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Buffalo hires Michigan defensive coordinator Maurice Linguist as football head coach

Linguist will replace the out-going Lance Leipold, who accepted the Kansas job last week.

Buffalo v Miami Ohio Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

The University at Buffalo has closed in on the next coach to step in and take the helm of a promising Bulls program, naming Maurice “Mo” Linguist as head coach after the departure of Lance Leipold for Kansas last week.

Linguist, a former cornerback for Baylor from 2003-06, was recently hired by the University of Michigan to be a co-defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach for the upcoming season, replacing in part Don Brown. He spent the 2020 season with the Dallas Cowboys as a defensive backs coach, and has stints as a DB coach at eight college institutions over his 13-year coaching career, including at Buffalo, where he was a DB coach from 2012-13.

Per sister site Maize N’ Brew, Linguist has been notable as a major recruiting talent in his short time in Ann Arbor, and has proven to be an asset to Jim Harbaugh’s staff in that regard, having already installed his defensive schemes this spring. This would be his first head coaching job at any level

Linguist will have big shoes to fill, as Leipold was one of, if not, the best coaches in program history, in Lance Leipold.

Leipold finished 37-33 as Buffalo’s head man, but a lot of that success came in the second half of his six-year tenure, with two divisional championships, a top-25 ranking in 2020, and the program’s first two bowl wins in program history in 2019 and 2020. Though he never won a MAC championship, Leipold’s teams displayed impressive discipline and ability on both sides of the ball, and graduated several draft picks from the program, including DE/OLB Malcolm Koonce in last week’s NFL Draft.

Linguist will inherit a program which will likely be determined to be a favorite to win the MAC East division once again, so they’ll be expected to deliver results right away.

No deal has been finalized as of publication, but the school did officially informally announce the hiring as of 7:30 Friday evening.