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Michigan Panthers Announce 2023 Coaching Staff

With Coaches reporting to their respective hubs, the USFL officially announced via each team’s twitter the upcoming coaching staffs. The Michigan Panthers who return home and will be playing at Ford, will be returning only one coach for the 2023 season, Offensive Coordinator Eric Marty.

Head Coach: Mike Nolan

Easily the most experienced of the group Nolan, comes to the USFL after last serving as the Dallas Cowboys Defensive Coordinator in 2020. Nolan entered the coaching ranks in 1981 as a Grad Assistant at Oregon, building his resume along four colleges and eleven NFL franchises. Most notably Nolan was the Head Coach of the San Franciso 49ers from 2005 to 2008 earning an 18-37 record before getting fired.

Offensive Coordinator: Eric Marty

Marty returns to Michigan as the sole member of the 2022 staff. Marty led the Michigan Panthers offense to the 2nd most total yards in the USFL, and was instrumental in putting All-USFL RB Reggie Corbin as one of the more dynamic rushers in the league. Marty goes into 2023 with Josh Love and Eric Bairrere as his Quarterbacks who will be protected a revamped offensive line, and new receivers.

Defensive Coordinator: Steve Brown

Brown was announced as the Panthers Defensive Coordinator on February 7th, after Dan Carrel announced his departure to Coastal Carolina. Brown was most recently with East Tennessee State coaching their Defensive Backs since 2018. He’s been coaching since 1995 joining the St. Louis Rams as Defensive Assistant, staying with the Rams until 2000 winning a Super Bowl in 1999, and ascending to the position of Secondary Coach. The Panthers will be his third time as a Defensive Coordinator in his career.

Offensive Line: Tim Holt

Holt returns to professional football after spending 2015 to 2017 with the Oakland Raiders. Holt started coaching in 1995 with Southern Connecticut, working with Tight Ends and Offensive Lines throughout his career. Holt has been apart of Six college and Three NFL coaching staffs.

Tight Ends: Gary Watkins

It appears Watkins will be performing double duty, by not only coaching with the Michigan Panthers but also the San Diego Mesa College. Watkins has served as Head Coach of the program, posting a 25-18 since taking the position in 2018. Watkins opportunity with the Panthers is first coaching job at the professional level.

Defensive Line: Connor Bauer

Connor Bauer joins the Panthers as his first professional coaching job. Bauer will have the luxury of coaching high draft picks, Robert Nkemdiche and Breeland Speaks.

Wide Receivers and Special Teams Coordinator: Jaron Fairman

Fairman joins the Panthers after serving as an analyst at Ole Miss. Fairman joined the coaching ranks after playing Wide Receiver at Fresno State from 2003 to 2006. Fairman has had coaching stints at Nicholls State, Western State (CO), Crespi HS, USC and Florida State. The Michigan Panthers are Fairman’s first professional coaching opportunity.

Linebackers: Christian Runza

Runza is another rookie coach at the professional level after spending the past several seasons at Towson University. Runza a former reserve Linebacker and Special Teams standout at Monmouth University was teammate with Houston Gamblers Quarterback Kenji Bahar. Runza now has the opportunity to coach Panthers Linebackers Frank Ginda, Terry Myrick, Paddy Fischer, and Justin Hughes.

Running Backs: Jordan Pavlisin

After spending the last several seasons at ULM, Pavlisin a reservist Marine Officer, joins the dynamic Running Back room that sports 2022 All-USFL Running Back Reggie Corbin. Pavlisin, a former professional Arena and European Football player, also was an assistant offensive line coach at Elon.

With the coaching staff set for all USFL teams, coaches prepare for players to begin reporting for camp on March 16th, with camp beginning on March 20th. The Panthers who were 2-8 in 2022, look to improve in 2023 as they return to Michigan and look to continue to Detroit’s recent success of professional football teams.

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Pat Rifino is a former Security Contractor turned writer. He began his writing career talking about geo-politics, and the defense industry. Now Pat writes about alt-league football, while hanging out with his dogs in his off time.

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