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Football Dollars & Sense: Penn State Adds to its Growing Support Staff

by on March 26, 2017 11:00 PM

James Franklin has recently added an offensive analyst and a recruiting coordinator to his growing support staff.

Former Alderson Broaddus head football coach Kirk Campbell was named to the Penn State staff as an offensive analyst.

And E.J. Barthel, who worked in a recruiting capacity at both Rutgers and Temple over the past two years, was hired as a recruiting coordinator.

They join a Nittany Lion coaching support staff that since December has added, at last count, eight new support staffers -- counting new grad assistants, quality control assistants, consultants and recruiting assistants.

(The GA spots are not new; they replace Franklin's four graduate assistants from last season, each of whom moved on to a full-time position, a feather in Franklin's developmental cap.)

Meantime, though, the core full-time assistant coaching staff under Franklin has remained intact one year after the Penn State head coach brought in three new assistants after the 2015 season, including offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead.

We know how those additions turned out: Penn State went 11-3, won the Big Ten and finished the 2016 season ranked No. 7.

BARTHEL AND CAMPBELL

Barthel played at Rutgers and UMass, and coached at both Rutgers and Temple. His Twitter bio lists his position as "Penn State Football Recruiting Coordinator," with a big Nittany Lion logo as his profile backdrop. However, he still lists Philadelphia as his home, with a link to owlsports.com (update: the link is now to Penn State's football page on GoPSUSports.com). He was Rutgers' recruiting coordinator from March 2015 through January 2016, when he left for a similar position at Temple. To follow Barthel on Twitter: @CoachEJbarthel

Andy Frank, who has been with Franklin since 2011 at Vanderbilt, heads Penn State's recruiting efforts and is the team's director of player personnel.

Campbell had spent the 2012-16 seasons as the offensive coordinator at AB, a Division II school in Philippi, West Virginia, located about 40 miles south of Morgantown. Under Campbell's direction as O-coordinator, assistant head coach and the quarterbacks coach, the Battlers' offense averaged 34 points per game on their way to a 9-2 record last season.

Campbell never coached a game as AB's head coach. When Dennis Creehan left Alderson Broaddus in late November 2016, Campbell was named AB's head coach. He was in that position through earlier this month, when he joined Penn State in his new role.

A native of suburban Pittsburgh, Campbell was a wide receiver, safety and punt returner for West Allegheny High School when it won a PA state title. He played collegiately at Mercyhurst. His fiancee is a graphic designer for Penn State athletics, focusing primarily on the design of recruiting materials. To follow Campbell on Twitter: @KirkCampbellPSU

THE COST OF DOING BUSINESS

Adding football support staff is not cheap.

According to annual financial reports Penn State athletics has filed with the NCAA and the U.S. Department of Education (necessary to comply with Title IX statutes), Penn State's costs for football support salaries and benefits have increased almost over five-fold since 2012-13.

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Here's a breakdown, for both football support staff salaries and benefits and salaries/benefits/bonuses for the 10-person full-time coaching staff (Franklin and nine assistants). Coaching salaries were not delineated in the 2012-13 reports:

2012-13 — Coaching staff: n/a; support staff: $683,621

2013-14 — Coaching staff: $10,602,752; support staff: $2,869,294

2014-15 — Coaching staff: $11,226,373; support staff: $4,062,854

2015-16 — Coaching staff: $11,327,633; support staff: $3,663,890

PSU: GALIANO A DEFENSIVE CONSULTANT

A few weeks ago, Penn State also hired former Rutgers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers assistant Phil Galiano as a defensive consultant. Galiano had three separate stints at Rutgers, most recently as a special teams and tight ends coach. He spent 2012-2013 in the NFL as the Bucs' special teams coach, when former Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano left Rutgers to be the head coach in Tampa Bay. (Schiano, fired by Tampa Bay after the 2013 season, is in his second year as associate head and co-defensive coordinator at Ohio State.)

In his various times at Rutgers, Galiano was also director of recruiting operations and coached the defensive line and linebackers. A native of Norristown, he was a three-year starter at safety for Shippensburg. To follow Galiano on Twitter: @Coach_Galiano

Galiano joins Sam Williams, a former Rutgers colleague, on the Penn State staff. Williams was a grad assistant at Rutgers in 2013 (special teams) and 2014 (offensive line). After the 2014 season at Rutgers, Galiano was promoted from recruiting coordinator to special teams/tight ends coach.

That's when Williams left Rutgers for Penn State. Williams joined the Nittany Lions in March 2015 as "special teams recruiting assistant for quality control." Williams was an offensive quality control assistant for Franklin at Vanderbilt in 2012. Williams remains on the Penn State staff.

Penn State last had a consultant on its football staff in 2015, when former New Orleans Saints head coach and standout NFL linebacker Jim Haslett was a consultant at PSU for a season. He left last year to be a linebackers coach for the Cincinnati Bengals in the NFL.

TURNING THE TIDE

Consultants are nothing new. At Alabama last year, former USC and Washington head coach Steve Sarkisian served as a non-coaching consultant. Then, when Tide offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin left the Alabama staff to become head coach at FAU after Alabama defeated Washington (small world, huh?) in the Peach Bowl — a semifinal game of the College Football Playoffs — Sarkisian was named to a fulltime assistant's slot. That lasted just one game, however. Sarkisian left Alabama in February 2017 to be the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons.

In turn, Sarkisian was replaced by another consultant. Last March, former Maryland assistant coach (at one time, in fact, along with Franklin) -- and interim head coach in 2015 -- Mike Locksley was hired by Alabama's Nick Saban as an offensive analyst. Locksley was in that role throughout the 2016 season. Then, after Sarkisian left, Locksley was promoted to a fulltime, on-the-field coaching position as co-offensive coordinator.

In the Big Ten, Michigan especially embraces the idea of analysts. Jim Harbaugh has five on staff, including Dave Adolph, his former defensive coordinator at San Diego State, and his newest addition, Kevin Lempa, a "senior defensive analyst," who was the defensive coordinator at Hawaii last season and a former assistant coach at Boston College under current Michigan defensive coordinator Don Brown. He was hired last month by Harbaugh. For the full list of U-M analysts, click here, then scroll down.

JAMES AND A NO. 10

NCAA rules stipulate that FBS football staffs can only have nine fulltime, on-the-field coaching assistants. However, that could soon change. Last fall, the NCAA's Football Oversight Committee recommended the addition of a 10th fulltime assistant. It's likely the NCAA will approve such an addition when the Division I Council meets in April. However, the 10th assistant will most likely be added in January 2018. 

"There are many concerns with the timing of the current immediate effective date," according to the NCAA. "An April effective date is in the middle of the budget year for the membership and is late in the hiring period for a football staff. If the effective date is amended to occur to the conclusion of the 2017 football season, member institutions will have the opportunity to budget for the addition of a full-time countable coach and associated costs related to recruiting. In addition, a delayed effective date will better fit the hiring timeline for a football staff and will not require readjustments following the spring practice period." 

Could Galiano be the 10th fulltime assistant-coach-in-waiting? Possibly. His special teams experience, in the NFL and at Rutgers -- which is also known as Blocked Kick U. -- might be a tip-off.

Here's what Franklin had to say last fall about the addition of a 10th fulltime assistant, knowing currently that Penn State running backs coach Charles Huff also coaches the Nittany Lions' special teams, with an assist from wide receivers coach Josh Gattis:

"If you look at all of the sports in major college athletics, we have the worst player-to-coach ratio and it's probably the sport that probably gets the most focus and attention," Franklin said. "We have to manage, we have to educate, we have to coach all these kids. So being able to get a number to help with that I think is important.

"What I think a lot of people will do is they'll probably go two directions. You can go the NFL model, where you go with a special teams coordinator. Instead of having a special teams coordinator that coaches a position and coordinates special teams, you have a special teams coordinator and that's his main responsibility. He may help out with another position, but that's his main responsibility. Or, the other thing you always do — like anything in life — you just go best available. So you may say my model is to go with a special teams coordinator, but Coach X is available and wants to come and he's just so experienced and so valuable that you go with that guy as well. There's two different models."

CJF is thinking ST, though.

"I'm probably leaning more towards a special teams coordinator that would help out on defense," he said, "because typically with nine coaches, you have five on offense and four on defense, (with) one of those offensive coaches splitting time as a special teams coordinator. Putting a special teams coordinator on the defensive side of the ball as well, those guys would be like co-coordinators and even out your coaches five and five."

ADDITIONAL ADDITIONS

Also new on the Penn State staff:

-- Four new graduate assistants: Sean Cascarano, Mark Dupuis, Matt Fleischacker and Kevin Smith.

-- Recruiting assistant Andrew Goodman, a former Penn State walk-on at wide receiver who was hired in December.

To read more about Fleischacker and Goodman, both Penn Staters with previous ties to the Nittany Lion football program, check out my column from a few weeks ago by clicking here.

(A final note: No StateCollege.com support staffers were used to help write this story.)



Mike Poorman has covered Penn State football since 1979, and for StateCollege.com since the 2009 season. His column appears on Mondays and Fridays. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/PSUPoorman. His views and opinions do not necessarily reflect those of Penn State University.
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