Originally posted on Pitt Blather  |  Last updated 1/12/12

Paul Chryst really likes those Wisconsin connections doesn’t he? According to Chris Dokish, he has made his hire for Running Backs Coach. He’s Eddie Faulkner, a former Wisconsin running back who played behind Ron Dayne.

Faulkner is in his thirties and has been working as a MAC running backs coach the last several years. Most of the time spent at Ball State under Brady Hoke and stayed on staff there when Hoke left for SDSU. His recruiting contacts are in Big 10/MAC country.

Last year he was the running backs coach at NIU under Dave Doren — who before taking the head job at  NIU was the defensive coordinator at… Wisconsin. So now Chryst isn’t just raiding his old team. He’s raiding a team headed up by a former colleague.

Hmm. Maybe it isn’t just Chryst. Maybe Wisconsin is just some close-knit cult-like place. All who come from there must surround themselves with others from the same place.

The good news, is that Faulkner is ambitious. He wants to advance. He made that clear in a Q&A from last season.

NS: What knowledge or techniques have you learned in your field over time at your position that you can pass on to the young running backs here at NIU?

EF: I think starting at Wisconsin in particular, they drill so much in the fundamentals that it just sticks with you, and I was able to retain that knowledge and pass it along. They taught you how to run, block, tackle, throw and catch. All of those things were instilled in us as players at Wisconsin, and if you’re trying to be the best football coach you can be, as I am, then those things are going to stick with you as you rise through the ranks.

[Emphasis added.]

He wants to keep rising, then he has to coach and recruit to impress.

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