Auburn hires Fins' Muschamp as d-coordinator

Updated: February 3, 2006, 8:41 PM ET
Associated Press

AUBURN, Ala. -- Auburn hired Miami Dolphins assistant Will Muschamp as defensive coordinator on Friday to replace David Gibbs, who left a day earlier to become secondary coach of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Tigers coach Tommy Tuberville said Muschamp, a former Georgia player, "fit the criteria perfectly of what I was looking for."

"I wanted someone that had coordinator experience both at the pro level and in the SEC," Tuberville said. "Will was qualified in both areas."

Muschamp was a defensive coordinator at LSU and followed head coach Nick Saban from LSU to Miami last year. With the Dolphins, the 34-year-old Muschamp was the assistant head coach in charge of defense and was responsible for calling the defensive plays.

The Dolphins ranked second in the NFL in sacks last season.

Saban hired Dom Capers as special assistant to the head coach last week, but Muschamp didn't say if that was a factor in his decision to leave.

"I wouldn't be where I am today without [Saban]," he said. "He's an outstanding football coach, an outstanding person. And what I have been able to accomplish, I attribute a lot to him."

Tuberville hadn't decided if Muschamp would coach the secondary, as Gibbs did, or replace Joe Whitt as linebackers coach. Tuberville announced Friday that Whitt would move into a fundraising position within the athletic department.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press