Senior College Football Columnist

Popovich reunites with Coker at UTSA

Jeff Popovich, the defensive backs coach who learned he was getting fired by new FIU coach Ron Turner just a few minutes before the new FIU head coach announced the Panthers signing class last month, confirmed to CBSSports.com Wednesday that he has been hired by Texas-San Antonio.

At UTSA, Popovich will coach cornerbacks for head coach Larry Coker, who the former Miami defensive back had coached under at UM in 2005 and 2006 as a grad assistant.

Popovich, a former three-time Academic All-Big East selection and one-time Abercrombie & Fitch model, spent six seasons at FIU. While at FIU, Popovich helped develop NFLer Tony Gaitor as well as Johnathan Cyprien, a likely second or third-rounder come April. This year Popovich, in the wake of the stunning firing of Mario Cristobal, was also directly responsible for seven of the players FIU signed, included three of the four highest-rated recruits in a class that was ranked No. 105 overall.

Popovich, incidentally, is not related to San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.

UTSA, which went 8-4 last season as a member of the WAC under the 64-year-old Coker, begins play in Conference USA in the fall.

 
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