Kentucky announces hiring of Eliot as defensive coordinator

jsmith3@herald-leader.comDecember 6, 2012 

Kentucky made it official on Thursday and named D.J. Eliot the Cats' new defensive coordinator.

The former Florida State defensive ends coach also will be responsible for coaching linebackers, according to the school's news release.

"D.J. is one of the brightest young minds in college football," said new Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops, who has coached with Eliot at Wyoming, Houston, Miami (Fla.) and FSU. "He has a relentless work ethic and is extremely detailed."

Eliot, who has coached for 15 seasons, has spent the last three at Florida State, where he helped guide a turnaround of the Seminoles' defense.

Several of Eliot's players have achieved national prominence, including ACC Defensive Player of the Year Bjoern Werner.

Eliot and Stoops met at Wyoming, where Stoops coached defensive backs and Eliot was a linebacker, who eventually became a student and graduate assistant at his alma mater.

"I'm very excited with the opportunity to coach at Kentucky and continue to work with Coach Stoops," Eliot said in UK's release. "I believe in the potential of UK."

The 36-year-old native of Edmond, Okla., is married to Miekel and they have a son, Dawson, and two daughters, Drue and Page.

■ Kentucky punter Landon Foster was named to the Freshman All-Southeastern Conference Team by the league's coaches Thursday. He ranked 27th nationally and eighth in the conference with a season average of 42.9 yards per punt.

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