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Ty Detmer, Ilaisa Tuiaki join BYU coaching staff as coordinators

(Scott G Winterton/Deseret News)


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PROVO — Merry Christmas, BYU fans.

After multiple reports about an imminent coaching hire, BYU officially announced the two coordinators that will work under new head coach Kalani Sitake on Christmas Eve.

Sitake announced former quarterback Ty Detmer as offensive coordinator and former Oregon State linebackers coach Ilaisa Tuiaki as defensive coordinator Thursday afternoon, as KSL Sports first reported Wednesday afternoon.

"It's an honor to announce Ty Detmer and Ilaisa Tuiaki as the offensive and defensive coordinators on our coaching staff at BYU," Sitake said in a statement from the school. "Each has an exceptional football mind and a real passion to help our young men succeed on and off the football field.

"I am looking forward to working with them as we complete our staff and prepare our team for the 2016 season."

Detmer comes to BYU after a 14-year NFL career and a career as a head football coach at St. Andrew's Episcopal School in Austin, Texas, since 2010. The San Antonio native is one of the most accomplished players in BYU history, winning the Heisman Trophy in 1990 and holding school records in career passing yards, total touchdowns and total offense. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2012, and the BYU Hall of Fame in 2000.

Detmer was a two-time All-American and two-time winner of the Davey O'Brien Award given to the top quarterback in the nation, as well as a recipient of the Maxwell Award and Sammy Baugh Trophy. He finished his career at BYU with 15,031 passing yards, currently the fifth-most in NCAA history.

Photo: Deseret News archives
Photo: Deseret News archives

A 1991 graduate of BYU and convert to the LDS Church during his junior year, Detmer and his wife Kim have four daughters.

"My family and I are extremely excited to be part of the football program at BYU again," Detmer said in a statement. "I feel it is the right time to make a move and jump in head first. I couldn't be more excited."

Tuiaki was the linebackers coach and special teams coordinator at Oregon State, where he worked with Sitake and former Utah State head coach Gary Andersen for one season. The Provo native has eight years of collegiate coaching experience, the bulk of them in stops at Utah and Utah State, as well as Kearns High School.

The Timpview High alum helped Utah's defense finish No. 1 in the nation in 2014 with 55 sacks, ranking second in sacks per game at 3.25.

He was a graduate assistant on the Utah team that finished No. 2 in the nation in 2008 with an undefeated record and a win over Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

In his two seasons at Utah State as running backs coach and special teams coordinator, he helped mentor NFL draft picks Robert Turbin and Michael Smith. Under Tuiaki's tutelage, Turbin ran for 1,517 yards and a school-record 19 touchdowns, earning 2011 WAC Offensive Player of the Year honors.

Tuiaki played running back at Snow College and Southern Utah, graduating in 2006 with degrees in English and physical education after serving two years in the New York, New York South mission of the LDS Church. He and his wife Viola are the parents of six children.

"I am excited to be back home," Tuiaki said in a statement. "I've always been a fan and tied to the BYU program growing up just down the street from the stadium. I'm grateful to the Oregon State family and for coach Andersen and everything he's done for my career. I am really looking forward to this new opportunity to work with Kalani and help the great young men at BYU reach their goals."

No additional coaches or responsibilities were announced by BYU, but further day-to-day responsibilities will be determined as each position coach is hired.

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Sean Walker

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