New Mexico State has hired UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker to run its football program, making him the seventh black head coach in college football's top division. Walker's hiring was a few years in the making. The journeyman coordinator arrived nationally after stopping the USC offense cold in a 13-9 UCLA victory that prevented a certain USC appearance in the 2006 BCS Championship Game.
His impact was immediate, flipping one of the nation's worst defenses into a fast and aggressive unit that played tough and could stop the run. Subsequent seasons weren't as successful, but he added chops as a recruiter, bringing in a handful of players who will likely have NFL futures like defensive tackle Brian Price and cornerback Alterraun Verner.
Walker took his time, visiting Las Cruces for a while before accepting the Aggies' offer. His departure was expected, however, and his name has popped up as a central player in this week's man drama kerfuffle between USC and UCLA.
DeWayne Walker Becomes Seventh Black Head Coach in Division I Football originally appeared on Fanhouse NCAA Football Blog on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 23:56:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.