It’s been a whirlwind weekend for the Wildcats football team. First the Kentucky defensive coordinator was leaving and is now staying in Lexington. Let’s get you caught up on how Matt House spurned the NFL to remain at Kentucky.
Matt House Spurns NFL To Remain At Kentucky
A Crazy 36 Hours
Early Friday morning word broke House was leaving Lexington to join Andy Reid’s staff in Kansas City.
Source: the Chiefs are expected to hire University of Kentucky defensive coordinator Matt House as their linebackers coach.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) February 8, 2019
In taking the linebackers coach position he would be reuniting with Steve Spagnuolo. The new Chiefs defensive coordinator. He and House previously coached together with the St. Louis Rams from 2009-2011. However late Saturday evening the university confirmed the third year defensive coordinator was staying with Kentucky.
Long considered a coach with a very bright future, House is credited with developing Aaron Donald at Pittsburgh, now one of the best defensive linemen in football. Furthermore he is credited for helping turn Josh Allen from a two start recruit to a top three pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.
However in this day and time nothing seems to be black and white. Word came later in the evening Kentucky may have refused to let House out of his contract.
My understanding is, #Kentucky was originally slated to negotiate the buyout for Matt House to be the #Chiefs LBs coach… then decided against it. Was told House wanted to be in KC. Position open once again. https://t.co/GwzADAoVJI
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 10, 2019
A follow up to this came from a Kansas City writer.
So regarding Matt House, who was expected to be the Chiefs’ new LB coach:
I’m told UK decided not to let him out of his deal…but they only did that AFTER they’d agreed to negotiate the buyout. Tough break for House, who wanted to join the Chiefs, and KC.
— Terez A. Paylor (@TerezPaylor) February 10, 2019
Most True Blue Fans have a hard time believing either Stoops or athletic director Mitch Barnhart would block House from leaving. If so it really puts the university in a bad light. Hopefully all of the parties involved make a statement to put this issue to rest.
Another Coaching Victory For Mark Stoops
Nonetheless House is the second member of the staff to flirt with another job before returning to Kentucky. Shortly after the 2018 season ended Georgia offered offensive coordinator Eddie Gran the same position. The chance to coach a national title contender had to be enticing. However Gran stated via Twitter Kentucky’s where he wants to be.
I’m all in, #BBN! Let’s do this !
— Eddie Gran (@CoachGran) January 10, 2019
House’s situation is much the same as Gran’s. It’s not like he was going to a bad NFL team. The Chiefs were a coin flip away from winning the AFC before losing to eventual champion New England. They are led by NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes, who quarterback’s one of the best teams in the NFL. As a result the Chiefs are a popular pick to represent the conference in Super Bowl 54.
The decision to stay with Kentucky couldn’t have been an easy one. However, coming off the best season in 41 years it’s obvious this staff believes in Stoops and what they are building in Lexington.
A Big Test In 2019
In 2018 Kentucky’s defense ranked sixth in the country in points allowed. In addition they placed in the Top 25 in yards allowed with 337 a game. However heading into next season House’s defense has a number of players to replace. In addition to Allen the entire secondary will be brand new. All totaled six of the eight Kentucky players receiving an NFL Combine invitation are on defense.
Next season is going to be a big test for House and whether they can retain the momentum gained over the last couple of years.
Again the big news over the weekend is Matt House spurns the NFL to remain at Kentucky. Should there be any more updates to the situation we will have them for you here at Last Word On College Football.