HUNTINGTON — Sources say the majority of Marshall’s coaching staff will not return to the Thundering Herd sideline next season after meeting with new head coach Charles Huff.
Huff, who was introduced in a virtual news conference earlier in the day, spent much of Tuesday evening meeting with coaches from the 2020 staff of former Marshall head coach Doc Holliday.
According to sources, the lone holdover from the staff is offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Tim Cramsey, who has spent three seasons with the Herd and was responsible for the development of freshman quarterback Grant Wells, who was named Conference USA Freshman of the Year and an All-Conference USA first team selection.
It is not immediately known what position Cramsey will have on the 2021 staff.
Wells was an FWAA Freshman All-American candidate late in the season before faltering late.
Even with a defensive-based plan to win under Holliday, Marshall’s offense averaged 28.5 points per game. However, the Herd’s offensive totals dipped severely in the final three games of the season as Wells struggled. Marshall scored just 23 points total in those contests — all losses.
Still, the return of Wells as an experienced starter with tremendous upside is a huge boost for Huff and Cramsey moving forward.
Speaking on logistics during his introductory news conference Tuesday, Huff said he wanted to incorporate principles of the run-pass option (RPO) game while adding a pro-style dropback attack because it is hard to defend.
“It produces a fun brand of football for players and fans,” Huff said.
While Cramsey will return, no one from the 2020 Marshall defensive staff will, which is a surprise due to the group finishing No. 1 in the nation in scoring defense.
In securing Marshall’s head coaching position, Huff was chosen over former Marshall defensive coordinator Brad Lambert, who was one of two other finalists for the job. Lambert reportedly has accepted a similar position at Purdue since Huff’s hiring.
Marshall co-defensive coordinator and defensive line coach J.C. Price took to social media to send a message to Herd fans. Price, who was with the Herd for nine seasons, was one of the Herd’s longest-tenured and most well-received coaches within the community.
“It’s been a great 9 years … . Huntington is a great town,” Price’s message said. “Enjoyed my time at Marshall. Looking forward to next opportunity.”
Cornell Brown, who joined Price — his former teammate at Virginia Tech — on the staff in 2017, also put out a message saying he’s open to opportunities with some of his favorite quotes inside a graphic with his credentials.
“My past has prepared me to teach the future,” Brown’s graphic said. “My daily desire is to become a mentor in the lives of young adults who seek to develop themselves to their fullest potential as men.”
In addition to Price and Brown, other defensive coaches who were let go include linebacker coach and special teams coordinator Jordon Hankins and cornerbacks coach Patrick Bastien. Both were in their first year with the Herd in 2020.
On the offensive side of the ball, running backs coach Pepe Pearson, who has been with the team for five years, and Dallas Baker (four years) will not return, along with Kyle Segler, the team’s tight ends and co-special teams coordinator, who spent two years in Huntington.
One coach whose status is not yet clear is offensive line coach Greg Adkins, who is dealing with a death in the family and is away from the team at this time.
After meeting with the staff, Huff had a team meeting with players Tuesday night.