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Sunday, June 23, 2024
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UB football announces new coaching staff hires

The additions include a new offensive coordinator, defensive backs coach and special teams coordinator

The UB football team announced its new coaching hires last week.
The UB football team announced its new coaching hires last week.

After a 6-6 season that saw the Bulls win their third bowl game in four seasons, UB announced multiple coaching changes last week. Here’s a look at the new hires:

DJ Mangas (Offensive coordinator) 

Mangas was hired as the team’s new offensive coordinator, replacing Shane Montgomery, who spent the past two seasons calling plays for the Bulls. Mangas was most recently a defensive analyst at UCF during the 2022 season.

The highlight of Mangas’ 11-year coaching career was the 2019 season, where he was an offensive analyst for LSU during the Tigers’ national championship run. Working with the likes of Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase, Mangas was a key part of one of the best offenses in SEC history, which averaged almost 50 points a game. 

Because of that historic season, Mangas earned an NFL coaching gig in 2020 as an offensive coaching assistant with the Carolina Panthers. He then returned to LSU for the 2021 season, taking over as the team’s pass game coordinator.

Robert Wright (Special teams coordinator)

Wright will join the coaching staff as the new special teams coordinator/defensive assistant. 

Wright spent last season as a senior defensive analyst at Duke. Before that, he was a special teams analyst at Iowa State in 2021 and a defensive graduate assistant at Texas A&M during the 2019 and 2020 seasons. While at A&M, Wright worked alongside Linguist as well as current UB defensive coordinator Brandon Bailey. 

Wright began his coaching career at the University of Miami (FL), where he was a special teams quality control coach in 2015.

Holman Copeland (Defensive backs coach)

Copeland, who will now serve as the defensive backs coach, will return to UB 10 years after working with the Bulls as a graduate assistant during the 2012 and 2013 seasons. He was most recently the cornerbacks coach at Delaware, having held that position since the 2019 season. During the 2012 season, Copeland worked with former UB superstar and current NFL All-Pro, Khalil Mack as a linebackers assistant.

Bryan Applewhite (Running backs coach)

Applewhite joins the UB coaching staff as the new running backs coach. His resume includes over 20 years of coaching experience with him, including stints as the running backs coach with notable Power Five programs such as Nebraska and TCU. 

While at TCU in 2020, Applewhite mentored running back Kendre Miller, who was recently a key player on the TCU team that made it to the College Football Playoff National Championship.

Here’s a list of other hires and promotions within the football program:

Ryan Barry was named special teams quality control coach after spending the last two seasons as a graduate assistant at Northern Illinois.

Mickey Jacobs was named defensive analyst and quality control coach. He most recently spent two seasons as a defensive graduate assistant at Pittsburgh.

Chauncey Scissum was named assistant strength and conditioning coach. Scissum was most recently the assistant strength and conditioning coach at Connecticut (UConn). He also spent two seasons at Memphis.­­

Ian Fried was named director of recruiting. He most recently held the same position at Western Michigan.

Jacob Byron was promoted to assistant strength and conditioning coach.

Ethan Sheirer was promoted to senior special teams analyst.

Brandon Cochi is an assistant sports editor and can be reached at



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