USC fills two openings on football staff
COLUMBIA -- Steve Spurrier filled two of his three assistant coaching vacancies Friday, hiring Joe Robinson to coach special teams and tight ends, and Kirk Botkin to coach linebackers. Only the running backs coach job remains open.
Robinson spent last season as the defensive line coach at North Carolina, which did not retain interim head coach Everett Withers, who replaced the fired Butch Davis shortly before the season.
Before working at North Carolina, Robinson spent three seasons as LSU's special teams coordinator and defensive line coach. In 2010, Robinson was named Football Scoop's special teams coordinator of the year after LSU ranked in the top 13 nationally in net punting, kickoff return average and punt return average.
Robinson, 51, worked from 2004-07 at Arizona, where he coached special teams and defensive ends. In 2004, he worked alongside current USC wide receivers coach Steve Spurrier Jr.
"Our special teams will be in good hands under coach Robinson," the elder Spurrier said in a statement released by the school.
Robinson replaces John Butler, who left to become an assistant at Penn State. USC's two other departed assistants are Jay Graham (running backs and tight ends) and Ellis Johnson (defensive coordinator and linebackers). Graham became the running backs coach at Tennessee, his alma mater. Johnson became the head coach at Southern Mississippi.
Botkin, 40, was most recently the head coach for the past two seasons at Texas High in Texarkana, Texas. In 2008 and 2009, he coached defensive ends and special teams at Arkansas, where he was an All-Southeastern Conference tight end in 1992 and 1993, before an injury-shortened four-year NFL career.
Like Robinson, Botkin has previously worked with a member of USC's current staff. In 2008, he coached alongside Lorenzo Ward, who was promoted by Spurrier before USC's bowl game from defensive backs coach to defensive coordinator.
"I feel that coach Botkin will bring energy, enthusiasm and good play to our linebackers," Spurrier said.
USC reserve defensive tackle Byron Jerideau, who is from Green Pond, was arrested early Friday morning and, per school policy, automatically suspended from the team.
According to a police report, Jerideau was arrested in the Five Points area of Columbia after using profanity at oncoming traffic as he crossed the street without using a crosswalk. Jerideau was almost struck by a vehicle. When a police officer approached him, Jerideau cursed at the officer. He continued to use profanity as two other officers arrived and helped take him into custody.
Jerideau, 22, was charged with public disorderly conduct. He couldn't be reached for comment.
Jerideau was a redshirt junior in 2011. Jerideau joined USC in 2010 after transferring from junior college. He played in all 13 games in 2011 as senior Travian Robertson's backup, with seven tackles, 1 1/2 sacks and a fumble recovery.