off.

Brett McCabe 1 year, 10 months ago

Wow. Hard to even try and figure out what happened here or why. Any guess is as good as mine.

Again, the kids who committed after being recruited by Dearmon are the ones who pay the price for trusting a coach’s promises.

Not a good development for this program. At this point, I think just promoting the WR coach is probably the best route. Who are you going to hire from the outside?

We need some continuity and some damage control.

Robert Brock 1 year, 10 months ago

Well, Bye! Coaches come and go. Dearmon wasn’t doing well and feared getting fired. There are loads of coaches available at this time.

Mike Barnhart 1 year, 10 months ago

At this point, for sanities sake, I’m only loosely following this team. But on top of this depressing news, didn’t we just lose about 15 transfers to COVID portal while picking up ONE??? Is this program any better now than it was 5 years ago?

Jerry Walker 1 year, 10 months ago

With no malice intended...good riddance.

Even discounting his problems because of the troubles with the OL and QB...he was a flop. He showed no innovation or spark for an under-manned offense.

David Robinett 1 year, 10 months ago

Well crap. He seemed to be leading the recruiting efforts in Alabama and Georgia that were paying off.

Doug Roberts 1 year, 10 months ago



Oh well, as the fat lady at the DMV says, "NEEEXT!"

David McNickle 1 year, 10 months ago

What's that do to the recruiting class that Dearmon brought in? Do we feel like we're in a better place than 3 yrs ago?

Brian Leiker 1 year, 10 months ago

This is an issue with Miles. This sucks because our "Football AD" won't have the balls to kick him out the door. Are we finished with the " we need to hire a proven BCS winner to turn around our program"? Let's roll the dice on a young energetic coach who has won at the lower levels. The game has passed our old balls coaches by.

Brian Wilson 1 year, 10 months ago

Firing the coach in this case is not the answer. Miles is a good coach he just needs some continuity and a good scheme that fits the talent he has. It's the coordinator's job to put a scheme together that fits the personnel and talent. You can't put square pegs in rounds holes, you have to machine the holes so the square pegs will fit.

Karen Mansfield-Stewart 1 year, 10 months ago

This is a quick kick to the footballs. Was hoping he'd grow, develop and be our next HC.

Skyler Owen 1 year, 10 months ago

Ed Wariner is the leading candidate to replace him from what im hearing...

Skyler Owen 1 year, 10 months ago

None by Adam Rittenberg

Charlie Gaughn 1 year, 10 months ago

Regardless of who they hire, the lack of continuity within the program is very disturbing. It's time for the AD to come clean with donors and fans and explain what's going on. I've stood by Miles throughout knowing that to turn this program around you need to recruit freshmen and take your lumps in the early years. Now going into year three we're suddenly looking for an OC just a few weeks before spring practice is to begin. Obviously any remaining recruits that Dearmon was in charge of won't be coming to KU.

This was the year I though we might start to see improvement and even be competitive in a few games. I hold out little hope of that happening now.

Doug Roberts 1 year, 10 months ago

Skyler, that tweet doesn't seem to imply at all that Warriner is even a candidate, just that he was a coordinator here before. Any other sources?

Skyler Owen 1 year, 10 months ago

His name is being mentioned and I have heard rumors he is interested...nothing credible i can link but thats the word on the street...I think KU is wanting someone with more QB coaching experience so it will be interesting to see how this plays out.

Doug Roberts 1 year, 10 months ago

I'd be curious to know how many OCs we've had in the past 10 years. Anybody know? I'll put the over/under at 10, and I'll take the over.

Tim Orel 1 year, 10 months ago

Wasn't this the guy who had the wide-open offense that was supposed to make KU impossible to stop? Who would pretty much be the one to get KU into the next great wave of innovation for college offenses? I might have his potential confused with one of the other KU OC's during Les Miles' tenure - there have been so many. Anyway, offensive lines and QB's included, it just didn't seem like KU was making progress. Now he's going to a program that at least won three more games than KU last year.

Allin Herring 1 year, 10 months ago

I was not impressed with his offense. We will not,mi@ this small school guy gojng back down where he belongs

Commenting has been disabled for this item.