Vikings coach Leslie Frazier is still setting up his coaching staff for 2011.
Bruce Bisping, Star Tribune
Frazier keeping Dunbar, Stewart
- Article by: SID HARTMAN
- Star Tribune
- January 16, 2011 - 12:42 AM
Vikings coach Leslie Frazier continues to put together his coaching staff, and there still is a question of whether offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and special teams coach Brian Murphy will remain on the staff.
Frazier said he has given Bevell and Murphy the right to look at other positions while he decides the makeup of his staff. Bevell and Murphy have been members of the staff since Brad Childress was hired as the Vikings coach in 2006.
Frazier said there is no truth to rumors that defensive line coach Karl Dunbar and wide receiver coach George Stewart were looking at other jobs.
Frazier said that Dunbar and Stewart were going to remain on the staff.
Frazier has talked to former Denver Broncos coach and Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels about the position of offensive coordinator, and the new Vikings coach did visit with Mike Priefer, former Broncos special teams coach, about that job with the Vikings.
About the offensive coordinator job, Frazier said: "I've got a guy in mind and I should be able to announce it Monday or Tuesday."
Asked if he was considering Tom Moore, the longtime Colts offensive coordinator he worked with, Frazier said that Moore is going to stay retired.
It's also apparent that linebackers coach Fred Pagac, who replaced Frazier as the interim defensive coordinator at the end of the season, will remain on the staff.
While Frazier didn't comment about former 49ers coach Mike Singletary, who was interviewed for a defensive coaching position, there is a possibility that Singletary, a former teammate of Frazier with the Bears, will be a member of the new staff.
All of the position coaches who started with Childress, except for Dunbar, have two-year contracts. So any Frazier doesn't retain will be paid for next year unless they get other jobs. None of those -- including Childress, who also has two years left on his contract -- has received a job so far.
So apparently the Wilf family, owner of the team, is willing to spend the extra money to give Frazier the staff he wants.Tough time for Nolen
Despite having a lot of problems as a member of the Gophers basketball team, including being ineligible academically the second semester last season (missing 17 games) and missing five games this year because of a foot injury, Al Nolen continues to be a big contributor to the team. He was one of the big stars in the victory over Purdue on Thursday, making the final three-pointer that broke a 67-67 tie and wound up with eight assists and only one turnover.
"I wouldn't say it's been too tough, I've just had a couple of mishaps," said the senior guard from Minneapolis Henry. "But just family support and team support and fan support and just wanting to be here really kept me on the path.
"It hurt a lot, but I can only think of it in the present now and move forward. My career is coming to a close here at Minnesota, so I just have to keep going. I'm just happy to be here and be grateful for the days I get to play."
Nolen said his foot is still not 100 percent healthy.
"The other night was one of my better games," he said. "Everybody was really focused, and we just came out and played hard. I think I just played the game and had fun and I think that helped me out."
Nolen said the team misses Devoe Joseph, who has transferred to Oregon. "There will be games where it's obvious that we're missing him," Nolen said. "But like I said before, he had to do what's best for him, and we understand that. Knowing him as a person and as a player and I wish the best for him, but we're definitely going to miss him."
The team has a 2-3 conference record and could reach .500 with a victory over Iowa on Sunday.
"I definitely think this team has the potential to go all the way, but we have to really come together as a group," Nolen said.Jottings
• The Twins remain optimistic about their chance to host the 2014 All-Star Game at Target Field. ... The Twins have been selected for eight appearances on the Fox network's Saturday national game of the week during the upcoming season. ... With the repair of the Metrodome roof still undetermined, the Twins and the University of Minnesota continue to discuss the possibility of the Gophers baseball team playing their entire schedule at Target Field this spring. Incidentally, for the first month of the Twins season, they are out of town on the weekends when the Gophers are scheduled to play at home.
• Local business leaders say Minneapolis is very much in the mix to host the 2012 Democratic National Convention, with Target Field and Target Center being key downtown venues for such an event.
• The Twins have already sold more than 100,000 tickets for the 16 spring training baseball games in Fort Myers. ... Look for the Twins to honor new Hall of Fame member Bert Blyleven at Target Field on July 16 when they host the Royals. ... The word is that Commissioner Bud Selig gave quite a tribute to retiring Twins executive Jerry Bell at Wednesday's dinner of team owners in Scottdale, Ariz., where they were meeting.
• Former Gophers receiver Eric Decker ended up having a solid rookie season for Denver after being hampered early on by a foot injury. Decker finished the season with six receptions for 106 yards and one touchdown -- which came in the Broncos' season finale against San Diego on a 6-yard pass from Tim Tebow. Decker also proved to be a standout returning kickoffs with 22 returns for 556 yards, including a season long of 51 against Arizona in Week 14. ... Nate Triplett, Decker's former Gophers teammate, finished his rookie season with four tackles for Indianapolis in five games after being signed by the Colts on Dec. 1. ... Former Gophers tight end Matt Spaeth saw action for Pittsburgh in Saturday's AFC playoff game against Baltimore after finishing the regular season with nine catches for 80 yards and one touchdown. Spaeth had no catches Saturday and has two career receptions for 13 yards in three playoff games.
• Tim Cross, who was defensive line coach and associate head coach of the Gophers, could join the staff at the University of Houston under Kevin Sumlin, who was on the Gophers staff at one time.
• It's possible that three assistant coaches who at one time were on Tim Brewster's Gophers staff will be on new football staff of Al Golden at the University of Miami. Already on Golden's staff are former Gophers offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch and wide receivers coach George McDonald, who was with the Browns last year. There are rumors that defensive coordinator Ted Roof might leave national champion Auburn for Miami. Then there is another local touch in that Brennan Carroll, oldest son of Seahawks football coach Pete Carroll, who was at one time on the Vikings staff, is the new Hurricanes tight ends coach.
Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on WCCO AM-830 at 6:40, 7:40 and 8:40 a.m. firstname.lastname@example.org
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