Take it for what it is worth, but the New York Daily News is reporting that the New York Jets outside linebackers coach, Mike Smith, has been hired as the co-defensive coordinator for Texas Tech and head coach Kliff Kingsbury:
The first coaching domino has fallen in what could promises to be a busy offseason for the Jets. The Daily News has learned that outside linebackers coach Mike Smith will leave Gang Green after the season to accept a position at his alma mater, Texas Tech.
Smith served as a coaching intern for two seasons before accepting a full-time position earlier this year. Smith will be a co-defensive coordinator on new head coach Kliff Kingsbury’s staff, according to sources.
Smith, 31, was an honorable mention All-America for Texas Tech before he was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in seventh round of the 2005 draft. He played two seasons for Rex Ryan’s defense before injuries curtailed his career.
Prior to this year, Smith was an intern for the Jets and was retained as a position coach after taking the West Virginia defensive coordinator position last year and was also reportedly going to be hired as part of Washington St.'s coaching staff. As most of you know, Smith is from Lubbock, attended Coronado and later went on to play at Texas Tech from 2000 through 2004. Smith then went on to play in the NFL, being drafted in the 7th round by the Baltimore Ravens.
Obviously, Smith and Kingsbury crossed paths during their time at Texas Tech as Kingsbury graduated in 2002. I haven't been able to find anything recent on Smith, but did find this NY Daily News article about Smith from 2011 when he was still an intern and helping Aaron Maybin, who has subsequently been released by the Jets in November, helping Maybin to a terrific 2011 season, after failing to record a sack in the first 8 games of the season for the Jets. Maybin had this to say about Smith at the time:
"He probably spends more time than a whole lot of the other coaches on all the small parts of everyday practice that people don’t even recognize," Maybin says. "On top of that, he’s spending hours upon hours working with me. Obviously, I’m grateful for a reason. He’s gone above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to me. He’s definitely done a lot as far as helping to bring me along that he didn’t have to do. He knows how good I want to be and I think he wants to help me get there."
Obviously, Smith has been a guy that has almost been hired for Leach and for Holgorsen, so we may wait for some more details before we consider this a done deal.