Iowa CITY, Iowa - - Phil Parker, defensive backfield coach at the University of Iowa the past 13 seasons, has been named defensive coordinator. In addition, Darrell Wilson and Reese Morgan will take over new assignments on the Hawkeye coaching staff. The announcement was made Tuesday by head football coach Kirk Ferentz.
Wilson, who has served as Iowa’s linebackers coach for the past 10 seasons, will coach the defensive secondary. Reese Morgan, a member of the staff for the past 12 seasons, will move from coaching the offensive line to the defensive line.
“Phil, Darrell and Reese have all done an outstanding job in our program for a significant period of time,” said Ferentz. “I am confident they will have a very positive effect on our team as we transition forward.”
Parker, a member of the Iowa staff since Ferentz took over as head coach, replaces Norm Parker, who retired following this past season. Phil Parker was named by Rivals.com in March, 2011, as a first team member of its College Football Assistant Coach Dream Team.
Over the past four seasons, Iowa is tied for fifth in the nation with 72 interceptions. Iowa’s secondary in 2011 was led by senior Shaun Prater, who earned first team all-Big Ten honors for the second straight season, and junior Micah Hyde, who earned second team honors.
Iowa was second in the Big Ten in pass efficiency defense (115.1) and interceptions (19) in 2010. Iowa tied for 11th in the nation in interceptions, returning four thefts for touchdowns. Defensive backs Tyler Sash and Shaun Prater were both named first team all-Big Ten, while Brett Greenwood earned second team honors and Micah Hyde was honorable mention.
Iowa, in 2009, ranked third in the nation in pass efficiency defense and fourth in pass defense while leading the Big Ten in both categories. The Hawkeyes tied for fifth nationally with 21 interceptions while ranking eighth in scoring defense and 10th in total defense. In 2008, Iowa ranked fourth in the nation while tying a school record with 23 interceptions. The Hawkeyes led the Big Ten and ranked fifth nationally in pass efficiency defense (98.3) and scoring defense (13.0).
Wilson has coached all the linebacker positions and special teams after working with special teams and outside linebackers in his first six seasons with the Hawkeyes. Wilson was named by Rivals.com in February, 2011 as one of the top 25 recruiters in the nation.
Iowa, in 2010, ranked fifth in the nation in total defense (332.1), sixth in rushing defense (101.5) and seventh in scoring defense (17.0). Iowa also tied for seventh in turnover margin (+13) and 11th in interceptions (19). Iowa’s special teams ranked sixth nationally in punt coverage (3.9) and 12th in kickoff returns (25.3).
Morgan has served as Iowa’s offensive line coach the last nine seasons after spending the first three as tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator.
Among the reasons for Iowa’s recent success has been the play of Iowa’s offensive line, working under the direction of Morgan. With two new starters in 2011, the Hawkeye offensive line led the way as Iowa’s offense featured a 3,000-yard passing quarterback and a running back and wide receiver who each gained over 1,300 yards.
Junior tackle Riley Reiff earned first team all-Big Ten honors in 2011, along with earning All-America recognition from several media outlets. In addition, senior guard Adam Gettis was named second team all-Big Ten and junior center James Ferentz and senior tackle Markus Zusevics earned honorable mention recognition.
Iowa’s offensive line featured three first-year starters in 2010. Still, the Hawkeyes ranked among the national leaders in fewest penalties, fewest penalty yards, QB sacks allowed and fewest turnovers. Senior guard Julian Vandervelde and sophomore tackle Riley Reiff earned second team all-Big Ten honors. Vandervelde was selected in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft by Philadelphia. Iowa has had at least one offensive lineman selected in seven of the last nine NFL drafts.
In 2009, tackle Bryan Bulaga was named Offensive Lineman of the Year in the Big Ten, earning first team all-conference honors. Bulaga declared for the NFL Draft following his junior season in 2009 and was the 23rd player selected in the 2010 NFL Draft when he was taken by the Green Bay Packers. Bulaga earned a starting spot at right tackle for the Super Bowl champion Packers as a rookie. He is the youngest player ever to start in the Super Bowl.
Iowa, in 2008, ranked third in the Big Ten and 26th nationally in rushing yards per game (188.7). Iowa featured running back Shonn Greene, who earned the Doak Walker Award as the top running back in the nation. Greene was the only running back in the nation to rush for over 100 yards in every game during the 2008 season.
As tight ends coach in 2002, Morgan coached tight end Dallas Clark to consensus All-America honors. Clark was also named winner of the John Mackey Award, which goes annually to college football’s top tight end. Clark was named to at least seven first team All-America teams. Clark has earned a Super Bowl championship with the Indianapolis Colts and earned all-Pro honors in 2009.
Iowa begins spring practice March 24. The Hawkeyes will hold their final open practice/scrimmage of the spring on Saturday, April 14 in Kinnick Stadium.