Former Temple and Miami head coach Manny Diaz named defensive coordinator at Penn State

The Philadelphia Inquirer (TNS)
Miami head coach Manny Diaz encourages his team during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Duke, Saturday, Nov. 27, 2021, in Durham, N.C. (AP Photo/Chris Seward)

Manny Diaz, who lasted 18 days as Temple's head coach before he left to take the same job at the University of Miami in 2018, has been hired as Penn State's new defensive coordinator and linebackers coach, head coach James Franklin announced Saturday.

Diaz's new job comes just five days after his firing as the Hurricanes' coach was disclosed. He compiled a 21-15 record in his three seasons at Miami and led the team to three bowl games.

Diaz, 47, served for three seasons as Miami's defensive coordinator before leaving after the 2018 season to accept the head coaching job at Temple. However, he did a quick U-turn after the sudden retirement of Mark Richt and returned to his hometown.

Diaz has been a defensive coordinator at four other schools over a span of 10 seasons, including Mississippi State, Louisiana Tech, Texas and Middle Tennessee State.

In a news release announcing Diaz's hiring, Franklin called him "a veteran defensive play caller whose head coaching experience will bring tremendous value to our organization.

"He has an innovative approach to complement his extensive X's-and-O's knowledge which he developed through his stops at multiple Power Five conferences," Franklin said. "Manny's defensive philosophy is in line with our scheme and will help in the transition with our current team."

Diaz replaces Brent Pry, who spent the last six seasons as the Nittany Lions' defensive coordinator before accepting the head coaching job at Virginia Tech on Nov. 30.

"Penn State's defense has been among the nation's best, both historically and under coach Franklin," Diaz said in the release. "I will continue to pursue excellence with our defensive unit on a daily basis. I can't wait to get on the field with this talented group, to get to know them, and to ultimately develop them as football players, students, and young men."

Miami finished 7-5 in Diaz's last season as head coach but won five of its last six games, including victories over top 20 teams Pittsburgh and North Carolina State.