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LSU Lands Chavis As Defensive Coordinator

LSU is going to have a new defensive coordinator in 2009… and his name is John Chavis.’s Chris Low is reporting that Chavis, fired at Tennessee to make room for Monte Kiffin, will be joining Les Miles’ staff and will be paid more than $500,000 annually to do so.

That’s an upgrade over the $340,000 Chavis made at his alma mater last year.  Of course, as we reported last week, his replacement at UT will make more than $1 million per year.

Chavis might not be making Kiffin money, but he did have a Top 10 defense nationally last year in Knoxville AND he’s going to be inheriting a lot more talent in Baton Rouge than he’s leaving in the Smokies. 

Advantage: Chavis.

It appears that current LSU co-coordinator Doug Mallory will accept the defensive coordinator slot at New Mexico, but that deal has been dragging on for a week now. 

His partner in coordination, Bradley Dale Peveto, has already accepted the position of head coach at Northwestern State.

It’s anyone’s guess as to how this news will affect the LSU team in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.  They could either be disappointed and sleepwalk through the game, they could “win one for the coordinators,” or they could just continue to underachieve as they have for much of the year.

Back to Chavis, in nine of his 14 years as Tennessee’s defensive coordinator, the Vols ranked either first, second or third in the SEC.

He was also believed to be the top choice of Clemson’s Dabo Sweeney, but a couple of things surely played on Chavis’ mind:

1)  He’ll get that aforementioned top-notch talent

2)  He already knows the SEC, it’s personnel, it’s schemes, etc.  He admitted as much in a radio interview last week.

There is also a chance that the man known as “Chief” will be bringing along former Tennessee assistants Dan Brooks or Steve Caldwell.


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