Pet projects: A coach and his position

Updated: August 16, 2006, 7:43 PM ET
By Bruce Feldman | ESPN The Magazine
QB guru Charlie Weis isn't the only coach who is remaking a team in his own image. Here are three more who are using the position they know best to build their program.

Mike Stoops: Arizona DBs

Pedigree: A former star safety at Iowa who tutored a run of top DBs at Oklahoma, including Thorpe winner Derrick Strait and first-rounders Roy Williams and Andre Woolfolk.

Prodigies: In CB Antoine Cason and safety Michael Johnson, Stoops has two more guys with first-round potential. Cason (6'0, 182 pounds) has picked off seven passes in his career, including three last year, and he has eight tackles for a loss. Johnson, a 6'2", 205-pound transfer from Tyler (Texas) JC, made 60 tackles last year and a team-best four interceptions. Not surprisingly, Stoops sounds like he is far from finished schooling them. "Those guys have all-conference type of ability, and at times they play that way," he says. "But there has to be more consistency."


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