Former Minnesota head coach Tracy Claeys is headed to Washington State to join Mike Leach’s staff as defensive coordinator. A report surfaced on Monday evening about the hire.
This will be the first position Claeys has taken since being fired as the head coach of the Golden Gophers at the end of the 2016 season. Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune first had the report.
— JoeChristensen (@JoeCStrib) January 8, 2018
Claeys spent a majority of his career serving as the defensive coordinator under Jerry Kill. Together, the two had stops had Southern Illinois, Northern Illinois and Minnesota.
From 2011 through 2015, Claeys served as the defensive coordinator for Golden Gophers but was forced into the head coaching job when Kill decided to retire midway through the season. He was named the full-time head coach for the 2016 season, leading Minnesota to a 9-4 record.
But Claeys was fired at the conclusion of the season due to a player boycott prior to the team’s appearance in the Holiday Bowl against Washington State. The boycott was in response to multiple suspensions to players allegedly involved in a sexual assault that occurred earlier in the year.
Washington State was searching for a new defensive coordinator after Alex Grinch accepted a position with Ohio State, becoming the 10th member on the staff.
Claeys was 11-8 overall as a head coach.