published Saturday, January 25th, 2014

Vandy's Mason announces seven hires

Derek Mason addresses the media as he is introduced as the new Vanderbilt football coach during an NCAA football news conference in Nashville in this Jan. 18, 2014, file photo.
Derek Mason addresses the media as he is introduced as the new Vanderbilt football coach during an NCAA football news conference in Nashville in this Jan. 18, 2014, file photo.
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

New Vanderbilt football coach Derek Mason announced seven assistant coaches Friday, including Karl Dorrell as his offensive coordinator and David Kotulski as his defensive coordinator.

Dorrell was UCLA's head coach from 2003 to '07, guiding the Bruins to a 35-27 record that included a 10-win season in 2005 and a 13-9 upset of rival Southern Cal in '06. He has spent the past six seasons as an offensive assistant in the NFL and was quarterbacks coach for the Houston Texans each of the past two years.

Kotulski has spent the past two seasons as inside linebackers coach at Stanford, where he worked under Mason, the defensive coordinator.

Also introduced Friday were Charles Bankins (running backs/special teams), Gerry Gdowski (receivers), Keven Lightner (offensive line), Kenwick Thompson (outside linebackers) and Vavae Tata (defensive line). Bankins is the only assistant who worked the past three seasons for former Commodores coach James Franklin.

"These coaches bring decades of experience and proven success to Vanderbilt," Mason said in a released statement. "Each of these coaches are quality individuals and are the type of men you want to be associated with. I can assure that the young men we attract as Vanderbilt student-athletes will receive tremendous coaching on the field and be guided by great mentors off the field."

Mason still has two vacancies to fill on his inaugural Vanderbilt staff.

Georgia hires Sherrer

Georgia on Friday confirmed the hiring of South Alabama defensive coordinator Kevin Sherrer.

Sherrer will be on the defensive staff of new Bulldogs coordinator Jeremy Pruitt, though his role is not yet known. South Alabama ranked second among Sun Belt Conference teams this past season in total defense (384.3 yards per game) and scoring defense (25.2 points per game).

"He has worked with Jeremy Pruitt at both Hoover (Ala.) High School and Alabama, and they already have a great relationship that will translate well to the field," Georgia head coach Mark Richt said in a release. "Kevin is an exceptional football coach who cares about his players and is going to be a tremendous asset to our program."

Said Sherrer: "Georgia is a great state that I've recruited, and I know the type of players and the coaches in this area. I'm looking forward to doing my part to make Georgia a championship team."

Contact David Paschall at dpaschall@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6524.

about David Paschall...

David Paschall is a sports writer for the Times Free Press. He started at the Chattanooga Free Press in 1990 and was part of the Times Free Press when the paper started in 1999. David covers University of Georgia football, as well as SEC football recruiting, SEC basketball, Chattanooga Lookouts baseball and other sports stories. He is a Chattanooga native and graduate of the Baylor School and Auburn University. David has received numerous honors for ...

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