West Virginia shifts defensive staff after Koenning’s exit

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia coach Neal Brown has shifted responsibilities on his staff after the exit of defensive coordinator Vic Koenning.

Brown announced Monday that defensive line coach Jordan Lesley will oversee the front of the unit, and defensive backs coach Jahmile Addae will handle the back of the defense.

Brown also said defensive analyst Jeff Casteel will now coach the outside linebackers, and outside linebackers coach Dontae Wright will oversee the safeties. Jeff Koonz will continue in his roles as inside linebackers coach and special teams coordinator.

Casteel, who was rehired at West Virginia in March, was the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at Nevada for the past three years. He served as defensive coordinator and other roles during his stint at West Virginia from 2001-11. He also was the defensive coordinator at Arizona from 2012-16.

West Virginia announced last week that it parted ways with Koenning a month after a player alleged the assistant coach made a series of insensitive remarks, including against Hispanics.

Brown made no reference to Koenning in Monday’s news release, saying he is using a committee approach on defense “given the timing and unique circumstances surrounding the (coronavirus) pandemic.”

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