After several staff members were let go following the 2015 season, head coach Bill Cubit had some coaching vacancies to fill. After today's report from the News-Gazette, it appears he has filled all of them.
A source close to the program told The News-Gazette today that Tim McGarigle will coach linebackers and Paul Williams will handle the defensive backs.
McGarigle comes to Illinois after four seasons on the staff at Western Michigan. Before that, McGarigle played three seasons in the NFL and was a graduate assistant at Northwestern, his alma mater.
McGarigle was one of the best tacklers in Northwestern football history, and was selected in the NFL draft by the St. Louis Rams. He played in 12 games the following season but only recorded six tackles and was eventually released. He then found a job at his alma mater, helping out defensively for the Wildcats before taking the linebacker coach's position at Western Michigan. He was still on the staff for the team's Bahamas Bowl victory this past week, but will now join Cubit and company in Champaign. Another interesting note from the article:
The source said Tim McGarigle and Paul Williams were hired both for their coaching ability and skill as recruiters. Signing day is February 3rd.
The Illini have five scholarships left to fill before the signing day deadline, and hopefully the additions of McGarigle and Williams will only further help.
These moves completed Bill Cubit's 2016 coaching staff hires. As of right now, the breakdown looks like this:
- Offensive Coordinator: Ryan Cubit
- Running backs: Nathan Scheelhaase
- Wide receivers: Mike Bellamy
- Tight ends/special teams: Jeff Hecklinski
- Offensive line: A.J. Ricker
- Defensive Coordinator: Mike Phair
- Inside linebackers: Tim McGarigle
- Outside linebackers: Al Seamonson
- Defensive backs: Paul Williams
Cubit has done a solid job of adding quality coaches to this list, now it's time to see what the Fighting Illini look like completely as "Bill Cubit's team."