Missouri Tigers Hire Barry Odom as New Defensive Coordinator


10 days after losing long-time defensive coordinator Dave Steckel, who departed to accept the head coaching position at Missouri State, the Missouri Tigers have found his replacement. On Tuesday, the Tigers announced the hiring of Barry Odom, who will serve as the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach for the 2015 season.

Odom had been the defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Memphis since 2012. Prior to that, however, he coached at Mizzou from 2003 to 2011. Odom also played at Missouri from 1996 to 1999, playing linebacker and amassing 362 career tackles.

The 38-year-old Odom has a more diverse skill set than many coaches, as he spent a significant portion of his career on the administrative side before ultimately becoming Mizzou’s safeties coach in 2009. After originally joining the coaching staff as an administrative graduate assistant, Odom was the director of recruiting in 2004 and 2005, then was promoted to director of football operations for the 2006 season. He became an assistant athletic director in 2007 and served in that role for two years before becoming a position coach. It’s safe to say that with Odom’s rather quick rise to a coordinator position and his extensive background dealing with the off-field elements of operating a program, he could be a desirable head coaching candidate in the near future.

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Odom’s defense at Memphis experienced plenty of success in 2014, as they were ranked 22nd in the country in fewest yards allowed per game with 343. Ironically, they finished just one spot ahead of Mizzou, who allowed 345 yards per game on average. Memphis finished fifth in the country in points allowed per game, as they finished the season allowing an average of just 17.1 points per contest.

Memphis ran a 3-4 defense with Odom at the helm, which obviously contrasts with the 4-3 look that Mizzou has used for the duration of Gary Pinkel‘s tenure. Presumably, though, Missouri will stick with a 4-3, as they had plenty of success defensively in 2014, and the rest of the defensive staff is experienced with that scheme.

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