MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Neal Brown filled the final vacancy on his coaching staff, announcing the hire of Dontae Wright as West Virginia’s new outside linebackers coach on Tuesday.
Wright replaces Al Pogue, who was recently hired by Auburn.
Wright served as the safeties coach at Western Michigan the past two seasons.
“Dontae is an excellent addition to our coaching staff and comes highly recommended,” Brown said in an official school release. “He brings years of defensive experience and has an ability to recruit with success in different areas of the country.
“I was impressed with his leadership and player development at each of his stops. We are looking forward to Dontae joining the Mountaineer Football program.”
While they have never worked together, Brown is connected with Wright through his alma mater. Wright served as a graduate assistant at Kentucky from 2007-09.
Wright moved his way up the ranks through the back roads of college football, starting at Division III Centre College. From there, he went to Division II North Alabama, then FCS programs Morehead State and Tennessee Tech before being hired by Western Michigan. Wright served as Morehead State’s defensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator in 2015.
The Louisa, Ky. native played at Miami (Ohio) from 2003-06. Wright hails from the same tiny hometown — population 2,375 — as new West Virginia offensive coordinator Gerad Parker. Louisa borders West Virginia across the Big Sandy River.
“This is an unbelievable opportunity for me to be a member of Neal Brown’s staff, work with a great group of players and be a part of a program with the tradition of West Virginia University,” Wright said in WVU’s official release. “I’m looking forward to competing against the best in the conference, competing against the best in the nation in recruiting and assisting everyone in the football building to elevate our program.
“Growing up right outside West Virginia, I understand and respect what this state is about. I look forward to getting started.”
Wright is the third new on-field assistant to join the coaching staff this offseason. Parker is taking over for departed wide receivers coach Xavier Dye (South Florida), and special teams coordinator/inside linebackers coach Jeff Koonz replaces Blake Seiler (Old Dominion).