Boise State Football

How Bryan Harsin’s Boise State football coaching staff has evolved during his tenure

Bryan Harsin reacts to Eliah Drinkwitz getting head coach job

Former Boise State offensive coordinator Eliah Drinkwitz was named head coach at Appalachian State on Thursday. Boise State coach Bryan Harsin was asked about the news.
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Former Boise State offensive coordinator Eliah Drinkwitz was named head coach at Appalachian State on Thursday. Boise State coach Bryan Harsin was asked about the news.

Boise State football coach Bryan Harsin hired his 20th on-field assistant coach earlier this month as he begins his sixth year as the Broncos’ head coach. The chart below shows how those jobs have changed hands.

The Broncos’ offensive staff has enjoyed a reasonable amount of stability. The only position group that has had more than two coaches is the quarterbacks, where Harsin’s first two hires left for richer programs and eventually were named head coaches at Western Kentucky (Mike Sanford) and Appalachian State (Eliah Drinkwitz). Zak Hill is in his fourth year in that role.

[Related: Boise State assistant coach salaries for 2018]

On defense, however, turnover has been a bigger issue. The Broncos are on their fourth cornerbacks coach and third defensive line coach. That group has been held together by coordinator Andy Avalos, the only member of the 2014 defensive coaching staff who is still with the program. Avalos’ linebackers are the only position group not to experience a coaching change in Harsin’s tenure.

Special teams will undergo changes in 2019 with longtime running backs coach Lee Marks and new outside linebackers coach Jeff Schmedding replacing Kent Riddle as special teams coordinator. Riddle, still the tight ends coach, is the only member of the original offensive staff still with the Broncos, and he coordinated the special teams for five years.

PositionOriginal coachSecond coachThird coachFourth coach
Offensive coordinator/QBsMike Sanford Eliah Drinkwitz (2015)Zak Hill (2016)*

Defensive coordinatorMarcel YatesAndy Avalos (2016)



Wide receiversJunior AdamsEric Kiesau (2017)



Tight endsEliah Drinkwitz

Kent Riddle (2015)





Offensive lineScott HuffBrad Bedell (2017)



Running backsKent RiddleLee Marks (2015)



Defensive lineSteve CaldwellChad Kauha’aha’a (2018)Spencer Danielson (2019)

LinebackersAndy Avalos





CornerbacksJulius Brown^Ashley Ambrose (2016)^Jeff Popovich (2018)Jalil Brown (2019)
SafetiesMarcel YatesGabe Franklin (2016)



Special teams

Kent Riddle

Jeff Schmedding and Lee Marks (2019)




STUDs/outside LBsSpencer Danielson (2018) #Jeff Schmedding (2019)



* Zak Hill and Scott Huff were co-coordinators in 2016 with Bryan Harsin heavily involved; Hill became the primary playcaller in 2017

^ Brown was the defensive backs coach in 2014 but Yates eventually absorbed the safeties into his duties. Ambrose also was listed as defensive backs coach during his tenure.

# Danielson was added as STUDs coach in 2018 when the NCAA allowed a 10th on-field assistant

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