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Williams: Gibbs’ contract expires; what does it mean?

Posted: January 7, 2017 - 8:32pm
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The two-year contract Texas Tech defensive coordinator David Gibbs signed the first week of January 2015 expired on Wednesday, prompting folks to wonder what the Red Raiders and Gibbs will do now.

Until further notice, this is what should be assumed: Gibbs will keep going to work every day and collecting regular paychecks under the old agreement, trying to repair the FBS’ 128th-ranked defense. Like millions of other Americans, he’ll just work without a contract.

That makes him no different than a lot of Tech coaches.

When the original assistant coaches on Kliff Kingsbury’s staff signed their contracts less than two weeks before the 2013 season opener, they’d already been working for Texas Tech for seven to eight months.

Each of those position coaches’ contracts stipulate the agreements were “made and entered into this the (blank) day of August, 2013 and effective February 1, 2013 … .” That’s not a misprint. They all signed between Aug. 18 and Aug. 26, 2013, formalizing the pay rates under which they’d been working since they were hired.

Similarly, Kingsbury hired four new assistants last winter. However, Gibbs was the only assistant on staff under contract until many months later. Eventually, special teams coordinator Joe Robinson signed a two-year contract and the position coaches one-year deals.

As one Tech official told me, the one-year contracts were drawn up so late, it was almost what’s the point?

So the fact Gibbs’ original agreement expired a few days ago seems to mean little. Oh, I suppose he could network at this week’s AFCA coaches convention in Nashville. But truth is, his buyout obligation the last two years never seemed a big hindrance anyway — he’d have owed Tech $200,000 to become a defensive coordinator or lower at another Big 12 school, $25,000 to become a DC or lower at any FBS school, nothing to become a head coach or go back to the NFL.

If Kingsbury was going to make a change, he’d have done it weeks ago. If Gibbs wants a new job, the performance of the Red Raiders’ defense the last two years is not a selling point.

There’s no reason to think Gibbs won’t be Tech’s defensive coordinator again next season. And, if recent history is any indication, maybe he and Tech will get around to doing another contract before the season opener.

— Trey Haverty, the former Texas Tech wide receiver and assistant coach, has been hired to Tom Herman’s new staff at Texas. Haverty will be a quality control analyst for new Longhorns defensive coordinator Todd Orlando.

The Longhorns hired Haverty on Thursday, and he starts Monday. Haverty, a third-team All-America receiver in 2004, spent last season as defensive coordinator at Lamar. The Cardinals’ staff broke up when head coach Ray Woodard was fired after a 3-8 season that ended on a five-game losing streak.

Haverty said he went and watched a couple of Houston practices when Herman and Orlando were in charge of the Cougars and likes their coaching style.

— Andrew Sowder is less than 10 years out of Shallowater High School is expected to become the youngest offensive coordinator in the FBS. Sowder’s reportedly headed to San Jose State as offensive coordinator after spending last season as a quality control coach on Charlie Strong’s staff at Texas. Sowder turns 29 in July.

Since playing at Baylor and serving as a Bears student assistant coach, he’s been an assistant at West Texas A&M, Eastern Illinois and Bowling Green.

In addition to being a tight end and defensive end in football, Sowder was on Shallowater’s state champion basketball team in 2004 and its state runner-up team in 2007.

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