Arizona’s new special teams and defensive ends/outside linebackers coach Brian Knorr is the working definition of the uncertain life of a college football coach.
After playing quarterback at Air Force in the early 1980s and rising to the rank of captain while serving at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, Knorr coached three separate stints at his alma mater, and also coached at Wake Forest, Indiana and Ohio State.
He was the head coach at Ohio in 2001 when Rich Rodriguez, in his first year at West Virginia, registered career victory No. 1 over Knorr’s Bobcats.
But what is more telling is how Knorr’s first-ever Ohio staff, in 2001, has spread across the college football landscape. If ever there is a way to define how transient the industry is, check what happened to Knorr’s nine Ohio assistants of ’01:
Greg Gregory is now at Norfolk State.
Everette Sands is in his sixth job since Ohio, coaching at UTSA.
Steve Russ is at Air Force.
Tim Kish, an Arizona assistant from 2004-11, is the linebackers coach at Oklahoma.
Pete Germano is at Fresno State.
Ron Antoine is at Texas State after stops at Wofford and Elon.
Mike Sullivan is the offensive coordinator of the New York Giants.
Eric Washington is an assistant for the Carolina Panthers after coaching at Northwestern and for the Chicago Bears.
Mike Summers, who has coached at six other places since 2001, coaches for Louisvillle.
A year ago, Knorr was an offensive analyst at Ohio State. A year earlier, he was the defensive coordinator at Indiana. The shuttle between jobs can be unreasonably quick. In 2014, a week before Knorr took the Indiana job, Air Force announced that it was hiring him to be its defensive coordinator.
One thing about college football coaching: There always seems to be a place to land. Knorr is only 53; by the time he retires, he could coach at five or six more schools.