Big 12 News

Missouri Poaching Houston DL Coach Brian Early: Report

Did you think the coaching carousel was done turning? I sure hope not, especially if you’re a fan of the Houston Cougars.

According to a report from 247Sports’ Matt Zenitz, Missouri is expected to hire Houston defensive line coach Brian Early, who was retained by Willie Fritz when he took over the Cougars’ program back in December.

“Missouri is expected to hire Houston defensive line coach Brian Early, sources tell @247sports,” Zenitz said on Twitter. “Early has produced a number of standout defensive linemen at Houston and had been retained by new head coach Willie Fritz.”


Early had just completed his sixth season at Houston and had become a very well-regarded coach at his position. Over the last several years, Early played a pivotal role in several Houston defensive linemen moving on to the NFL, including former UH superstar, Ed Oliver.

Now, Early will become part of a rebuilt staff with the Missouri Tigers, who just turned in an 11-2 season in 2023, capped by a 14-3 victory over Ohio State in the Cotton Bowl.

Mizzou head coach Eli Drinkwitz recently had to replace defensive coordinator Blake Baker after he was hired for the same duties at LSU. Missouri went out and grabbed Corey Batoon out of South Alabama, and Early will now become a key member of his defensive staff as well.

Willie Fritz and the Cougars will have to pivot and find a replacement before spring football kicks off, but they’ve got several weeks before then, and that’s more than enough time in the coaching carousel of today.

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