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Sources: CU Buffs land DB, DL and OL coaches

New Colorado head coach Karl Dorrell expected to hire Demetrice Martin, Mitch Rodrigue and Chris Wilson

Defensive line coach Chris Wilson, left, poses with former Colorado standout Matt McChesney.
Courtesy Matt McChesney
Defensive line coach Chris Wilson, left, poses with former Colorado standout Matt McChesney.

Colorado is taking a secondary coach from a Pac-12 South rival and a defensive line coach from its past.

The Buffaloes have also found an offensive line coach from the South.

According to BuffZone sources on Monday, CU and new head coach Karl Dorrell are expected to hire assistant coaches Demetrice Martin (secondary), Mitch Rodrigue (offensive line) and Chris Wilson (defensive line).

It was reported on Saturday that Dorrell will also hire Taylor Embree as tight ends coach.

CU has not confirmed or announced the hiring of Embree, Martin, Rodrigue or Wilson.

Dorrell, announced as CU’s head coach on Feb. 24, is retaining four assistants from former head coach Mel Tucker’s staff: Darrin Chiaverini, Darian Hagan, Brian Michalowski and Tyson Summers. That would leave one opening on the staff of 10 assistants.

Demetrice Martin

Martin, 47, has spent the past two seasons at Arizona, which has revamped its defensive staff. Martin, who has coached the Wildcats’ cornerbacks, was expected to be the only holdover from Arizona’s 2019 defensive staff.

Martin has spent his entire 19-year coaching career in the West, including the last 11 years in the Pac-12. Prior to Arizona, Martin coached six seasons (2012-17) at UCLA, working with the secondary, while adding the title of assistant head coach in his last four years. From 2009-11, Martin coached defensive backs at Washington. He also spent the 2006-07 seasons as a defensive graduate assistant at Southern California.

Since 2009, defensive backs coached by Martin have collected 20 all-conference honors. A California native, Martin starred at Muir High School in Pasadena before playing receiver and cornerback at Michigan State from 1992-95. He led the Big Ten with seven interceptions in 1994, earning first-team all-conference honors.

The Arizona media guide refers to Martin as “one of the top recruiters on the West Coast.”

Chris Wilson

Wilson, 51, has been a long-time defensive line coach, including from 2000-04 at CU, where he helped the Buffs win three Big 12 North titles during head coach Gary Barnett’s tenure. Most recently, he coached with the Philadelphia Eagles from 2016-18, helping them to a win in Super Bowl LII, and with the Arizona Cardinals last season.

At CU, Wilson’s group included Justin Bannan, Tyler Brayton, Brandon Dabdoub, Matt McChesney, Gabe Nyenhuis, Sam Wilder and Abraham Wright, who all played in the NFL.

“He’s like a father to me,” McChesney told BuffZone. “Best coach I’ve ever had. He’s going to get the most out of that group. That group consequently has some NFL players on it. I know one thing: those boys are gonna work like they never have in their life. Get ready to be great.”

Wilson’s career has included stops at Oklahoma (2005-09), Mississippi State (2010-12), Georgia (2013) and USC (2014-15).

Wilson coached first-team All-American Fletcher Cox at Mississippi State and then coached Cox to three consecutive Pro Bowls with the Eagles.

A two-time captain during his playing days at Oklahoma, Wilson recorded 303 tackles with the Sooners and was a 12th-round draft choice of the Chicago Bears in 1992. Wilson’s son, Caleb, played tight end at UCLA and is currently with the Washington Redskins.

Mitch Rodrigue

Rodrigue has spent the past two seasons coaching high school football in Alabama, but has more than 25 years of college coaching experience. A graduate of Nicholls State, Rodrigue coached the offensive line for seven years at Louisiana (2011-17) and three years at South Alabama (2008-10).

During a nine-year run at Southern Mississippi (1999-07), he coached offensive line, as well as tight ends and running backs for one season. Prior to Southern Miss, Rodrigue coached at Nicholls State for six years, working as offensive coordinator, as well as line and tight ends coach.

Rodrigue has been a part of teams that earned 14 bowl invitations and he has had several linemen go on to the NFL, including Houston Texans tackle Chris Clark, who played five seasons (2010-14) with the Denver Broncos.

Embree, who has spent the past three years as a quality control coach with the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers, is the son of former CU player and head coach Jon Embree, who currently works as assistant head coach/tight ends coach for the 49ers.

Colorado assistant coaches and their roles, according to sources:


Darrin Chiaverini – Coordinator/receivers

Taylor Embree – Tight ends

Darian Hagan – Running backs

Mitch Rodrigue – Offensive line


Tyson Summers – Coordinator/inside linebackers

Demetrice Martin – Secondary

Brian Michalowski – Outside linebackers

Chris Wilson – Defensive line