The seemingly endless revolving door of Arizona State assistant coaches this off-season took another turn Tuesday as defensive coordinator Tony White left for the same position at Syracuse. ASU head coach Herm Edwards named Antonio Pierce and Marvin Lewis as co-defensive coordinators to replace White.
Sources: Syracuse is hiring ASU DC Tony White as the defensive coordinator. He brings Syracuse the unique 3-3-5 defense from his time at San Diego State, which Dino Babers has targeted for his program.
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) February 5, 2020
White, who was elevated from cornerbacks coach after Danny Gonzales took the heading coaching vacancy at his alma mater – New Mexico, will work under head coach Dino Babers at Syracuse. White called the defensive plays in the Sun Devils’ Sun Bowl win over Florida State on New Year’s Eve in El Paso.
Lewis and Pierce bring over 30 years of combined NFL coaching and playing experience to the position.
The former long-time Cincinnati Bengals head coach Lewis, who served as the interim defensive back’s coach in the Sun Bowl, originally joined ASU’s staff in 2019 as special advisor to Sun Devil Football.
The hard-working Pierce was recently promoted to associate head coach after spending his first two seasons in Tempe as the program’s linebacker coach and recruiting coordinator. A release stated he will retain his position as associate head coach and recruiting coordinator moving forward.
“Marvin Lewis is someone that I have come to trust wholeheartedly during my career and his coaching acumen will prove to be invaluable as we continue to push this program forward,” Edwards said in a released statement through the university. “He has coached at the highest level of football and spearheaded some elite defenses in the process. That kind of experience cannot be measured and his passion for teaching will extend beyond the student-athletes, but also to our coaching staff itself.”
Edwards also has continued high expectations for Pierce as ASU football continues to evolve.
“Antonio Pierce has established himself as one of the elite recruiters in the nation and is one of the brightest up-and-coming coaches around,” he explained. “His impact with the linebackers and with the Sun Devil program in just two seasons has been tangible and he has been a pivotal part in our defensive success since his arrival in Tempe.”
ASU will open spring workouts on Monday, February 24th.
The Sun Devils open their season against NAU on September 3rd.