Syracuse tabs Zach Arnett as new defensive coordinator

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Syracuse coach Dino Babers named Zach Arnett as the Orange’s new defensive coordinator on Saturday.

Arnett joins the Orange after serving as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at San Diego State the past two seasons.

“He learned under a great defensive mind in Rocky Long at San Diego State and excelled when he got the opportunity to run the defense there,” Babers said. “His qualities, both as a person and as a professional, are an excellent fit for our program.”

Arnett, who has spent his entire coaching career studying under Long, led a 2019 San Diego State defense that ranked in the top 10 nationally in seven categories. The Aztecs finished second in rushing defense (75.4 yards per game), third in scoring defense (12.7 points per game), fourth in interceptions (18), fourth in first downs allowed (198), sixth in total defense (287.8), sixth in passing efficiency defense (110.25) and eighth in turnovers gained (27).

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Prior to his stint as defensive coordinator, Arnett was San Diego State’s linebackers coach from 2014-17. He also spent three years (2011-13) at SDSU as a defensive graduate assistant.

Arnett played linebacker at the University of New Mexico. He logged 200 career tackles and tied for the Bowl Subdivision lead with six forced fumbles as a senior captain in 2008.

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