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Arizona hires ex-USC assistant Greg Burns as new defensive backs coach

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 19 Arizona at USC Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Arizona Wildcats don't know when they'll be able to resume spring football, due to the global coronavirus outbreak, but when they do it will be with a full staff.

The school announced Monday the hiring of Greg Burns as defensive backs coach, filling the spot that opened when Demetrice Martin left for Colorado on March 2.

“We are obviously in a very unique time, and the importance of surrounding ourselves with men such as Greg is crucial in the development of our student-athletes on and off the field. We are fortunate to have Greg with our secondary during this time. ” Arizona head coach Kevin Sumlin said in a statement. “He brings more than 20 years of experience coaching in the secondary with a successful track record in recruiting and development. His Pac-12 experience, professionalism and passion for the game will be a great addition to our staff. He is more than qualified to help lead our student-athletes during this unique time.”

Burns, who was officially hired March 9 while the team was on Spring Break, has been coaching football since 1997 with nearly all of that experience coming at the collegiate level.

He was at USC last season, his second stint with the Trojans, after spending 2018 at Oregon State and three seasons at Cal. Arizona will be his fifth different Pac-12 program.

Burns is Arizona's fifth new assistant coach hired by Sumlin since the 2019 season ended. The other additions were defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads, defensive line coach Stan Eggen, outside linebackers coach Andy Buh and running backs coach A.J. Steward.

Coaching history

  • USC Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2019)
  • Oregon State Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2018)
  • California Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2014-16)
  • Massachusetts Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2013)
  • Purdue Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2012)
  • Arizona State Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2008-11)
  • Kansas State Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2007)
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2006)
  • USC Assistant Coach – Defensive Backs (2002-05)
  • Louisville Assistant Coach – Cornerbacks (1998-2001)
  • Idaho Assistant Coach – Cornerbacks (1997)