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Cal Football

Marcel Yates Named Cal’s Defensive Backs Coach

January 25, 2020
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BERKELEY – Cal head coach Justin Wilcox announced Saturday that Marcel Yates has agreed to become the Golden Bears' defensive backs coach. Yates is a 19-year coaching veteran with previous stints at Arizona, Boise State, Texas A&M and Montana State. Yates has served as a defensive coordinator for eight seasons.

"We are excited to bring someone with Marcel's experience and resume onto our staff as our defensive backs coach," Wilcox said. "The staffs he has coached on have won a lot of games, and Marcel has a tremendous skill set as a coach, teacher and top recruiter."

"The foundation for great success has been put in place over the last three seasons at Cal," Yates said. "The progress Cal has made under coach Wilcox is not surprising. I enjoyed working with him when we were at Boise State and am thankful that I will have the opportunity to do it again in Berkeley. I'm looking forward to joining the excellent culture at Cal."

During Yates' two seasons as the defensive coordinator at Boise State (2014-15), the Broncos' attacking-style defense ranked highly in several notable categories, including being one of two teams nationally to post top-10 finishes for turnovers forced both seasons, collecting 31 in each campaign while ranking tied for fifth in 2015 and tied for ninth in 2014. His 2014 unit also ranked seventh nationally in both tackles for loss (7.8 per game) and sacks (3.4 per game), while the 2015 squad turned in the nation's fifth-best rush defense (108.2 ypg), 12th-best total defense (318.3 ypg) and 18th-best scoring defense (20.2 ppg).



Yates spent a total of 11 seasons over two tenures at Boise State, Prior to his run as defensive coordinator, he coached the team's cornerbacks from 2003-05 before taking over the entire secondary from 2006-11 while adding a passing game coordinator title in 2011. The Broncos had tremendous success during Yates' time in Boise, compiling a 127-18 (.876) overall record including unbeaten seasons in 2006 and 2009, and winning eight conference titles and seven bowl games. Boise State was ranked in the final national polls eight times and as high as No. 4 in 2006.

Yates coached five defensive backs during his final six campaigns at Boise State who were selected in the NFL Draft.

Yates also coached on a pair of winning staffs at Texas A&M. The Aggies won 11 games for the first time since 1998 in the first of his two campaigns in 2012 and finished the season ranked fifth nationally in both the AP Top 25 and USA Today Coaches Poll. Texas A&M then went 9-4 in his second season in 2013 and ranked No. 18 in both final polls.

During his recent stint at Arizona (2016-19), Yates coached three players who earned Freshman All-America honors including Colin Schooler, who was also named the Pac-12's Defensive Freshman of the Year in 2017. Arizona intercepted 19 passes in 2017 to rank tied for seventh nationally and the most for the program since 1985, while forcing 25 turnovers to tie for 23rd in the country.

Yates began his coaching career an assistant secondary coach at Montana State from 2001-02. In his second season, the Bobcats won their first Big Sky Conference Championship and earned their first NCAA Division I-AA Playoff appearance in 18 years.

Yates earned his bachelor's degree in social science from Boise State in 2000. Following his senior season, he was honored with the team's Denny Erickson Award for Valor.

Yates has two children, daughter Kaybrie and son Eric.
 
Marcel Yates Coaching History
Seasons: Team – Position
2001-02: Montana State – Assistant Secondary Coach
2003-11: Boise State – Cornerbacks (2003-05); Secondary (2006-11); Passing Game Coordinator/Secondary (2011)
2012-13: Texas A&M – Co-Defensive Coordinator
2014-15: Boise State – Defensive Coordinator
2016-19: Arizona – Defensive Coordinator/LB (2016, 18; Defensive Coordinator/CB (2017); Defensive Coordinator/S (2019)

Marcel Yates File
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
College: Boise State, 2000, BS, Social Science
Family: Son – Eric; Daughter – Kaybrie

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Discussion from...

Marcel Yates Named Cal’s Defensive Backs Coach

7,848 Views | 36 Replies | Last: 4 mo ago by BearlyClad
GoBears89
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Wow, that was quick! From what little I know about Yates, he seems like a pretty good pick up. Anyone know how he is as a recruiter??
MoragaBear
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Staff
He's always had a strong rep as a recruiter. Supposedly his areas of strength are LA/SoCal, Texas and Louisiana.
bonsallbear
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Did we just upgrade our DB coach position? Seems like a solid hire.
Redonkulous Bear
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"Yo dawg bear, I heard you like DB coaches... So we hired the DB coach that coached your DB coach."
http://i.imgur.com/mNs8KsU.jpg
joe amos yaks
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Yes, did he play DB?
MoragaBear
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Staff
joe amos yaks said:

Yes, did he play DB?
Yes he did, at Pacific then Boise State after Pacific dropped their program in the late 90s.
oskirules
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Radical Bear
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Another Boise State connection. Very interesting. Hmm.
stanfurdbites
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My guess he's being groomed as a successor or safety blanket if/when Deruyter leaves
Cal_79
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stanfurdbites said:

My guess he's being groomed as a successor or safety blanket if/when Deruyter leaves

My guess is he's being hired as the DB coach for when GA moves on to the NFL.
Marty
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Sorry that Cal lost Alexander, who clearly has the coaching chops, and was arguably the best recruiter on the staff. I think filling the hole with Yates, especially as quickly as JW was able to, is about as good a fallback as we could have hoped for. He has a solid reputation as both coach and recruiter. There is no such thing as "too much recruiting talent" and given the resources available to the program, good recruiters are even more important in Berkeley than at some of the higher profile programs in the Pac-12 and other P5 conferences.Losing assistants is always tough, but is generally indicative of success and improvement, which is the case here. Overall, I think JW has done an excellent job of filling the vacancies with solid, respected coaches, and done so quickly and efficiently. I like the fact that there's not alot of gossip and speculation, and that he keeps the information in-house. That's one indication of a solid CEO. I don't recall exactly, but the optics with regard to Wilcox' assistants strike me as infinitely more positive that what transpired in relation to Sonny's assistants. Hell, Tony Franklin left Cal for one of the directional Tennessee schools, which was not a good look for Cal. Looking forward to hearing how the early enrollees do in spring practice, and how the new staff comes together.
touchdownbears43
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Don't want to side track the thread but GA was obviously a great coach and developer of talent and a hot talent by every accord but we've gotten way too much on his jock about his recruiting prowess. We haven't really landed any DB "blue chips" and it's not like he was some second coming of Tosh. Yates certainly seems qualified and has the pedigree to hopefully step in and pickup where GA left off.
Bobodeluxe
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All of the coaches on this staff are the best in the nation.
packawana
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A lot of folks from A&M and Arizona are very low on him. But JW has shown he knows what he's doing so we'll see.
MoragaBear
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Staff
The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandom.
packawana
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Eh, Wilcox only really underperformed at SC but kept a solid track record at multiple stops beforehand. Boise was the last time Yates did great as DB coach, and that was multiple schools ago. Like I said, we'll see how it works out but based on track record I'm going to remain skeptical until we see on-field performance or an uptick in DB recruiting.
Cal_79
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Glad you're so much more knowledgeable than Wilcox in these matters...
Fyght4Cal
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touchdownbears43 said:

Don't want to side track the thread but GA was obviously a great coach and developer of talent and a hot talent by every accord but we've gotten way too much on his jock about his recruiting prowess. We haven't really landed any DB "blue chips" and it's not like he was some second coming of Tosh.
L.O.L.
🎵There’s the Highland Dutch and the Lowland Dutch
The Rotterdam Dutch and Tim DeRuyter 🎶
packawana
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I'm glad you read my first post where I noted that JW knows what he's doing and will defer to him. But believe it or not, people are still allowed to be skeptical over decisions our head coach makes.
CALiforniALUM
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You all just need to enjoy the journey more. When you accept it for what it is you will smell roses sooner. Your negative frustration and critical thinking only serves to delay your gratification.
upsetof86
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Clearly, Wilcox and company were well prepared. Criticisms from Arizona fans? A&M fans? Puhlease.
Cal_79
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Seems like you're talking out of both sides of your mouth when you say, "JW knows what he's doing" but will be skeptical of his decisions.
Hei Bei
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Cal_79 said:

Seems like you're talking out of both sides of your mouth when you say, "JW knows what he's doing" but will be skeptical of his decisions.
Have all of his assistant coaching decisions been good ones?
Bear19
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Obviously Wilcox had this lined up for some time - the mark of a top notch HC imho.
Cal_79
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Do I feel his choices of assistants have been good ones? Yes. Do I feel all his choices have been successful? No. Do I trust his judgment in these matters? Yes.

BTW, it doesn't take any skill (or even relevant knowledge) to be a a critic.
71Bear
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MoragaBear said:

The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandom.
The other side of that coin...

When a coach joins a program, the fans of that program think he is the best of the best.

Alexander was an excellent coach who earned a strong reputation in the business. Time will tell whether Yates can successfully step into Alexander's shoes.
UrsineMaximus
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71Bear said:

MoragaBear said:

The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandom.
The other side of that coin...

When a coach joins a program, the fans of that program think he is the best of the best.

Alexander was an excellent coach who earned a strong reputation in the business. Time will tell whether Yates can successfully step into Alexander's shoes.
damn big shoes in terms of production. in terms of recruiting, it should be easy to fill those shoes.

MiltyBear
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Great hire. Yates has been DC for quite some time now. It's the 4th coach with extensive DC experience now?

Wilcox making this hire so quickly really shows he's on top of things. He's really got binders full of coaches.

Also I'd trade Buh for Yates any day.
Hei Bei
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Cal_79 said:

Do I feel his choices of assistants have been good ones? Yes. Do I feel all his choices have been successful? No. Do I trust his judgment in these matters? Yes.

BTW, it doesn't take any skill (or even relevant knowledge) to be a a critic.
Or a homer.

I like that you distinguish between choices and success. Baldwin was a reasonable choice. Just didn't work out.
71Bear
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MiltyBear said:

Great hire. Yates has been DC for quite some time now. It's the 4th coach with extensive DC experience now?
J
Wilcox making this hire so quickly really shows he's on top of things. He's really got binders full of coaches.

Also I'd trade Buh for Yates any day.
As a DC, Yates is not a star. Of course, that has nothing to do whether he can coach a particular unit.

Last year, AZ was 118th out of 130 (and last in the P12) in the NCAA in scoring defense. That is the reason he was fired by Arizona.

As with all Asst. hires, I trust Wilcox. Obviously, not all of his choices pan out. Hopefully, this is a hit not a miss.........
heartofthebear
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MoragaBear said:

The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandumb
FIFY
Rushinbear
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stanfurdbites said:

My guess he's being groomed as a successor or safety blanket if/when Deruyter leaves
Sirmon?
Rushinbear
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71Bear said:

MoragaBear said:

The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandom.
The other side of that coin...

When a coach joins a program, the fans of that program think he is the best of the best.

Alexander was an excellent coach who earned a strong reputation in the business. Time will tell whether Yates can successfully step into Alexander's shoes.
Don't forget that Yates is an experienced coach who is stepping into a system designed and operated by two levels of coaches above him (Tim and JW). JW and Tim must know his skills and approach (attacking v bbdb v ?) and no doubt talked this over with him before pulling the trigger.
71Bear
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Rushinbear said:

71Bear said:

MoragaBear said:

The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandom.
The other side of that coin...

When a coach joins a program, the fans of that program think he is the best of the best.

Alexander was an excellent coach who earned a strong reputation in the business. Time will tell whether Yates can successfully step into Alexander's shoes.
Don't forget that Yates is an experienced coach who is stepping into a system designed and operated by two levels of coaches above him (Tim and JW). JW and Tim must know his skills and approach (attacking v bbdb v ?) and no doubt talked this over with him before pulling the trigger.
I agree. While he may not be DC material at the P5 level, he could be an excellent position coach.
calumnus
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Rushinbear said:

71Bear said:

MoragaBear said:

The same could be said of Wilcox with USC fans, DeRuyter with FSU fans, Spavitol with A&M fans, etc. It's the nature of fandom.
The other side of that coin...

When a coach joins a program, the fans of that program think he is the best of the best.

Alexander was an excellent coach who earned a strong reputation in the business. Time will tell whether Yates can successfully step into Alexander's shoes.
Don't forget that Yates is an experienced coach who is stepping into a system designed and operated by two levels of coaches above him (Tim and JW). JW and Tim must know his skills and approach (attacking v bbdb v ?) and no doubt talked this over with him before pulling the trigger.


Looks like a good hire. This will be key as we lost 6 (?) DBs to graduation?
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