MU promotes Ofodile to new 10th assistant position

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A.J. Ofodile

Just days after hiring Derek Dooley to become the Tigersí next offensive coordinator, Missouri football coach Barry Odom made another addition to his staff Monday, naming director of recruiting A.J. Ofodile as the programís 10th full-time assistant coach.

Ofodile, a letter-winner at tight end for the Tigers from 1991-93, has played a key role in the first two recruiting classes brought into Columbia since Odomís hiring in 2015. With Ofodile at the helm, Odomís classes have yielded strong results, with young players such as Trystan Castillo, TreíVour Simms and Larry Rountree III among those emerging into big roles.

His focus will now transition onto the field. Ofodileís official role on the staff is yet to be announced, but PowerMizzou.com has reported that he will retain most of his recruiting duties in the transition. An added benefit of being a full-time assistant is that it will allow Ofodile to go on the road to recruit for the Tigers.

ďA.J. has been a very vital member of our staff the past two years,Ē Odom said in a release. ďIíve leaned on his input in a lot of areas, and heís constantly made our program better. Heís a loyal guy who cares about our kids and making Mizzou the best it can be. Iím excited to have him on board with our coaching staff, and am looking forward to how he can help us improve.Ē

After a six-year playing career in the NFL made up of stints with the Buffalo Bills, Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens, Ofodile went into coaching. He served as an assistant under Odom at Rock Bridge High School in 2001 and became the teamís head football coach in 2003, when Odom left to join Missouriís coaching staff. Ofodile headed the Bruinsí football program for 13 seasons (2003-15), reaching the state championship game in 2013. He was hired to his most recent role as director or recruiting in May of 2016.

ďIím very excited for the opportunity to continue to contribute to the success and growth of this program,Ē Ofodile said in a release. ďWe have outstanding young men who believe in Coach Odomís vision for their program and it is exciting to have the opportunity to work with our kids more directly going forward. The future of Mizzou Football is very bright and Iím excited to take on a new role and contribute to its success wherever Iím asked.Ē

In his final season playing for Missouri, Ofodile hauled in four touchdowns to go with 589 yards on 55 catches, which earned him a 1993 first-team All-Big Eight selection.

After losing a couple of assistants midseason and since seasonís end ó most notably offensive coordinator Josh Heupel, who left to become the head coach at UCF ó Odom has his staff at full strength. Ofodile joins Brad Davis (offensive line), Vernon Hargreaves (linebackers) and Dooley as the newest members of Missouriís coaching staff.

Supervising editor is Pete Bland: blandp@missouri.edu, 882-5729.

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