The Times Free Press has confirmed through multiple sources that University of Tennessee at Chattanooga running backs coach Shawn Bryson will be retained for new head football coach Tom Arth's staff.
Current director of football operations Kadeem Wise, who played for the Mocs from 2010 to 2013, also has been retained.
In each of Bryson's two seasons with the Mocs, running back Derrick Craine rushed for more than 1,000 yards — with two of the top seven single-game rushing performances in school history — including a school-record 1,251 in 2015. As a senior this past season, Craine missed two games due to injury, sat out the fourth quarter in all but three others and still had 1,083 yards and 12 touchdowns.
In Craine's absence, Richardre Bagley showed he could do more than catch passes out of the backfield, rushing for 315 yards and four touchdowns in wins against Virginia Military Institute and Western Carolina. He finished his junior season with 593 yards and five touchdowns on the ground, as well as 24 catches for 177 yards and four scores.
As a team, the Mocs have averaged 224.1 rushing yards during Bryson's time.
Several members of Arth's staff attended the UTC women's basketball team's home game against Notre Dame on Tuesday, including offensive coordinator Justin Rascati and defensive coordinator Brandon Staley. Also at the game was Scott Aligo, who served as Arth's director of player personnel in 2016 at John Carroll University and could be a part of the new staff.
Aligo has twice worked on NFL staffs, spending time as a player personnel assistant with the Kansas City Chiefs (2005-09) and as a player personnel associate with the Cleveland Browns (2014-16). He has been at the collegiate level with stints at NCAA Division II member Washburn University, as well as Football Championship Subdivision member Northern Colorado and Football Bowl Subdivision members Oklahoma State and Texas A&M.
Another name that has come up is DeMarcus Covington, who could be added as an assistant, sources said. Covington is currently the co-defensive coordinator and defensive line coach at Eastern Illinois, and he previously worked at Alabama-Birmingham in 2012, Ole Miss for two seasons and Tennessee-Martin for one.
A native of Birmingham, Ala., Covington played wide receiver for Southern Conference member Samford and was a three-year starter, catching 62 passes for 586 yards and two scores from 2007 to '11.
Contact Gene Henley at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @genehenleytfp.