Young out, Spencer in as OSU defensive coordinator

Young out, Spencer in as OSU defensive coordinator

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) Bill Young stepped down after four seasons as Oklahoma State's defensive coordinator Thursday, meaning the Cowboys will have two new coordinators next season.

Coach Mike Gundy said Young will be replaced by linebackers coach Glenn Spencer. Offensive coordinator Todd Monken left to become the head coach at Southern Miss and he has not yet been replaced.

Young's exit was somewhat surprising. Leading up to the Heart of Dallas Bowl, he had discussed contemplating retirement after more than 40 years in coaching that included stops at Miami (Fla.), Ohio State, Southern California, Oklahoma and with the NFL's Detroit Lions. But after a dominant performance in the bowl game against Purdue, Young said he had decided to stay as long as he was wanted.

That didn't end up being much longer.

Young's defenses were known for causing turnovers more frequently than any other team in the country. Over his first three seasons, the Cowboys created 108 takeaways, 17 more than any other team. But Oklahoma State couldn't keep up that pace after the best season in school history, falling off to an 8-5 finish this season.

The unit's 22 takeaways ended up in the middle of the pack nationwide, with five of those coming in the 48-14 bowl blowout against Purdue. That total was exactly half of the 44 turnovers forced as Oklahoma State won its first Big 12 championship, the Fiesta Bowl and a school-record 12 games in 2011.

The takeaways had also been a key part in his defense at Kansas in 2007, when the Jayhawks ranked in the top five in the country with 35 turnovers forced on their way to an Orange Bowl victory.

Before this season, Gundy had suggested the defense could be the best in his tenure at Oklahoma State, but it fell far short those expectations.

The Cowboys finished the season ranked 80th in the nation with 421.7 yards allowed per game and 110th in pass defense, giving up 280 yards per game. Instead of getting takeaways at all the key moments, Oklahoma State struggled to get stops when they were needed the most.

``We are appreciative of everything Coach Young has done for us over the past four years,'' Gundy said in a statement, ``but we are also excited about heading in a new direction with our defense.''

Spencer filled in as Oklahoma State's defensive coordinator for the first two games this season, when Young was recovering from treatment for an aneurysm that was found between his eyes. That included a shutout against overmatched Savannah State in the opener and a 42-30 loss at Arizona.

Spencer has been the Cowboys' linebackers coach for the past five seasons. He was also given the title of co-defensive coordinator prior to the 2011 season. He previously was an assistant coach at Duke and Georgia Tech, his alma mater.

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Game 75 Capitals at Canadiens Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

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Game 75 Capitals at Canadiens Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Montreal Canadiens

Where: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

When: 7:00 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Canadiens will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington.

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Canadiens game on NBC Sports' live stream page.


The Capitals (43-24-7) take on the Canadiens (27-36-12) Saturday, March 24 at 7:00 p.m. ET in Montreal.


The Capitals-Canadiens game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off on NBC Sports Washington with Capitals FaceOff at 6:00 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 6:30 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington after the game for Caps Extra and Caps Overtime at 10:00 p.m. for postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

6:00 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
6:30 p.m. — Caps GameTime
7:00 p.m. — Capitals at Canadiens
9:30 p.m. — Caps Extra
10:00 p.m. — Caps Overtime


You can watch the Capitals-Canadiens game on NBC Sports' live stream page.


Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans. 

For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, March 24, 33 days before the NFL draft.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington.

Free agency update: What's next for the Redskins on the D-line? The Redskins have been casting out lines for defensive linemen since before free agency officially started but they haven’t been able to reel one in. Part of the issue might be that they know that Vita Vea and Da’Ron Payne are likely to be available in the draft. They have to balance spending big on a lineman vs. being able to get one pretty cheap for the next five years.

Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility—Speaking of the D-line, the team negotiated the removal of a salary guarantee for one player to give themselves more flexibility when it comes time to cut the roster down to 53 in September. See the post for details.

Redskins guarantee Alex Smith a whopping $71 million in new contract—In the words of Joe Biden, this is a big f-----g deal. It showed that the Redskins aren’t afraid to pay a quarterback big money if they think it’s the right guy. It should be noted that whether or not they chose the right guy is something that remains to be seen. Although the post shows that it’s plausible for the Redskins to terminate the deal after three years, I anticipate Smith playing out at least four if not all five years of the contract.

Redskins add another ex-Cowboy as they sign Scandrick—Orlando Scandrick has struggled with injuries the past few years and Redskins fans did not greet the news of his signing with great enthusiasm, to say the least. To point out the bright side, his contract is not pricey by NFL terms ($2.6 million cap hit this year, no guaranteed money beyond a $1 million signing bonus) and from what I have been able to gather it’s possible that change of scenery might give him a boost for a year or two.

Tweet of the week

Well before free agency started, I wrote that the Redskins’ top priorities in free agency should be to get extensions done for Smith, Brandon Scherff, and Jamison Crowder. They should have about $15 million to work with after a few more free agent signings and that would be plenty to get all of those extensions done. And if they do score a big free agent signing, it would be worth it to restructure the contract of someone like Ryan Kerrigan to get them done.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.


Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 23
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 124
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 169

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