Image Credit: ODU Athletics
New Old Dominion head coach Ricky Rahne continued filling out his staff. The new head man brought on offensive line coach Kevin Reihner, offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Kirk Campbell, running backs coach Tony Lucas, new outside linebackers coach/special teams coordinator Kevin Smith. Let’s take a closer look at the new Monarch coaches.
Reihner was most recently a graduate assistant at Penn State, coaching the offensive line. His unit only allowed 32 sacks in 2019. Prior to coaching at Penn State, Reihner coached tight ends at FCS-playoff-bound Delaware. Tight end Charles Scarff made the FCS All-American and All-CAA teams under his tutelage. Reihner has also coached at Wake Forest (2017, OL Grad. Assistant), Fordham (2016, Offensive QC), and played in three consecutive BCS bowls for Stanford.
Reihner inherits a group that returns four starters, including Isaac Weaver, Nick Saldiveri, Brandon Smith, and freshman Khadere Kounta.
New running backs coach Tony Lucas comes to Norfolk after coaching the same position at Elon in 2019. Prior to Elon, Lucas was instrumental at Temple, coaching Owls’ all-time rushing leader Ryquell Armstead who gained All-AAC honors in 2018. Lucas, like Reihner, spent time at Delaware. He was the RB coach/recruiting coordinator for five seasons, with four backs receiving All-CAA honors and 5.0 yards per carry. Lucas also coached at Georgetown, guiding all-conference backs in both of his seasons. He is a graduate of Columbia University.
Lucas will be coaching a position group that includes explosive redshirt freshman Lala Davis along with junior Robert Washington.
Kirk Campbell comes to ODU from Penn State, where he was an offensive analyst for the past three seasons. He assisted Rahne in QB meetings and helped scout future opponents. Rahne said of Campbell, “I’ve worked with Kirk for the past three years and I was impressed with him every day. His experience across multiple levels of collegiate football and in multiple roles will be extremely valuable in our quest to build a championship program.”
In Campbell’s time at PSU, all three offensive units finished in the top nine all-time for the Nittany Lions. Prior to PSU, Campbell was the OC at Alderson Broaddus in West Virginia. Campbell’s time at Alderson Broaddus taught him about coaching a startup program, as they went 9-2 in their fourth year of football and averaged 34.7 points per game. Campbell began his career coaching wide receivers and tight ends at West Virginia Wesleyan.
Campbell gets to work with assumed incumbent QB Hayden Wolff, along with Stone Smartt and Messiah deWeaver, both of whom joined ODU as JUCO transfers in 2019.
Kevin Smith comes to the Monarchs after being a defensive graduate assistant at Penn State for the last three seasons. He focused on the defensive line for two seasons and linebackers for one. In 2019, Smith helped coach the defensive line that ranked in the top 15 in sacks (45) and tackles for loss (102). Prior to his time at Penn State, Smith coached the defensive line and special teams at Lock Haven and began his coaching career at his alma mater, Urbana.
“Kevin is a rising star in the profession! I’m excited to add his energy and intelligence to the staff. He has a keen eye for schematic nuance and is a great teacher, both qualities that will help us gain an advantage with our special teams unit,” Rahne said about Smith.
ODU fans should be excited to see what Smith can do with a talented linebacker corps, including Jordan Young, Keion White, and Marcus Haynes. Both White and Haynes played in the versatile “bandit” role in 2019.
Rahne is putting his stamp on the staff and should continue to do so over the next few weeks. I expect the staff to include many more of Rahne’s fellow colleagues from his time at Penn State.